Monday, January 7, 2013

Fighting Guns in Crown Heights


Just a great piece from CNN Radio on how Crown Heights Save Our Streets attempts to reduce gun violence -- really, really powerful stuff.  I particularly loved the quote from the Crown Heights resident about our violence interrupters: "When I see them, I know I'm good walking around the streets."  I also liked how Derick Scott pointed out that reducing gun crime isn't just a police problem or an economic development problem or a public health problem -- it is going to take a bunch of organizations, government and non-profit, working together to get things right.

Another piece that caught my eye in the days since I returned from a brief holiday break is "Philanthropy: You're Doing It Wrong," a strongly-worded admonishment to heavy-handed philanthropists from Reuters blogger Felix Salmon.  Many non-profits feel buffeted by onerous demands from donors, but these kinds of things are typically only discussed in hushed whispers, so it was nice to see a more public airing of the issues.

Finally, another sign that drug courts have truly entered the mainstream: I was about a fifth of the way into Michael Chabon's Telegraph Avenue when I was delighted to read that one of the central characters was referred to a drug court.  Chabon makes the reference without pausing to explain what a drug court is, basically assuming that the reader either already knows or can glean his meaning from the context.  It is a small thing, obviously, but I think an indication of how drug courts are continuing to embed themselves in the world outside of the criminal justice system.