DETROIT – It’s a funny thing about big cities in America.
Many have been reduced to terrorist zones, due to a dense population of heavily-armed, well financed, and very dangerous criminals.
They walk about brazenly, assaulting people, stealing property and destroying everything in their path, because they know neighbors are too frightened to turn them in. They have little fear of local law enforcement, because there aren’t enough police officers to make a real difference, and a percentage of existing cops can be paid to look the other way.
Yet a clear majority of responsible residents – police officers and civilians alike – tend to overwhelmingly favor gun control laws. They say there are too many weapons on the streets already, and citizens arming themselves will only exacerbate the problem.
But there is one high-level law enforcement officer who understands that citizens need to protect themselves, because the cops can’t always be there on time.
Detroit Police Chief James Craig caused a stir this month when he appeared on the cover of America’s 1st Freedom Magazine, published by the National Rifle Association.
In a story titled “A Show of Courage in Detroit,” Craig says that private citizens need the ability to arm and protect themselves, particularly in dangerous cities like Detroit.
The story apparently caused a bit of a stir, particularly since the NRA is not terribly popular in leftist Detroit. So Craig called a press conference Monday to reiterate what he told the magazine.
“I’m pro-safety. I’m pro-life,” Craig said, according to the Detroit Free Press. “I’m pro law-abiding citizens staying alive, having the ability to protect themselves in dangerous situations.”
The article addresses various problems in Detroit, including slow response times to emergency calls, a police force with numbers decimated by layoffs, and a municipal bankruptcy that prevents the hiring of many new officers.
Given all of those unfortunate conditions, Craig clearly understands why many citizens choose to keep guns for self-protection.
“Critics will say, ‘Well Chief, are you saying that the Detroit Police Department can’t do its job?’ That is absolutely an untrue, inaccurate statement,” Craig said.
But Craig also admitted that his department is limited in its ability to respond instantly in a crime-filled city.
“Police officers cannot and will not be on every corner, in front of every house, every business in the city,” he said. “That’s just not realistic.”
Last year Detroit had 15 killings ruled justifiable due to self-protection, the Free Press said. There were 333 murders. This year there have already been 13 justifiable homicides in the city.
Sometimes just the firing of a weapon is enough to scare the bad people away. On Feb. 17, a woman said she heard “thuds” at her back door and fired two shots into a wall, which prompted the intruders to flee, according to the Free Press.
Sometimes deadly force is necessary. On Feb. 28 a woman fired two shots at a man crawling through a bedroom window, according to the Free Press. The intruder died.
“This is not about inciting vigilantism, because in my view when you talk about vigilantism, you’re talking about someone who has made a decision to do law enforcement’s job – go out and enforce the law,” Craig said. “This is not that at all. This is about self-defense, protection, an imminent threat to life.”
Craig probably understands a simple but chilling truth: If government forced law abiding citizens to give up their guns, the only two groups with weapons would be the police and criminals.
The criminals are certainly not going to hand over their weapons, just because the law says so. They’re criminals, remember? And the cops can be helpful if the cops are around, but that’s not always the case.
The bottom line is that it would probably be stupid for any decent person to live in Detroit without having a gun for protection.
If the liberals find that troubling, oh well. They can sit back in their fancy suburban homes, fairly confident that nobody is going to bother them or their property. People who live in Detroit tend to be poor, so there’s no escape from their crime-infested neighborhoods.
They just have to be ready to protect themselves when danger lurks, because nobody will be herding the bad guys out of their neighborhoods any time soon.