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The guys on the street, theyre a community too.

Its the group, not the individual, theyre at terrible risk, theyre scared, have terrible norms and values pressed upon them. Theyre actually looking for a way out. Police, prosecutors, probation, parole, the restagencies that have to work together. 45% of homicide offenders and suspects were gang members, a quarter of all victims were. 75% of offenders and suspects had criminal records, averaging 8 records apiece. Beefs and vendettas (respect issues) violence almost all black on black. the violence is over, the bogus boyz were our first target, well be following the bodies, tell your crew to stand down June, july august 1997 there were 8 down from 41, an 80% reduction in homicides (Minneapolis) Stockton nortenos, sorenosthey were killing themselves in Stockton. 18 gang homicides in 1997, in 1998, there was 1. 42% reduction in gun homicide. New york was getting results, but at the cost of relentless policing, angry communities, awful incidents departments gun strategy was very large numbers of street stops in minority neighborhoods. The core realityits all about the groupwas very hard for police to take in. dont look at juveniles in isolation. I gave an interview to NPR saying that in all the years of youth-violence epidemic there were exactly no incidents of inner-city black kids shooting up a school for no reason, which meant that inner-city black kids used guns more responsibly than suburban white kids. Dont make threats that you cant follow through on the cards say if you get caught with a gun, youll go federal, thats not true Its all about the communities, the communities of law enforcement and the communities of dangerous black neighborhoods and how they saw each other, drove each other. If you want to get beyond stop it, if you want real, lasting change, if you want the cops and the neighborhoods and the streets to really see each other, hear each other, trust each other, you have to face how where we are now is infused with racial history There was an overwhelming consensus in the literature that what social science called informal social controlwhat your mom thinks, what your community thinksmeans a lot more than formal social control (youre more afraid of your mom than the cops). crossed-legs strike (turn in your guns or youre cut off)

Groups are at the heart of a lot of crime problems. People join gangs by easing into it (drift), not by suddenly deciding to join it. Pluralistic ignorance: the condition where everybody in a group believing everybody else in the group believes something nobody in the group believes. every single gang member may be thinking to himself, I hate this, nobody says anything, nobody knows. Nothing changes. Get them alone, and you hear what they really think (killings wrong). They never hear it from each other. If they do hear it from somebody brave enough, the group will shut him down, the group still thinks hes the only one, the mistake is reinforced still more. Fundamental attribution error: we see somebody do something and were inclined to think he chose that, wanted it, its an expression of who he is, his character. We dont think maybe he got forced into it we infer, attribute, intent and disposition on the basis of behavior. Cops see that little girl shot and think, these kids are monsters, no respect for human life and dont see that there was somebody shooting at them, they were terrified, the kid who pulled the trigger wanted nothing to do with it, he had his friends pushing on him, he puts the gun down and everybodys going to turn on him. The gangs see the cops putting their friends facedown on the street and think The police dont like black people, they dont see how hard theyre trying to protect the community, how scared they are, somebody shot at them last week but they held their fire, theyre still shaking. Theyre doing terrible things, so theyre terrible people; these communities are doing terrible things, so theyre terrible communities. We see violent neighborhoods, we think theres a subculture of violence, normlessness, anomie. legal cynicism: where legal cynicism was high, violence was high, there turns out to be a direct correlation between that alienation and crime. When the laws ugly, people dont go to the law when they need help. People handle things on their own. The government is doing this to us. This isnt happening. This is a conspiracy. Because black single mothers are succeeding, and the government of the U.S. cant stand that. This is the dominant public narrative: The government brings the drugs in so they can put our kids in jail so the cops will have to work and the private prisons can make their dividends. Mass incarceration is a tightly networked system of laws, policy, customs, and institutions that operate collectively to ensure the subordinate status of a group largely defined by race. Working together to stop the killing let each party see that the other wasnt what had been thought. The cops werent trying to lock everybody up, the community hated the killing, the gangs hated the killing. Drug enforcement is all public relationsthey need to show activity, nobody expects it to make any difference. Ceasefire basically disciplined the drug crews, made them put their guns down. It didnt do much about the rest. Its the street scene, the drug market, that tears the community, not the drug use. I know where white people go to do crime. But theyre quiet. You just have to get rid of the

street sales, the crack houses, the drive-through buyersthe overt market. Give them what the white folks already have. Once the area was quiet, you could get the word out that the first dealer to try to set up again was going to get maximum attention from everybody in law enforcement, you dont want to be that guy. Ceasefire: By April 03, there had been 10 black men aged 15-30 killed in Rochester. By April 04, there were none. The real issue was the police thought the community was completely corrupt, from top to bottom. The real issue was, the community thought the police were predators deliberately doing them horrendous harm. The real issue was the way the relationship between the police and community was being poisoned by toxic racial narratives. Here, things get ugly. The government is running a carefully organized racial conspiracy against black America is not as crazy as it sounds. Theres no slavery in the U.S. unless youre in jail or prison. The black codes, reconstructionit is living memory for many in the black community, and a collective memory for many more. Despite the civil rights movement, many black communities in America have neither peace nor tranquility. The black middle class grew dramatically, but both the absolute number of blacks living in poverty and their concentration in poor neighborhoods increased. The decline of manufacturing and the growth of outsourcing took away living-wage jobs. The increasing education requirements of jobs in the new economy left the marginally schooled further and further behind. In the 1970s, only 11% of Detroit blacks lived in highpoverty neighborhoods. By 1990, 54% did. Police routinely roll up on groups of blacks in public and order everybody to leave. They invariably do, which means that they know there will be consequences if they dont. its blatantly illegal. Communal anguish and anger is hard to define or express: it reinforces what everything else in the neighborhood, the lack of work, the useless schools, the decay, says every day. The outside world does not care, is dangerous, touches us only to do harm. Nothing says that more than sending the neighborhood to prison. if you want to destroy a civilization, lock it up, I heard a black man say. The point is that no community can survive many, most of its men having criminal records, surging back and forth between prison and home, damaged for life no matter what they want and do. No community can survive its young men growing up and seeing this and thinking, this is the way life is. Percentage of American adults locked up: white men, over 181 in 106. black men, over 181 in 15. black men, 20-341 in 9. Its the intersection of law enforcement and Americas Over-the-Rhines, Nickerson Gardens, that drives imprisonment. Men whove been locked up work less when they get out, earn less when they do work, than others just like them who avoided prison. Theyre less likely to marry, live with mothers of their children. In many states they cant vote (1 in 8 black men in the country have lost the franchise). The imprisoned leave almost 3 million children behind; they too are of

course concentrated in hard-hit black communities. One in nine black children has a parent in prison. Neighborhoods churn as men go away, come back, as neighborhood bonds fray, people dont know each other as much, dont trust each other, dont look out for each other. We have given americas poor black communities an iatrogenic condition. We have taken americas most vulnerable, most historically damaged, most economically deprived, most poorly educated, most stressed, most neglected, and most alienated neighborhoods, and imposed on them an epidemic of imprisonment. It is the one thing that will prevent anything else from working, make meaningless all of our aspirations for better schools and economic development and community uplift. Here is the perfect, awful, searing symmetry of it. Both sides look at the other and say, you want this. You are corrupt and hollow beyond all hope. Theyre both wrong. Its infinitely complicated but its also at its heart very simple. Law enforcement is not indifferent, not deliberately implementing a genocidal conspiracy. Troubled black communities are not all living off drug money, do not support violence, are not filled with sociopaths. Not true. Theres disproportionate treatment of blacks through the system. Its evil and wrong. The cops have turned on black people, written them off, written off their neighborhoods. This is really about the community of the cops and the community of the neighborhoodsthe first has given up on the second. An active drug market that was effectively shut down might turn into a self-sustaining quiet neighborhood after a little while. The plan: get a drug case ready to go, then dont arrest the dealer. If we can close the market for a while, get the community saying we dont do that here, if we can come up with an enforcement strategy that shuts that first guy down when we have to, we can keep it. I know from personal experience there is a large drug problem on the other side of the Interstate. An entirely different class of people is involved, middle class professionals who continue their drug habits in relative security. Serious conflation of drug dealing and drug use. We never ask the community what it wants from us; we say, were the police, we know how to do our job, get out of the way and let us do it. We scorch the earth and roll back on out and think weve done a good job. We say, look at all the arrests weve made. Look at all the warrants weve served. We stand tall next to tables full of coke and cash. But it doesnt work. It doesnt stop the drugs and violence. It all comes back, we go home and the people were supposed to serve, the people who need out help the most, are no better off, and that much more alienated than before. Almost everybody hates whats going on. Ive come to understand that even most of the guys on the street hate whats going on. What the guys on the corner need to hear from the community is a steady, simple stand: we dont want this. Nobody can set standards for your community from the outside. If the only people saying dont shoot, dont sell drugs are from the outside, in uniform, the streets wont listen. The cops have no standing.

Police: Im sorry, I know weve let you down, we havent protected you, what weve done hasnt worked. And weve done bad things. Community healing: education, remedial education, job training, job placement, maybe drug treatment. Good clothes, counseling on how to do a resume, how to do an interview, how to dress, transportation. Also: influentialssomebody in the life of each dealer who cared about him, was respected by him. well, west end is just bad. Because west end is full of people; people are precious Do you know how powerful that is, for the police department to hold a charge? Do you know how much they believe that there is redeemable value in each one of you? if youre clean, if youre acting right, if you listen to what hes saying, he will get you a job. He will help you. We will help you. Revelations: Drug dealers are rational. The cops can see the community in a new way. The community can see cops in a new way. Both sides want the same things. Look like it does work. We took it on the road. How to stop drug markets: the community said, we care about you, you need to stop this, well help you. Law enforcement said, youre done, dont make us come after you and finish the job. The year before the Gathering, in 2007, there were 124 drug arrests around Terace and Bedell; in 2008, after the Gathering in early January, there were sixteen, in 2009 there were 2. Im not getting what I need, Im desperate, I need a job, Im not getting anywhere, Ive been paying my dads rent, at least when I was on the corner I could take care of him, I know I was doing wrong, I cant go back, but hes about to lose the house, Ive got a baby coming, I cant take care of my girlfriend . Im going to be a radiologist. What is going on in america has been going on for far too long. The 2.2 million people in prison, the children and husbands and wives left broken behind, the lawless cops on the streets, the hero cops blowing through doors to almost no purpose at all, the dying kids whod rather protect their killers than talk to the law, the community silence about the kids killing kids, the communities who see cops as the enemy and the cops who see the communities as the enemy A central, but wrong conviction: to do something about crime, we have to go through other things. It might take 15 years to retool public schools, another 15 to get first wave of kids out so you have to live with that for 3 decades. Thats the plan? The logic of the prevention analysis makes it impossible to implement (get rid of root causes to stop crime that would take way too longracism, economics, education, health care, supporting families, addressing risk factors that travel with kids movement into crime, providing treatment and counseling and mentoring). All you need to prevent those killings is to change the behavior of the fifty people who did them. The next step is to get to the gangs, change their behavior and prevent killings. Thats Operation Ceasefire. Ceasefire is about not locking people up. They bend over backward not to do that.

Theyre motivated by an understanding of the damage locking people up does to them, their families, their communities. They sit down with likely offenders and say, Heres what were going to do if you make us, please dont. they use deterrence to protect those most at risk from those who are most likely to hurt them, to provide a safe way out of hugely dangerous situations. For somebody to say, What are you doing about prevention? the insistence that any move by law enforcement is suppression puts these new strategies out of bounds by definition. The false divide between prevention and law enforcement is not only mistaken but catastrophically misguided. Having to lay on hands and lock ppl up is a failure of moral power. The more that power fails, the more the laying on of hands is needed. The law itself is designed to do prevention. Having to act means that that prevention failed. Even in the most dangerous neighborhoods, people do the right thing. Guns are far from the preferred method of settling beef (informal social control). Legitimacy turns out to rests on 2 key supports. One of that people feel the law is touching them equitably, not as product of bias; one is the quality of touch, that theyre being handled with courtesy and respect. Offenders do respect the law; its the officers they dont respect. If youre serious about prevention, legitimacy is the game changer. Actual enforcement, locking people up, is suppression. Deterrence is prevention; it means that neighborhoods trust the law, trust the police, think theyre being treated fairly and well, will let law shape their behavior. Legitimacy is moral power. State of nature is every man for himself, but social contract gives security. The people have to be protected, the power has to be used well and wisely. Civil society, community, doesnt have to be perfect, it can take all kinds of strain, but it has to be us. It cant be us and them. The cops just roll up on you, when all youre doing is walking down the street, said another. I dont go outside my house they follow you in their car, staring, like they want you to do something. In cities all across the country, people in these neighborhoods dont talk to police. For 22 homicides in 2002, by 2005 not a single one had resulted in a homicide conviction. Vendetta is taking place all over the country, and no one is doing anything to fix it. Its not about the cases, the prosecutions, the clearance rates. Its that we cant, and wont, ever get anywhere when the neighborhoods feel like this about the law. If we change the way law enforcement deals with these neighborhoods, we can win it in short time. Stop acting out the worst racial stereotypes on both sides. We create the calm and the trust and relationships we need to do the deeper work, get the schools working, help families, build businesses, all the things you cant do when things are as they are now. Stop the violence that terrorizes many black and minority communities, the chaos of drug markets, the devastation, the racial divide thats causing. White neighborhoods are equally culpable. Their crime problem is just as bad as in other neighborhoods; school surveys show that white students are far more likely to use drugs than black students are. The meaning of the social service side, was less about getting people jobs than about resetting, creating, legitimacy. It said to the neighborhoods