In the high-crime areas of Chicago, everyone seems to be interested in fighting crime, but who’s accountable for the problem? The answer isn’t as easy as everyone thinks. “Revitalizing Black Neighborhoods” points to civic, race, community, and political factors that lead to murder. This collection of articles by urban commentator Mary L. Kay explores the positive alternatives that help people build whole, functioning communities. Often, effective strategies start with a few residents taking responsibility for their own neighborhood and refuse to let the problem become part of the urban fabric. People learn to become competent in reading in order to defend themselves against the criminals. Instead of waiting around to wait for the cops to do their job, they learn to do it themselves. Men acquire skills such as welding and carpentry to better protect their families and the neighborhood. Laws and codes can be made more effective by people within the community working together to implement them. Most of the residents who live in crime-ridden neighborhoods are young males, and in order to attract women, a society-wide campaign to marry or attract women by supporting men to start careers, create decent families, and move away from abusive homes is necessary. If they’re to survive and thrive, those who live in these urban areas have to be given the wherewithal to build lives and to create a neighborhood in which good citizenship can thrive.
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