I lived in Miami Florida for many years and one thing I remember is you could not turn on your local news or open your Miami Herald without the Florida "death tolls" hitting you in the face and violent crimes, all different types....every single day.
So, using The Miami Herald, alone, for this little comparison, lets look at a couple of todays headlines.
Man dead after Coconut Grove shooting
Miami police responded to calls that shots were fired early Saturday morning near Grand Avenue and Douglas Road in Coconut Grove, and found a dead man and several rounds from an AK-47, police said.
Police spokesman Delrish Moss said the man was believed to be around 30 years old, and there was no description available for the shooter.
Police wouldn't release much information Saturday, but Moss said the shooting seemed to be retaliation for an earlier dispute.
Crime spree ended in Cooper City teen's killing
Police say Eric Rosado, the 14-year-old Cooper City High freshman shot dead this week while robbing a Naranja grocery store, had embarked on a crime spree with his lover: his best friend's mother, more than twice his age.That doesn't include the rapes or vehicular homicides or other robberies as well as a number of miscellaneous crimes.
Rosado and Ivona Sanchez, 32, along with Sanchez's sister, have been implicated in two separate robberies in mid-October.
Rosado was killed Tuesday by a Naranja store manager after police say the teen pointed a gun at him.
Crime. Pure and simple. In a city and state not at war and not in a state of reconstruction. We have crime, we have criminals, go to any major cities newspaper and you will find someone robbed someone else, someone killed someone else, someone raped someone, someone committed a violent crime against someone else.
Now we see a Times Online article, with hopes that the "surge" will bring about a day without death.
Not going to happen.
Where there are human beings, whether in a country at war or a country, city or state not at war, you are going to have deaths and violent crimes.
Violence and criminals.
It is whispered about at the margins of meetings and discussed in Washington parties where rumour is passed around with the wine and canapés. It even appears, fleetingly, to be fact.
“The day nobody died from violence in Iraq” is a date that has been much anticipated in the White House — where President Bush is desperate to hail the success of his surge of 30,000 troops this year. But no one can quite say when this event, longed for by most, if not all, people on the street corners of Baghdad, occurred.
“It was some time this week, wasn’t it?” says a senior military source. “Or maybe last week.” Another diplomatic official confidently asserted that there were “at least two such days this month”. When, exactly? “Not sure,” he replied.
Such foggy vagueness may be concealing a truly significant transformation on the ground in Iraq.
There have certainly been several days in the past month when no US or British soldiers were killed.
During a five-day stretch between October 19 and 23, there were no deaths among coalition forces. Although three US servicemen died from “non-hostile causes”, this was the longest period without combat deaths for nearly four years. And, between October 27 and 29, there were three more days without coalition deaths.
Such statistics do not take account of deaths among the Iraqi security forces or civilians. But Iraqis, too, have had days when no one in their ranks has died. On October 13, for instance, neither the coalition nor the Iraqi military suffered any deaths. But one Iraqi policeman was killed, along with four reported civilian deaths in Baghdad.
It is a two page article, read it, it is good news that things are going so well that they are hoping for a day without violence, but that type of hope makes no sense and is not based on rationality.
Where there are human beings, there is going to be violence.
Not a nice fact of life and doesn't say much for human beings, but it doesn't make that any less true.
If anyone is waiting for a day with no crime, no violence and no deaths before declaring success, then I gather we are declaring Miami, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York complete and utter failures also?
There is hard work ahead in Iraq. Rebuilding. Al-Qaeda will do everything in their power to set off a bomb in a highly populated area, or to grab innocent civilians off the street and kill them in a manner that will be guaranteed to make headlines.
Why would those headlines be any different than our own in our local newspapers.
Look at VA tech. Columbine? The Oklahoma city bombing years ago.
All of these things have happened here, at home, as well as hundreds of other atrocities on a daily basis.
Iraq will never be totally crime free.... just as our major cities will never go a day without reports of violent crime.
It is what it is and we need to start putting it into perspective.