Wednesday, October 06, 2010
The 25 most dangerous neighborhoods in the United States, with maps. I was surprised to see that not one of them is in New Jersey, so we have that going for us.
I grew up in Kankakee all those years ago, and my older brother was a student at the University of Chicago. I recall getting mugged on our way back from a Blackhawks game. What's interesting to me is that, of all the rated dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago, none are on the near south side, in the region of, and just below 63d St. Are the days of the Black P-Stone Nation (nee Blackstone Rangers) gone, or have the other neighborhoods gotten more dangerous?
I grew up in Louisville. The area on this list, "Smoketown", is a shit-hole. Every corner-shop is either a boarded-up husk, or sells 40 oz booze and smokes, and crack around back. It's just a few blocks south of what had been several blocks of contiguous projects / slums. The city finally wised up and bulldozed all of them.
A long time ago, two very well-meaning, liberal-minded friends of mine moved to the fringe of Smoketown, spent good money to fix up an old house, and had a kid. They were shocked at the real level of day-to-day violence, and especially the level of arbitrary violence directed against white people and people who had done nothing at all. They eventually sold their house (at a loss of course) and left.
I'm actually a little surprised that this neighborhood is worse than the fabled "west end" of Louisville.
Interesting that there are none in NYC and three in Vegas.
While it is sadly and probably true that, because of a variety of factors, many on the list skew toward minority populations, including African-American, the question to ask might be why urban renewal programs haven't been more effective over the past 50 years? Also, what can be done going forward, short of bulldozing these areas?
A century or so ago, this survey might well have found Irish or Italian neighborhoods as the highest crime areas. Poor whites can commit crimes as well as anyone in the wrong circumstances. Let's give CWCID, to human nature. If you beleive that a predisposition to commit crimes correlates specifically with melanin, I don't think that's particularly helpful in dealing with the long-term issue of urban crime.
Not with melanin, but with culture.
The Mafia was not 'Italian' but 'Sicilian,' and their violent culture was born in Sicily and brought over with them. Someone of Sicilian blood who lived in a Sicilian neighborhood wouldn't have this cultural mentality if they grew up and lived in, say, Bavaria.
Likewise with our own urban crime problems. I'm sure that if you take a black guy raised in Beverly Hills and drop him into eastern D.C., he'll fit in worse than a local white guy or one from the wrong end of Detroit. It's not about being black or being poor. It's about being in a culture that glorifies money, sex, and violence in which crime is seen as a legitimate method of advancement.
That nowadays the primary criminal culture is associated with blacks just makes it less likely to be addressed effectively, and more likely to become honest to goodness generationally self-perpetuating, because anything tainted with race still makes most whites all squishy and nervous.
These are my hypotheses, anyway.
TH . . . from your post:
"I was surprised to see that not one of them is in New Jersey, so we have that going for us."
Don't be too sure that this is true. For example, if you use the link at the end of the article itself to get a quick fix on, say . . . Camden, NJ (which seemed puzzling to other commenters, above as well) you will notice that the following information comes up for the whole City:
Crimes (city-wide) 6,815
Chance of being a victim in this city: 1 in 13
Compare that with the Neighborhood Scout Report analysis for number 25 on the list of the worst 25 -- which is a bad neighborhood in Orlando, FL --
Violent crime Rate per 1,000 -- 79.83 -- 1 in 13.
In other words, the ENTIRE City of Camden -- which includes several relatively safe and highly patrolled areas -- is as statistically dangerous as the absolutely worst neighborhood in Orlando FL.
The entire City of Camden includes areas such as near the Aquarium, the immediate area of the County offices and Court House (remember, this analysis is only about violent crime), and even a few relatively safe remaining residential areas, such as in a few portions of the southern part of Camden.
So, something is wrong with the identification of the worst 25. Some bad neighborhood of Camden should be in that mix.
There are areas of Camden that are so riddled with violent and serious crime you would never go into them without considerable protection, and I will guarantee that several of them have far worse violent crime rates than the ENTIRE City does!
I would not be surprised at all to find out that the actual violent crime rate in certain neighborhoods of Camden is higher than 1 in 8.
...the question to ask might be why urban renewal programs haven't been more effective over the past 50 years?
When I was growing up, the programs were known as urban removal programs. The rap was that they didn't work because they weren't intended to: rotting buildings would be torn down to make room for newer, safer buildings in which the folks could live, but invariably, one of two things would happen: the city (Chicago, in this case) would "run out of money" after the demolition, or some of the buildings would be replaced and rents increased a great deal. This gave rise to the belief that the programs actually were designed to drive the poor folks and other riff-raff out of the city.
That much of the failure was due, in Chicago's case, anyway, to graft and corruption often was elided.
Illegitimacy is a root cause.
Today nearly 70% of black children are born out of wedlock. It was in the high 20s when Sen Moynihan wrote about it back in the 1960s. Today, whites are in the high 20s.
If your parents were married when you’re born, odds are high that you’ll graduate from high school and have a “normal” life. If they weren’t … then not so good. It’s the single best predictor that you can find. I’d bet that it explains whites in Vegas.
A corollary of where violent crime happens most is that it’s mostly black on black … it just doesn’t make the papers.
I know The Bronx well. It’d have been on this list in the 1970s and again in the late 1980s. It’s settled down quite a bit. Hispanics are into family, which is one of the big reasons why.
Culture (which is related to illegitimacy) is a major driver. The New England states, plus the Scandinavian-settled North Central states have lower crime rates than the Appalachian spreading SW areas, even when only white people are taken into account. They were settled by different groups and have maintained their crime differences over centuries. Though we're getting increased crime now that you guys from the rest of the country are moving up here. It is not melanin - East African descendants have lower crime rates than West African. I suspect that not all West African tribes were violent, but their separateness has been erased among American blacks.
Also, when groups rub up against each other, the young men get activated and get more violent, even against others in their own group. In cities, people who are clearly different from you can be spotted 100 yards away - and gang divisions only accentuate the problem. This causes everyone to have a far-reaching radar of anxiety, leading to more crime. It is at this point that the absence of fathers becomes catastrophic.
The low crime rate during the Great Depression demonstrates that poverty does not necessarily lead to crime. Culture and values must be considered. Heather MacDonald wrote an interesting piece on family breakdown and youth violence in Chicago. This connection seems to be something of a taboo subject among politicians.
Too many young men are acting like sperm donors instead of fathers. Too many young women are accepting the probability that this is how their boyfriends will relate to their children.
In our little California town, a pregnant girl of 15 told me that, like her, many of the girls in her special school classes did not know the identity of the fathers of their babies, and would not be listing a father on the birth certificate. (She had earlier been quite hopeful that the father of her child would be returning to her soon).
I think that these girls are not listing a father on the birth certificate in order to limit complications in getting government support. But this deception also limits emotional support from young fathers, and exposes the children to new boyfriends - statistically the most dangerous persons in the lives of "at risk" children.
Another root cause is drugs. All that the War on Drugs has accomplished is to ensure the astronomical profit margin that drives the whole train. In what other business can you double your money every step of the way?
JLW III: "What are the demographics of these neighborhoods?"
They're median 90% black, if that's what you mean.
I'll respect our host and not leave an opinion on his blog that some fool will call "racist," so instead I'll just mention a factoid without interpretation or "moral":
America's #2 Most Dangerous Place (or perhaps it's #20 immediately to the NW) was the home of John D. Rockefeller as a young man. He went to Central High, now East Tech, in that neighborhood in Cleveland.
No kidding. The richest man on earth.