My best friend happens to live in Washington Heights, on Pinehurst Avenue. He hasn't gone out and said that the claims of plummeting crime are an utter fallacy, but he does admit that he feels safer now than he did even a few years ago. I've been to the neighborhood several times, mostly at night (going again tonight), and I like it. When I went into Fort Tryon Park with him one night, there were still a lot of people walking around.Real Estate hype, making the mayor look good. People notice, but no one gives a shit. People in the high crime areas have definately noticed. I remember the Washington Heights community bashed Bloomberg over his claims on dropping crime.
I'm not doubting you, Bx. I know that there are a lot of untruths and half-truths to the news about the drop in crime. But there's no doubt in my mind that the city has generally changed for the better. (On a personal note: weren't you on SkyscraperCity for a while? I like you; it's good that you challenge us.)
Even if shootings can be covered up, murders themselves are hard to "disappear" (death certificates and all), as are GTAs (a report of a stolen vehicle needs to be filed). Assaults, robberies and thefts are very easy to gussy up, no doubts there; perhaps the same can be said with burglaries. And rapes are ridiculously undercounted nationwide anyway. Maybe at the start of 2006 I'll begin a tally of all the murders reported in the news and see how it stacks up compared to the NYPD's statistics.
In any case, however, I'm wondering if maybe it isn't a bad idea to start easing restrictions on private ownership of firearms. I feel fine without a gun, but far be it from me to deny anyone else their right to defend themselves. What does everyone think, or is that a subject better consigned to a separate thread?