Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Colonels Solution (And Action) To Local Crime!

I believe the cause and effect of most of the Quad Cities crime problems can be summarized in today’s Quad City Times. An assistant professor of a local University summarizes the realities of the day; by saying “The kids are raising themselves”!

As a community, we cringe at a 17-year-old girl getting shot by a former boy friend. But according to the local newspaper, the guy is 27 years old and the local school district has classified the girl as a “non-attender”.

And has anyone noticed the lack of news regarding the number of arrest in the North Park Mall riot of 2007. By all accounts, police officers arrived with-in a minute of the call, but witnesses indicates the event went on for nearly 30 minutes with some 30 to 60 “kids” participating.

What we need here is a strong does of common sense and adults acting like adults. Even when some adults don’t know how! So the Colonels plan to deal with crime:

1. We have age restriction curfews. They will be enforced immediately.

2. Iowa law specifically defines truancy, and the local school and municipal entities will immediately invest (insert dollar) for more officers to deal with this issue. If you’re not at school, your breaking the law.

3. Davenport City Code specifically deals with Parent Responsibility. Not only will it be enforced, but also local staff will work with County and State members to seek criminal charges of neglect and endangerment.

4. Local businessmen will collaborate, and buy the old ST. Vincent’s Home presently in the midst of bankruptcy with the Catholic Dioceses. Scott County will agree to take it over, and with assistance from State funding, open the Scott County Boys and Girls Home.

5. Private Schools, will agree to take the troubled boys and girls into their system as long as the public school funds transfer with them. The Catholics, Lutherans, Baptist or whomever can mold troubled 17-year-old girls that think a 27-year-old boy is “hot”. Maybe then, the schools that have since closed can reopen and save the surrounding neighborhoods. Maybe these kids could thrive in an environment where the students are afraid of the teachers and not vice versa.

6. The names of juveniles as well as their parent(s)/guardian will be published in local papers and scrolled along public access channels.

Let’s do this in the first six months. If it sounds familiar, it was Davenport in the 1930’s to early 60’s. It was a system that saved young boys and girls, some like our own Mark Freise who grew up at St. Vincent’s and became a contributing member of society.

It’s time to stop blaming the city council and start acting like responsible adults. So here is my solution. In fact, I (The Colonel) will find private money to acquire St. Vincent’s if you the bloggers get the County to take it over. I (The Colonel) will work with any and all private schools, if you the bloggers can convince the State to allow public funds to follow the students.

Lets go folks; there is work to be done.



At January 25, 2007 10:21 AM, Blogger cruiser said...

Good post. I was working on one very similar. But I have to disagree that the city council is not at fault. They would be the ones to enact the curfew, which they haven't. And the curfew would have to be one of the first steps.

At January 25, 2007 11:29 AM, Blogger QCMediaGhost said...

Repeating the comment left on ‘cruiser’s’ blog, “The kids are raising themselves” quote is the best insight to date. How about ‘double indemnity’ and incarcerate the parent(s) an equal amount of time as the perp? -Ghost

At January 25, 2007 12:42 PM, Blogger The Colonel said...

I might be wrong, but I am 99% sure Davenport ALREADY has a curfew ordinance in place.

At January 25, 2007 1:06 PM, Blogger cruiser said...

I think you're right about the curfew also, but if no one is enforcing it than I don't consider it in effect.

At January 25, 2007 1:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We already have a boys and girls home at Annie Witt.

At January 25, 2007 2:15 PM, Blogger QCMediaGhost said...

Does anyone think we would have the crime problem in the QCA if our leadership was Republican? Check the results of Arizona’s Maricopa County Sheriff, Joe Arpaio. If you don’t commit a crime, you don’t have to deal with Sheriff Joe; but if you do, may the Lord have mercy on your freedom. One can’t look at the criminals through law abiding eyes, therefore there’s no reason trying to understand why they do what they do. But if the laws were tough, and the black robes were filled with men, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. -Ghost

At January 25, 2007 2:31 PM, Blogger The Colonel said...

No, we have a social agency at Annie Witt. I worked there once, and they turn key these kids because of the courts or federal grants.

I am talking about a good ole "home", where the rights of the parent (usually living with a boy friend) are garnished for ever. The kids are then taken care of by the County, and I would hope, educated in a private school system.

I am sure a few of the "kids" might need to retake a grade of school, but I will be damned if they wouldn't have a better life.

We know one thing for sure. They wouldn't be 17 yrs old, getting gun downed by their 27 yr old former boyfriend.

At January 25, 2007 4:30 PM, Blogger Aloaber said...

You hit the nail on the head with this post. I beleive this is the absolute root cause of much of Davenports and the country's crime problems. I'm onboard with your program.

At January 25, 2007 5:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

St. Vincents would make a great reformatory. If you really want to turn the kids around, make Nicky Bowls the school headmaster. She would get them whipped into shape in record time. Oompa!

At January 25, 2007 5:42 PM, Anonymous Nobody said...

In my opinion the people have gotten what they bred. For years they have taken more and more of the parents responsibility and punished them for trying to raise their children. Now the children do raise themselves. The parent is not allowed for fear of some rule like the new attempt by California to make the parent criminal for punishing the child. You cannot have it both ways. You cannot punish the parent for disciplining the child and then turn around and punish the parent for failure to control their child when they are often following whatever the current Dr. Spock government approved guidelines are. Discipline is a necessary part of growing up for many children. Some need sterner discipline than others. One shoe, One law does not fit all sizes.

At January 25, 2007 6:41 PM, Blogger pioneer98 said...

Excellent post. I would hope that cracking down on truancy and cerfews would be much easier to achieve, and may turn out to be very effective. Perhaps the most important part of authority and control are the appearance of authority and control.

At January 25, 2007 6:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few years ago, when you would drive by Annie Whittenmeyer, you would see the instructors making those kids do exercising out in the yard, and also running up those steep hills. They may still do that at a different time than before, but I don't see them out in the mornings like before. Did someone force them to stop?

At January 25, 2007 8:06 PM, Blogger The Colonel said...


But folks I am VERY SERIOUS about the solution. My "clicker" shows me over 350 individual folks check this site every day.

If 10% of you work the County Board, it would be HUGE. If 20% of you actually contacted your State Legislature, WOW.

Lets Do More then talk

At January 25, 2007 8:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It will either save the children or save our city. Meaning that either this plan would make children (and parents) mind the rules and teach them rules or they will move elsewhere because we mean business.

Okay - let's think. How and where do we begin. What is the first step?

May I suggest we ask the aldermen to look into the curfew once again. I think we don't have it anymore - can someone look this up or ask Mary Thee? If we do, then perhaps we then go to the PUblic safety meeting and ask for a plan to enforce this curfew.

What is it by the way?

At January 25, 2007 8:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh - be careful not to mention jamie Howard to the blog adminsitrator, he may shut ya down too. I am surprised Col that you are allowing this thread to continue considering that these are issues in the blighted areas of town and us hyenas will benefit from any improvements.

At January 25, 2007 11:56 PM, Blogger The Colonel said...

Anon 8:28 - Go ahead and get your own blog. I shut down three blog streams that are two weeks old. None of the comments had anything to do with the point of the original post.
If you hate Howard, knock yourself out. But I had folks posting shit about alderman, when the original post had to do something outside that stuff.
I rarely have time to check old post, and have been suprised at the 40+ comments on some of these.
Honestly, I shut some of these down, because I don't have time to babysit MORANS like you.
So go ahead, create your own BLOG and have fun.
But like the original Davenport Blogger said - summarized (The Fly), "In This Place - I Am King".

Good Luck - George

At January 26, 2007 4:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Conservative Demo here:
Not bad, Col. I'm referring of course to your "solution and action" article, not to any of the dildos who've gotten their responses in ahead of mine.

At January 26, 2007 7:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Name calling is inappropriate accourding to the Colonel. Except for Hyena. That is okay.

At January 26, 2007 7:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes -Hyena is defined as one who lives South of Locust and stands in the way of bad development.

At January 27, 2007 8:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The dildos and hyenas have been offering solid solutions for years but there is a lack of commitment from the city to impliment them. We started watch groups and attended meetings and go to city hall when we have bad properties, bad landlords, bad tenants, etc. We get not much help. When we see a bad project come into the area of town, we stand up and organize our opposition only to be criticized for doing so by the power that be, but we are supported by the general public. What we understand living in the SOLO area is that the approach to crime can't be sporadic and a band-aid. It must be a real long term commitment to cleaning up this area of town. We get the fact that if the place looks bad, it breeds crime. We understand that slumlords make money on criminals. We also understand that that city of Davenport in conjunction with the local not for profits promote concentration of poverty here. We also understand that if you concentrate poverty in one area of town, it is a bad thing that also adds to crime.

If you want to improve that crime situation, you should seek the input of the hyenas.

At January 28, 2007 12:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will say I think the solution is in fact on both sides of the equation, and believe it takes both sides to see! There are always "extremes" on both sides of every issues, ie: both sides are somewhat right AND wrong! The truth is that our city government has been SO out of touch for SO long that the citizens are unhappy with almost every aspect of local government! I challenge you to find ANY city that can survive that stress... Those unhappy with the current status quo need to make sure they vote in the next election, in fact we would be BEST served by a 100% turn out in the election! So there is my educated...and VOTE!!! Some of us are here to serve!!

At February 02, 2007 3:00 PM, Anonymous Joe American said...

To 12:24, Great comments and I'm behind you 110%. What the bloggers don't understand is that those that are best educated are current city employees and see the problems from the inside out. Hyenas are what they are but they have no teeth due to the fear of losing our jobs. You folks need to read and ask questions, then form your own opinions. There is alot of accurate info being offered here that you wouldn't get elsewhere.

At February 07, 2007 8:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Colonel,
Maybe the sun's not perfectly in it's place in the sky and all's right in the world (But then when EVER in human history has it been? ... Wait, don't tell me; you think it's the "1930’s to early 60’s") but I find some of your short-sighted, tunnel-vision, one-size-fits-all proposals to be nothing more than typical blogger bluster. Haymaking for the sake of "hearing" your own voice."

One fact you chose to ignore. At 16, by Iowa law (and most other states) a person is legally able to drop out of school (was also legal in the Good Ole days.) So your primary example is completely flawed. I'd suggest your outrage is misdirected (at a 17 year old doing something that in all ways was legal (as in most states the Iowa age of consent is 16, btw ... by law she can be in love with anyone she wants))

Juvenile curfews have been found to be unconstitutional by the Supreme Courts of Washington, Iowa (YES IOWA), and Hawaii, and have recently been struck down by federal courts in Washington, D.C., and San Diego, California. Maybe your one of those "kids don't have rights" types? Of course they do! It has been proven over and over that children have every right guaranteed to them in the Constitution and, more importantly, in the Bill of Rights. In 1969 case Tinker vs. Des Moines (aka Tinker vs. State of Iowa) it was ruled that youths have full First Amendment rights. INCLUDING: (1st Amendment) "Congress shall make no law respecting the right of the people peaceably to assemble." Translated into modern language, it says that "No laws can be passed that say that people can't hang out together." Curfews are almost always passed to prevent groups of young people from gathering ("assembling") in public places. But this is a Constitutionally-protected act. The Bill of Rights couldn't phrase that much more clearly.

Were you AT North Park Mall? Do YOU know what charges were applicable. Lemme guess, just throw 'em all in the pokey and let the population sort 'em out. Brilliant. Hopefully none of your kids or friend's kids were walking by and got mistakenly taken in and jailed under that premise. Another example of righteous reactionary indignation over something you didn't witness and when you don't really know what happened or what the exact circumstances or outcomes were.

"Good Old Days" myths are always fraught with false sentimentality. We're always in danger of ignoring the facts when we go down that Yellow Brick Road. Do you realize (though your implication that crime was lower in the 30s to 60s is true) that crime in Iowa has been dropping (precipitously) since 1975? So how bad can the systems we have in place be? (What? They're not making your backyard (SOLO - I work there so it's MY back yard too) into what you think it should be? Well we're right back to those basic issues of democracy, fairness and rights that you don't seem to understand.

Some of the details of your plan ... barely bear scrutinizing. A boys and girls home? What the heck? For what? How is that better than the (flawed, but still, what clearly better DETAILS are you offering?) juvenile welfare/criminal system that ALREADY EXISTS. That's no suggestion. It's, again, just empty Good Ole Dayisms. Can't you at least TRY to come up with something creative? Get off your high horse and get down there and mentor some kids in person. Establish and run a nighttime basketball league. Do something other than just sputter in circles. Do some actual good. Instead of this fake feelgood claptrap.

I don't really understand the bit about scrolling names across public access channels, but you clearly don't get some of the premises of law and constitutionality. What if there was a mistake? What if it were your kid? Is that really how you think he'd be best dealt with? (Though I find it hard to believe you have kids based of some of the half-cocked premises. But who knows.)

Do you not understand things like why most judges think mandatory sentences (one-size-fits-all) are wrong and bad (wait lemme guess, you're for those, too.) Same goes for a blanket policy that publicly libels people who have committed no crime.

Your solutions aren't solutions, they're nothing more than the cliche Good Ole Days feel-good myth that ignores facts and reality.

I'm just getting to middle age about now, but you sir, are just a grumpy old blowhard, with little truly constructive to offer. Yours is about or maybe not quite the depth of a Wundram column.

In the name of being constructive here are a few more specific suggestions:
Reduce class sizes.
Give kids more reasons to WANT to be at school with intuitive thoughtful programming.
Ensure availability of adequate housing.
Incentivise integration, especially as regards economic development.
Make great truly working public transportation a priority.

It seems clear to me that the subtext of ALL of your premises are basically that you think the people (businesses, etc) you deem undesirable or of questionable value or character (perhaps of a different race or nationality, but certainly of a different economic reality) should be controlled or dealt with as YOU see fit without regard to their rights under the CONSTITUTION. Apparently you also don't understand some basic tenets of justice and democracy. But to go into that would take days in your case. And I've already expended WAY too much energy on some old fart that thinks riling up other thoughtless curmudgeons is somehow as good as actually getting out there and working in the community and meeting the people you're disparaging and finding out the true facts of their real lives. Instead I can only shake my head in the expectation that sometime soon you'll post a blog about your idea to round up certain people and put them in a place, a ghetto, let's call it ... keep 'em safe you'll say, and control the criminal element.

Yeah, seems likely that you don't understand history either.

At February 08, 2007 7:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The mall is not a public place. We claim it is -- a great place to walk and meet up. It's a place where the public is invited, encouraged to go and mostly welcomed but as a privately owned and operated place much falls to the landlord owner to take care of. Simon gets that if it doesn't respond responsibly to trouble at Northpark then the public will go elsewhere, the good tenants will leave and Davneport will have one really big board up to add to the list. Then Simon can join the QCRPA as a slumlord. Chief Bladel would be wise to pick up the phone and call Simon rather than waiting for Simon to call him. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure -- a Good Ole Days slogan that's survived the test of time.

At February 14, 2007 12:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:04, You are too long winded and seem to like listening to yourself talk (blog). Get to the point quickly, because what your spewing reads like a text manual. BORING!

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