Buffalo Police Get Failing Grade for Actions to Address Gun Violence
By Kat Massey
It’s undeniable that doing the same thing the same way -- while expecting different results -- is an insensible prescription for failure. Now, to the point. The actions of the Buffalo Police Department (BPD) -- to address the gun violence - have been with longevity -- ineffective, essentially inappropriate and disappointing (to be polite).
Sadly, according to news media reports, 37 people were shot in July. At year-to-date (August 23), there have been 29 homicides and26 of them occurred from guns. There were 5 killings by mid-August, alone.
The bullets have not discriminated. Men and women have lost their lives. Two young boys remain hospitalized (August 29) with life-threatening bodily damage. (One of them was shot in the head while just sitting in a car. The other child has some paralysis and major speech problems.)
The gun attacks are rapidly increasing. Figuratively, guns seem to be almost vending machine accessible. It obvious the BPD needs immediate assistance from outside the department.
There must be relevant, expanded initiatives far beyond the bogus guns buy-back and periodic raids when there is a brief shower of grant money. Main source gun dealers seem untargeted. If so, the results have not been reported on the 11 o’clock news.
Territorial issues must not prevent the BPD from seeking HELP from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). Years ago during a television news interview, an ATF agent stated the bureau must be invited by local law enforcement. That invitation from the BPD is overdue and definitely justified. (Also, the FBI should be included.)
Increasingly, it seems there’s an unrealistic expectation that citizens need to be crime stoppers/solvers. That’s the realm of those officers depended upon “to protect and serve” (even though the mission statement has been downgraded to “improve the quality of life in the City of Buffalo.”) Of course there is an understandable reluctance for witnesses to come forward. (In one instance a female witness left town but she was assassinated.)