Stepping back from the carnage that is appearing on our TV screens, it appears this city will spend many years trying to recover from the recent events. Before the smoke clears away I want to make several points to put all of this in perspective.
The police are not perfect. However, most do an outstanding job of protecting the citizens and their property. Like every occupation, there are a few bad apples who must be found and punished. But to burn out and strip the neighborhoods of businesses and housing that supports the people, everyone suffers and is not warranted.
The city government has much to answer for. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake seemed to be unprepared to fulfill her requirements to keep her city safe. Her policy of standing back and letting the rioters destroy businesses will hurt the city for decades to come.
I really didn’t want to go here, but I must to tell the whole story. Past actions by the President of the United States and his Attorney General layed the groundwork for the anarchy displayed in Baltimore. Obama, soon after his first inauguration, had his famous “Beer Summit” where he blamed a policeman for arresting a drunken man for trying to break into a home at night. Since that time, through his Attorney General, Eric Holder, the Federal Government has attacked the police at every turn. With the lack of respect for those in uniform, no wonder their effectiveness has suffered. The Administration has made our best and finest the first target in every situation.
The city of Baltimore will not recover from the rioting for a very long time, if ever. This raises an issue that needs discussion. In this country, we help those less fortunate who need a helping hand. Over the years we have developed an ever larger group of people who spend their entire lives on the government dole. When we have seceding generations that follow the same path, society has a problem.
What happened in Baltimore, and other cities recently, goes beyond the violence of a few days. The career welfare people are doing all they can to make sure that others who are trying to work their way out of poverty do not succeed. When low-income poor start a business to try to escape their lot in life, their neighbors feel the need to destroy their attempt to better themselves. When young men and women find employment with these businesses, with the dream of someday following their bosses into success, those dreams are shattered when the businesses are stripped and burned. The lesson on the street is to start the business away from the neighborhoods where they grew up and lived. The lesson is to provide nothing for the old neighborhood and leave. Or worse, give up and accept a life at the bottom of society. These bottom feeders, who constantly try to destroy anyone who wants a better life, will stop Baltimore from recovering.
There are some wonderful stories surrounding the riots. The mother who chased her son back home and removed him from the street punks who were destroying the city. Lets not forget the boy who was handing out bottle water to the police. People from the neighborhood created a buffer line to protect the police from the rioters. These stories will hopefully be played by the media in the days to come.
Capital has a way of flowing to the most productive place. Areas of the city have seen the local economy destroyed. Without economic activity, capital will find somewhere else to go for a better and safer return. Government will flow capital into the burned out areas but looking at cities like New Orleans, it will not be successful. The most successful redevelopment plans usually dislocate the urban poor and replaces them with young, upper middle class people who generate robust economic activity. The urban poor who are flushed from their neighborhoods are relocated to areas as bad as or worse than the neighborhoods they left.