I will admit that I am not a regular on our many community listservs. From time to time, I log into my Yahoo! account to see what “virtual Capitol Hill” has to offer. Emails offering tips and tricks for raising kids or tackling the school lottery seem to take up storage space on the MoTH listserv. My local ANC listserv lets me know everything that is opening and closing along the H Street Corridor. But the listservs that get my attention–and lately get my blood boiling–are the MPD and Newhilleast lists. And it’s not chickens or other petty arguments that get me and others worked up these days: no, it’s the crime in our community. And lately, it seems (albeit anecdotally) to be totally out of control!
I’m a regular at Amazon.com—that Amazon prime membership pays for itself if you have at least one kid in diapers—but lately I am reluctant to place an order outside of my regular deliveries. Why? Because I’ve had more packages stolen then I care to admit (or can count—I think I’m over five for the past year and that is five too many). And I’m not the only one. Just now, I read a handful of messages from neighbors complaining about everything from packages stolen when they were home—I blame FedEx for this, as they have an uncanny way of dropping packages in obvious locations but not alerting the homeowner by simply ringing the doorbell—to witnessing and reporting a package theft with no follow-up from officers.
If you are a criminal, come to Capitol Hill, a lovely community with historic homes, bicycles with weak locks, storage sheds behind scalable fences, breakable car windows– and now, delivered packages! Oh, you can also find lots of smartphones, which I suspect you can take to your local Game Stop.
You know what, criminals, officers, council members with exploratory committees? I’M MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE! And I demand that your response be more than a community meeting, where you tell me crime is statistically down and then teach me ways to not be a victim. Stop blaming me! I don’t talk on my phone when walking alone and I ask for signatures when I have packages delivered, preferably by UPS because their drivers are wonderful. While you are at it, stop making excuses and stop burying your heads in the sand! This is going to take more than a community meeting. It’s going to take more cops on the beat. It’s going to take more training for officers and 911 operators. It’s going to take prosecuting criminals and putting them behind bars.
See, we can blame the victim for being in the wrong place at the wrong time; we can blame a poor education system or a poor judicial system; we can blame any number of things, but isn’t it better to just do something about it?
Have you been the victim of a crime? Take our poll and then tell us more in the comments section.