The Republican governor of New Jersey is the first elected official in this area with the courage to say the unthinkable, jail does not solve the drug problem. Jail may make the problem worse. Once Drug addiction takes hold, it is very difficult to escape. The only hope, if there is any, is drug treatment. Christie proposes to make treatment mandatory for addicts arrested for non violent crimes.
The Northeast Times this week has an interesting opinion piece by Joe Quigley on this very subject where he expounds on Christie’s proposal and applies it to Philadelphia, specifically Kensington and Somerset. That El stop is an interesting experience. Some people say the same thing about our local intersection of Frankford and Foulkrod. It is the same problem on a somewhat smaller scale.
Everybody I talk to at the civic meetings I attend acknowledges that drugs are a major driving force in the crime situation in Frankford. There are new and inventive ways to get people into the drug culture. See John Loftus’ piece of a few weeks ago in the Northeast Times for a new wrinkle (synthetic dope) in that situation. It’s time to finally get serious and make some progress in solving the problem rather than just throwing money at it.
It’s something that has to be done. Drugs are not going away, there is too much money in that industry. The only way forward it to reduce the demand by reducing the number of addicts.
3 thoughts on “Could Chris Christie Save Frankford and Foulkrod?”
“Everybody I talk to at the civic meetings I attend acknowledges that drugs are a major driving force in the crime situation in Frankford”.
I don’t agree that drugs are the major driving force in the crime situation here in Frankford or in other parts of Philly or in other large cities. Drugs may have been an issue, with regard to violent crime, 15 or 20 years ago. I’m aware that there are many drug sales going on here in Frankford but most of the violent crimes we read about today are not connected to drugs.
I believe the driving force in crime today is poverty, unemployment, and lack of education. If we can’t solve these problems, putting up a few “drug treatment centers” will do nothing and the crime we are seeing today will only grow.
Have to disagree Lorraine, if you look through the mug shots on any police district website you will see one thing in common with 95% of those arrested; the glassy eyes of a person under the influence. As for jail not working to solve problems I’ll agree with that, but that’s because it’s not utilized properly. The reason it doesn’t deter crime is because our jails our too easy and offer many people a better life than if they were on the streets. The second reason it doesn’t work is because we don’t keep the people there. 30 days in jail is nothing but a welcome rest to many addicts; it offers them a chance to get healthy and come back out and continue in there ways. It also doesn’t help having all these so-called ‘treatment facilities’ located right in the middle of the most drug infested open air market in the city. I have a way of cleaning up the streets of these gun toting drug dealers and it guarantees they would not return to that same street corner, or any street corner; but then I’d be the bad guy.
The problem with the “just keep them in jail” philosophy is we would have to build as many jails as there are McDonalds.
There is a growing number of people who are “unemployable”: meaning they can’t find a job that pays enough to support themselves let alone a family. Welfare benefits have been cut dramatically, thanks to Bill Clinton, so how are these people to survive? Not everyone in our society has what it takes to get a college degree. And what does a college degree get you in todays economic climate? Young people are graduating from college who can’t get a job and have over $30,000.00 in student loans staring them in the face.
Drug and alcohol addiction are the roads some people take in order to escape their reality. Is drug and alcohol addiction the reason why there is so much crime? Well that depends on how deep your really want to delve into the problem of crime. Do you think the crooks on Wall Street and those people responsible for the mortgage crisis had drug problems?
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