Reducing crime takes teamwork

Published 12:46 am Friday, November 16, 2007

Measuring crime is easy. Figuring out how to reduce it is much more complicated. But the answers get easier when we work together.

Natchez community leaders are doing a good job of putting their heads together and figuring out how to address the problem in a constructive way.

Nothing earth-shattering has come from the recent series of meetings, but the underlying causes of crime are much too complicated to be solved after a meeting or two.

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The solution begins with constructive dialog — and fortunately, our community has already begun that key first step.

In the past such discussions have often erupted into heated arguments in which allegations of racism and classism are thrown about without much regard for their impact.

But when we focus on our differences, we’re doomed to fail to reach the goal.

Like a first-year football team, we all need to join forces, focus on the commonalities and push together to reach the goal line.

In the end, we expect the group will find the remedy for the perception of a growing crime problem will be multi-faceted.

Police need to be given more money, more respect and more support. They need help from the community, too. It’s difficult — if not impossible — to solve crime without the help of those people who are not wearing a badge.

And, perhaps, if we’ve not already done so, we need to think about involving local churches into the mix. What a better way to minister to the community than by stepping up in a time of need?

Churches are often the most underused resources in our community and that’s a shame.

If we truly want to reduce crime, we all need to work together, using the collective power of our hearts and minds.