Editorial: Violence impacts everyone in city
Recent shootings in Salisbury have been targeted rather than random, police say. Unless you’re a member of one of the two warring groups, there’s no reason to panic or live in fear.
Still, city residents can hardly dismiss this violence as “not my problem.” Someone could get killed; even a gang member is someone’s son, brother or father. Death can devastate a family. Gun violence has a ripple effect touching families, neighborhoods, cities and more.
Bullets can go astray and hit people for whom they were never intended — such as the 7-year-old boy shot dead at a birthday party in Charlotte earlier this month, or 13-year-old Treasure Feamster killed outside a Salisbury party in 2007.
If the Feamster shooting in 2007 was Salisbury’s wakeup call to the presence of gangs, this month’s shootings are a sad reminder that gangs continue to sow seeds of violence in our neighborhoods.
Kudos to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office and the Salisbury Police for working together to patrol city streets and tamp down the recent outbreak. City police need more manpower and equipment to counter the ever-present threat of gang violence. When city and county departments can pool their resources and work collaboratively, we’re all better off.
Fighting gang violence is a never-ending task. A young person’s path starts being determined as soon as he leaves the womb, influenced by the interactions he has, the words he hears, the food he eats and the resources in his home. Community has a big impact on young people, too. Do neighbors watch out for each other’s children? Do people in the neighborhood feel productive and have hopes for a good future, or are they unemployed and resentful?
The violence in our streets is symptomatic of a deeper problem. Who has the answers?