Will anything change in light of the disturbing daylight shooting of boxing coach Scott Huggins at 43rd & Capitol? Although the brazen nature of the crime is stunning, my initial reaction is that this is not new. It may capture our attention because the victim was an outsider - someone passing through - and not an inner city resident to whose plight the larger community (and much of the political leadership within the city) has become inured.
So far, the attitude of both surburbanites and, to be candid, much of the area's African-American political leadership, is that nothing can be done. The former, quite properly, denounces the thugs who commit these crimes, while the latter tends to discuss anything but the real problem. The absence of jobs; the fact that racism, while greatly diminished has not been entirely eliminated; the high rate of incarceration among African-American males - all of this is important, but none of it can be resolved until the central city becomes a place where people can live and work without fear and raise a family without losing their children to wild streets.
It shouldn't take the shooting of a guy from Waukesha to get our attention. We should have recognized a crisis long ago.
But what do we do?