JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The long-term plan to impact crime in any city is complicated. Jackson is certainly no exception.
The myriad issues include: unhealthy family dynamics, weak parental relationships and supervision, the educational system, job opportunities, blight and abandoned properties, drugs, gangs… the list goes on.
Creating evolutional change will take a massive reimagination, a lot of time, energy, investment and buy-in across every community in the city.
Unfortunately, Jackson does not have the money, resources, or personnel to make that happen today and it certainly doesn’t have time on its side. For long-term change to begin, we need to get the current epidemic under control now.
It will require putting egos aside and accepting all help offered.
There was finger pointing this week between former US Attorney Mike Hurst and Mayor Lumumba, regarding that possible help. “What he was offering was a militarized state within our city and not any programmatic solutions. I offered a long list of issues that he could help with, and he did not find time to even call me back on any of those issues. I’m not interested in any back-and-forth between any elected official or anyone else. I’m interested in the solutions.”
Maybe part of that solution is a two-week curfew. Hopefully that will help, but who is going to enforce it?
Maybe the immediate solution is a militarized state. I can only imagine how it feels for the 128 families who are mourning the senseless murders that happened last year, or the 167 families who had someone murdered over the two years of 2018 and 2019, or the families of the 13 people murdered in the past month…
I bet they would be willing to do anything to bring their sons, daughters, moms and dads back.
Plans to engage faith groups, create youth programs and other initiatives is an admirable goal, and should be part of the solution, but we all know that will not affect change overnight… it could take a year, maybe five years, or maybe longer; having a larger law enforcement presence could and would have an immediate impact.
The city needs to stop pussyfooting around hoping things will get better. One murder is one too many… the citizens of Jackson want and need aggressive action NOW.