Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Tragedies vs. Statistics

"The death of one man is a tragedy. The death of millions is a statistic." Joseph Stalin

A Monday Sun article beautifully re-affirms Stalin's maxim. We are presented with a portrait of "suburban" violence as being deliberate and rational, whereas urban murders are "drug-fueled" and "impersonal."

The sentiment in the article seems to be that, in the 'burbs, you're likely to be killed by people you know, whereas in the City, you could be killed at any time, as part of random violence. Of course, as described in the article, the "highest profile homicide" in Baltimore County was carried out by hooligans from the City who were executing a police informant in Rosedale. Are we to believe that this sort of tit-for-tat is unknown when conducted solely within the City limits?

I suspect the article was cobbled together as a well-intentioned end of the year crime wrap-up, but the truth of the matter is that it's precisely the sort of piece that continues to lull enclaved suburbanites into the delusion that if they can just stay on good terms with their spouses and business partners, and avoid the hellish heart of darkness on the inner harbor, they can safely ignore the hundreds of victims sacrificed on the streets of Baltimore each year.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home