published Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

Latest shooting proves time for action is now

A pregnant 16-year-old near East Lake Courts on Tuesday became a victim in Chattanooga's 80th shooting of 2013. The girl suffered nonlife-threatening injuries to her lower back when she was standing outside with a group and someone in a dark SUV fired off shots in broad daylight just before noon in the 2200 block of East 25th Street.

Witnesses said they heard at least five shots, and one resident, Jet Rose, pleaded for help. "We need protection. We fear for our lives," she told a reporter.

The violence -- often blamed on youth street gangs and drug trafficking -- points up the need for more police officers in Chattanooga and more investigative manpower and prosecution to get the bad guys with guns off the streets. It's a need Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke vowed to meet when he unveiled a budget two weeks ago that would fund 40 new police officers to bring the police ranks to 486, a record high. Berke said the city also would pay for a full-time federal prosecutor -- partnering with the U.S. attorney's office of East Tennessee -- to put shooters and drug dealers behind bars for years at a time, not just from one bonding-out exercise to the next.

If national news in the past week is an indicator, that effort may now require some modification to meet changing national policing norms, though Berke doesn't anticipate any big problems, according to a spokesman.

A New York civil rights case ended in a federal court order that ruled New York City's "stop and frisk" policies unconstitutional. The judge found that police there resorted to a "policy of indirect racial profiling" as it increased the number of stops in minority communities. An angry New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg countered that police in the Big Apple have done exactly what the courts and constitution allow to keep the city safe, and killings had dropped to an all-time low of 418 in 2012. The all-time high was 2,245 in 1990.

Then on Monday, U.S. Attorney Gen. Eric Holder -- the boss of federal prosecutors -- added another possible hitch to Chattanooga's plan. Holder said the Justice Department will no longer pursue mandatory minimum sentences for certain low-level, nonviolent drug offenders. Nor will it pursue charges in cases that are better handled by state courts.

The reasons are two-fold: While the entire U.S. population increased by about a third since 1980, the federal prison population has grown by almost 800 percent. And the U.S. simply can't afford to be so "coldly efficient in jailing criminals" while at the same time it "cannot prosecute or incarcerate" its way to becoming safer. Widespread incarceration at all levels is ineffective and unsustainable, totaling $80 billion in 2010 alone. Meanwhile, federal prisons are operating at nearly 40 percent above capacity.

But Holder said violent crime -- such as shootings --will be pursued harder than ever, and in both more productive and preventive ways, including a youth violence prevention summit "to confront the 'school-to-prison pipeline' and those zero-tolerance school discipline policies that do not promote safety, and that transform too many educational institutions from doorways of opportunity into gateways to the criminal justice system."

"A minor school disciplinary offense should put a student in the principal's office and not a police precinct," Holder said.

We agree with that 100 percent. In the first three months of this year, the city's more than 60 shootings involved at least 20 young people under 21, and 14 were Hamilton County students. But only five of those 14 graduated from high school. One died, one went to jail, three were transferred to state youth institutions, one dropped out, another withdrew to Job Corps and two transferred to out-of-state schools.

Nine were D and F students, four were C students, one was an A-B student. Four had records of in-school suspensions and detentions. Five had records of school suspensions, expulsions or orders to alternative schools. Only five had no discipline entries.

The pattern is this: These youths are behind in school, and they eventually leave school, sometimes by their own decisions but sometimes not.

We have to find ways to keep 16-year-olds standing in a group from being injured in drive-by shootings.

And we have to find a way to keep the shooters from taking that violent path.

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ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Being a Father to precious, beautiful children, my heart is broken as I read the above article.

Yet, deep within my mind and spirit I realize the power of a certain Biblical Truth:

Psalm 59:8..."But thou, O Lord, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision."

In many ways these young folks are innocent victims of those rebellious, blind individuals who made horribly foolish decisions in the past. Namely:

  1. Take prayer out of our schools. Replace Jesus Christ, in the impressionable minds of students, with condoms, knifes and guns!

  2. Teach these precious youth that they are but elevated monkeys, that they answer to no one regarding their animalistic sexuality.

  3. Replace The Holy Bible in schools with the Manifesto of the North American Man boy Love Association (N.A.M.b.L.A.), a United States Government protected sex-with-minors establishment.

Ken ORR

August 14, 2013 at 12:44 a.m.
aae1049 said...

Wild teenager is nothing new. The difference is the added culture of violence to wild teenager. Many youth are failing students, look at our school system, pathetic, but not all failing students would be willing to take a life. That is the difference, picking up that gun or knife and carring our violence against another human. That is not an attribute of all failing students. The graduation rate for HCDE was 60 percent, and is now on average over 70 percent. Those remaining 30 percent are not all carrying out acts of violence. I think it is a charter trait on whether you would carry our violence against another human, and a F in math does not have a thing to do with this charter trait. Fix the rotten school system, but don't try to pin violence to grades. HCDE needs to be challenged to be better, give these teenagers a better school option.

The most racist act I have ever seen from HCDE was to end the opt out of failing schools option. They did this about 2 years ago. The HCDE is rotten group. The idea that I would be forced to send a child to a school with known gangs and violence because I am poor is BS.

August 14, 2013 at 7:39 a.m.
LaughingBoy said...

Why was the teen not in class?

August 14, 2013 at 8:36 a.m.
conservative said...

I was not in the mood to figure out this writer's latest gibberish. However, my guess is she did not offer a solution or even lament teen pregnancy.

If she did it was in regards to a "right" to kill her unborn baby.

When you know the character of the beast you can predict the conduct of the beast.

August 14, 2013 at 9:18 a.m.
LaughingBoy said...

There were approx. 200 out at Howard the first day of school and you actually had an administrator claim it was no big deal. Can't get books, can't meet teachers for new.classes and can't get a good start on the school year. When you have an attitude like that in a leadership position it's no wonder some students disregard the importance of education. Even with that where are the parents of those 200 out of 550 letting them miss?

August 14, 2013 at 1:19 p.m.
klifnotes said...

LB, and how many approx. didn't show up for class at other schools? There's been an effort to shut down Howard for decades. The more people harp on and beat up on Howard, the more that becomes more clear.

On gangs, I've worked in many schools. Public, private, religious, low-income, middle-income, high-income. I can assure everyone, there's some level of gang activity that goes on at all of them. Low-income schools just get a bad rap because they're basically low-income and minority. Those other schools don't want the reputation they know will follow the school's name and the students that go there for years to come. So they downplay a lot that goes on at those better schools.

There was an effort to shut Howard down about 15 or 20 years ago. They were going to put up some cheap fabricated building way out in the boondocks where the students would have to wake up by 2a.m. to be bussed there and get to class on time. Then they wouldn't return home until after midnight, and start the process all over again the next day. 2a.m.-midnight.

August 14, 2013 at 3:26 p.m.
LaughingBoy said...

So you think it is okay 200 skipped and their parents let them?

August 14, 2013 at 3:40 p.m.
klifnotes said...

Besides you, LB, who else said they skipped? Are you Assuming they skipped because it's that dreadful Howard with those terrible students and parents?

It's been almost a tradition that many students don't at all school don't show up on the first day, or registration day, for school. That 200 count could be anything, from sloppy counting and paperwork, to students who'd already pre-registered when school let out for the summer, and won't have to come back on the firs day. Then there are students and families that may still be on the on the schedule from last year and who have been taken off the school roster and who may have moved away, but didn't notify the school of the move. They could have moved out of town or into a different school district. ta dah!! See how people jump to conclusions without first waiting for more info to come out?

We all know, we know: Howard=black students. Black=bad or doing wrong in your view.

You never did answer, how many students at other area schools who didn't show up for class? I'll wait............ ;)

August 14, 2013 at 4:25 p.m.
aae1049 said...

Skipping school and absent parents do not determine a propensity towards violent behavior. It is HCDE stinks and needs to do a better job, but even at their best that cannot change what has been witnessed in the home. If child is raised in a household with domestic violence, they will be violet. Sop latching on to report cards and F's in math as a cause of youth violence. It is absurd to suggest that grades will change a lifetime of witnessing domestic violence.

August 14, 2013 at 8:29 p.m.
rick1 said...

aae1049 and LaughingBoy here are two articles I think you find interesting. They are written by two gentleman that I have nothing but respect for and both should be looked up to as a role model for black students.

http://townhall.com/columnists/thomassowell/2013/08/13/are-we-serious-about-education-n1662372/page/full

http://townhall.com/columnists/walterewilliams/2013/08/07/would-they-be-proud-n1656443/page/full

August 14, 2013 at 9:15 p.m.
LaughingBoy said...

AA dropping out is a main risk factor in future crimes. Rick I read both of those gentlemen often and it's too bad some think of them as uncle toms.

August 14, 2013 at 10:10 p.m.
klifnotes said...

LB, only because they both speak your language of hate. If they ever cease to denigrate their own race, all of you presently singing their high praises will be the first to want to ship'em back to Africa or some remote deserted place.

Howard will have be looked down upon in a negative light as long as it's looked upon as a black school. If Howard should ever become a white, or predominately white, school only then will the negative image change. No matter if white kids show up stoned and drunk on most days, in gangs or out, skip school, bring weapons to school whatEVAH!

August 15, 2013 at 11:07 a.m.
LaughingBoy said...

More excuses. Now I'm a "hater" wanting to ship blacks "back", even though most now have never been to Africa to go back there. It's an honor to be compared to Williams and Sowell.

I promise you had Ooltewah or Soddy-Daisy been missing 500 students on day one it would have been big news. It would have been pathetic no matter the majority race of the students. At Howard, 200 out of 550 is no big deal according to some. More excuses. It's too early to start school so oh well, we won't make a big deal out of mass truancy.

August 15, 2013 at 11:26 a.m.
klifnotes said...

LaughingBoy said... More excuses. Now I'm a "hater" wanting to ship blacks "back", even though most now have never been to Africa to go back there.

Actually, I took that from the pages of many of your like-minded minions who've posted those very words here and on other forums in the past. Remember? We progressives began to labeled y'all the ship'em back to Africa, Middle-East, South America (I'm really trying to help you out here, since most of you can't distinguish between South America (a continent) and Mexico. You actually wanted to ship'em all back to Mexico) crowd, you used the term so often.

It's an honor to be compared to Williams and Sowell.

If those are the only two you can come up with, no wonder. Just because they're black doesn't make them experts on black issues or the spokesperson for every black person. No more than it makes you the mouthpiece for every white person.

I promise you had Ooltewah or Soddy-Daisy been missing 500 students on day one it would have been big news. It would have been pathetic no matter the majority race of the students. At Howard, 200 out of 550 is no big deal according to some. More excuses. It's too early to start school so oh well, we won't make a big deal out of mass truancy

Where was anyone making any excuses? Traditionally, school normally doesn't officially start until after Labor Day. That's always been when school picks up. And that's happened whether it was at Soddy-Daisy, Central, City High (when it was predominately white), and most all the schools. Didn't you previously say 200 students went missing from Howard? Now it's 500? Keep going, and you'd have more students missing from Howard than are actually enrolled anyway.

Apparently, you haven't read the update on those missing students and the schools they're missing from. Looks like East Hamilton has the greatest decrease in missing students. Or students who maybe no longer enrolled. Keep trying though. You're hatred for HOWARD shines through loud and clear. Wonder why?....hmmmmm, OH snap! They're majority black students attending there!

August 15, 2013 at 3:45 p.m.
LaughingBoy said...

It's hard to discuss anything with someone who's not just ignorant, but dumb. The schools I named are much larger than Howard, so their absence needed to match would be much larger in comparison. Sowell and Williams were mentioned because they were previously.

August 15, 2013 at 4:03 p.m.
klifnotes said...

LaughingBoy said... It's hard to discuss anything with someone who's not just ignorant, but dumb.

He luvs me, I c'n tell. LOL ;)

  • Sowell and Williams were mentioned because they were previously*

You're the one who said it's an honor. Doesn't say much for you though. ;)

August 15, 2013 at 4:24 p.m.
conservative said...

If you go to the Right2Know tab one can see that nearly all of the shootings are happening in a small area of Chattanooga.

August 17, 2013 at 11:01 a.m.
conservative said...

"Man in serious condition after early morning shooting in Chattanooga"

It happened in that small area mapped at Right2Know. Close to a hospital but also close to many churches that people are obviously not attending.

August 17, 2013 at 11:19 a.m.
LaughingBoy said...

Three more shootings overnight. Let's have more excuses.

August 18, 2013 at 2:31 p.m.
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