The truth will set you free . . . if you are free to tell the truth. That truth is: Killington.
After being graduated from high school in Mt Sterling, Kentucky, I was more than ready to leave the small town and head for Lexington, and the University of Kentucky. It wasn’t like I could afford Hahvahd, anyway. I lived in the Bluegrass State’s second-largest city from 1971 through the end of 1984, before moving to the Old Dominion for better job prospects. Yeah, I tend to concentrate on foul, fetid, fuming, foggy, filthy Philadelphia when it comes to crime, but it seems that while Killadelphia sounds more closely like Philadelphia than Killington sounds like Lexington, they’re becoming a bit too much alike.
by Christopher Leach | Friday, September 2, 2022 | 7:14 AM EDT | updated: 8:05 AM EDT
Lexington police are investigating the second reported homicide of the week after a man was fatally shot early Friday.
The shooting happened in the 2000 block of Devonport Drive, near the intersection of Alexandria Drive and Versailles Road, around 12:55 a.m. Lt. Joe Anderson with the Lexington Police Department said responding officers found a man with a gunshot wound when they arrived at the scene.
The man was sent to the hospital, where he later died, according to Anderson. His identity will be announced by the Fayette County coroner after next of kin is notified. . . . .
There’s a little more at the original.
In 2019, Lexington set its all-time homicide record of 30. Then, in 2020, Lexington broke that with 34 murders, and, in 2021, set it again at 37 dead bodies littering the city’s streets.
The city is on the slow side when it comes to putting information up on its websites. The city’s homicide investigations page hasn’t, as of this writing at 8:34 AM EDT on Friday, September 2nd, even included the 32nd killing, which occurred before noon, two days ago. But it does include the homicide investigations from 2021 on the same page, and the 33rd killing last year occurred on November 20th, 79 days later in the year.
Unlike Philadelphia, which averages almost 1½ homicides per day, much smaller Lexington, 321,793 versus 1,576,251 residents, averages only 0.1346938775510204 per day, or one every 7.42 days. That means that statistical projections are a bit more iffy; with one homicide every week, just a couple of weeks in which no one bothers to kill someone else can really throw off projections. Something as simple as a rainy weekend can keep the bad guys indoors more, and out on the bad street corners less.
Nevertheless, the current numbers work out to a projected 49.16 murders for the year.
So, what’s changed? As we noted on Thursday, Mayor Jim Kenney (D-Philadelphia) was blaming Philly’s huge homicide record on Republicans, on everyone but himself. Just as in Philly, Lexington has been operating on the same firearms control laws for years, so it isn’t a change in Kentucky’s constitutional carry gun control laws. A lot of big city politicians tried to blame the 2020 surge in killings on COVID-19, or the reaction to the unfortunate death-during-arrest of methamphetamine-and-fentanyl-addled convicted felon George Floyd, but that was two years ago! COVID-19 restrictions mostly eased by the end of 2020, and certainly by mid 2021, so it’s difficult to blame them. In Philly, the homicide rate surged from 1.4578 per day at the end of the Labor Day holiday weekend, to 1.7155 for the period from September 7 through December 31, 2021, when the vast majority of COVID-19 restrictions had been lifted and the public schools had been opened, albeit with mask mandates.
Something else has happened, something cultural that legitimizes bad guys carrying guns and blowing away people for trivial reasons. Yes, Kentucky’s firearms laws are less strict than Pennsylvania’s but Lexington’s 2021 homicide rate of 11.498 per 100,000 population was far lower than Philly’s 35.654.¹
Lexington’s homicide investigations page does not specify the race or ethnicity of murder victims, and the murder victims are specifically excluded from the city’s non-fatal shootings investigations page. But of the 87 non-fatal shootings listed as of August 27, 2022, 16, 18.39%, of the victims are listed as white, 5, 5.75%, are listed as Hispanic, which can be of any race, and 66, 75.86%, are listed as black.
Lexington’s population are not 75.86% black.
At some point, we have to look at the numbers, because numbers don’t lie. Pointing out these numbers, as I have previously, will be denounced as raaaaacist, but, unlike a lot of bloggers, I am retired, and have no job from which I can worry about being ‘canceled’. I can tell the unvarnished truth, the way so many others cannot.
And the truth is important: you cannot solve a problem if you are unwilling to identify the problem correctly, and it is wholly politically incorrect to identify the problem correctly these days.
Well, here’s another truth: everybody does know the problem, but as is obvious in Philly, most would rather ignore the fact that the homicide problem in our cities is primarily a black problem. So many would rather simply accept a ‘disproportionate’ number of murders among black city dwellers than admit that the problem exists within our black communities.
There is, however, another problem which jumps out at me, and it’s a problem that today’s left really don’t want to admit. The left believe that one change necessary to combat global warming climate change is greater population density, more people living closer to their jobs, not having as long commutes, and a greater ability for more people to take subways, trains and buses to work than their evil personal cars. But if there’s one real physical difference between Philadelphia and Lexington, it’s that the poorer areas in Lexington are not the rowhouse type of neighborhoods that dominate much of Philly. Even in the poorer neighborhoods in Lexington, housing is far more likely to be physically separate dwellings, far more likely to have a bit of yard between houses. This is not to say that there are no rowhouses in Lexington; there are, though interestingly enough many of them are in the gentrified areas north of the University of Kentucky campus, on South and North Limestone Street, along parts of Upper Street. And if you are really, really angry at someone, if you live further apart, it will take you longer to go home and get your gun — assuming that you aren’t carrying it — than in Philly, and those few extra seconds may be the ones which give you the time to realize, hey, if I blow that rat bastard away, I might just spend the rest of my life in Eddyville.
Could that be part of the reason that heavily rural Carbon County, population 64,749, where I lived in Pennsylvania, under the same gun control laws as Philly, went many years straight with zero homicides, even though it’s an area with a lot of hunters and most people own firearms? As nearly as I could find — the data are scattered, not consolidated, and it’s possible I missed something — there was one murder in Lehighton in 2004 and another in 2006, and those were the only murders in Carbon County from 2001 through 2019. Other than going up Broadway in Jim Thorpe, there are very few rowhouses. When the murder rate in Philadelphia was 22.197 per 100,000 population, in 2019 — boy, how low that seems compared to now! — and zero in Carbon County, with both under the same firearms laws, perhaps, just perhaps, it might be considered that the firearms laws aren’t really the problem.
Those two murders? One was a strangulation and beating of a mother by her son, and the other a stabbing following an argument.
But, at some point, we have to look at race and population density, both things the left are horrified to contemplate as being contributing factors, when it comes to crime in general, and murder specifically.
¹ – The math: 37 homicides in 2021 ÷ 3.21793 = Lexington’s 2021 homicide rate; 562 homicides in 2021 ÷ 15.76251 = Philly’s homicide rate, expressed in homicides per 100,000 population.
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