(TMU Op-ed) — Baltimore Mayor Jack Young thinks allowing for public ‘fight clubs’ or boxing rings may reduce gun violence in the city. Young posits that giving people an opportunity to blow off some steam would prevent a simple beef from escalating into a gun battle.
Young discussed his unusual suggestion during a public speech over the weekend:
“You know gun violence is something that has been plaguing this city for 10 years, and you know the murder rate in this city and non-fatal shooting rate in this city has increased. I’m not happy with it and neither should the citizens of Baltimore… There’s mediation. You know if they really want to settle them, we can have them down at the civic center—put a boxing ring up and let ’em go a box it out. The best man win and the beef should be over. Those are some of the things I’ve been thinking about—hoping we can get these people to put these guns down.”
“Gun violence is unnecessary. We can find other means to settle our disputes.” @mayorbcyoung says people should put their guns down and their gloves up in a boxing ring to settle disputes. @wbaltv11 #wbal pic.twitter.com/yq3rux53vi
— Karen Campbell (@KarenCampbellTV) June 3, 2019
The idea of quelling violence in an unconventional way isn’t unique to Baltimore. As the Mind Unleashed reported last week, public punching bags were installed throughout Manhattan, in hopes of giving New Yorkers a way to vent some of their daily frustrations.
And while Baltimore’s mayor is correct that mutual combat should be permitted and would allow people to blow off steam before their feud potentially becomes deadly, his suggestion overlooks the true root cause of the violence. The vast majority of the homicides that occur in Baltimore, and other cities throughout the U.S., are a direct result of the drug war and the complications that come along with the black market drug trade.
As we saw during alcohol prohibition in the past, banning an inanimate object actually creates an incentive for people to find and distribute the banned object on the black market.
Since there is no accountability or means of peaceful dispute resolution within the black market, buyers and sellers are forced to resort to violence as their sole means of handling disagreements.
Eventually, this violence can spill over into the everyday world, affecting everyone’s lives. No one could imagine Budweiser and Miller Lite in a back alley gunfight, but less than a century ago during alcohol prohibition, distributors of the drug were involved in shootouts on a regular basis, just as drug gangs are today.
Of course, all of this violence came to an immediate end when alcohol was legalized. However, it was not long before the establishment found a new crusade in the drug war, which allowed for a continuation of the same policy but with different substances.
Surprisingly, there are a significant number of police officers in the United States who are working to end prohibition because they have recognized that it does not work and actually causes other problems in society, namely an increase in crime and gang violence.
One of the leading groups of law enforcers working to end the drug war is Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). With how bad gang violence is in Baltimore, it should come as no surprise that a retired Baltimore police officer, Maj. Neill Franklin, served as the executive director of LEAP for several years.
Franklin is among a growing number of law enforcement officials who understand the direct connection between gang violence and the drug war. Perhaps LEAP should call a meeting with Mayor Young and give him some tips on how gang violence can actually be reduced in the city of Baltimore.
Dolphin Swims Through Louisiana Neighborhood in Aftermath of Hurricane Ida
A Louisiana family was shocked to find a dolphin swimming through their neighborhood in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.
Amanda Huling and her family were assessing the damage to their neighborhood in Slidell, Louisiana, when they noticed the dolphin swimming through the inundated suburban landscape.
In video shot by Huling, the marine mammal’s dorsal fin can be seen emerging from the water.
“The dolphin was still there as of last night but I am in contact with an organization who is going to be rescuing it within the next few days if it is still there,” Huling told FOX 35.
Ida slammed into the coast of Louisiana this past weekend. The Category 4 hurricane ravaged the power grid of the region, plunging residents of New Orleans and upwards of 1 million homes and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi into the dark for an indefinite period of time.
Officials have warned that the damage has been so extensive that it could take weeks to repair the power grid, reports Associated Press.
Also in Slidell, a 71-year-old man was attacked by an alligator over the weekend while he was in his flooded shed. The man went missing and is assumed dead, reports WDSU.
Internet users began growing weary last year about the steady stream of stories belonging to a “nature is healing” genre, as people stayed indoors and stories emerged about animals taking back their environs be it in the sea or in our suburbs.
However, these latest events are the surreal realities of a world in which extreme weather events are fast becoming the new normal – disrupting our lives in sometimes predictable, and occasionally shocking and surreal, ways.
Mom in LA Suburbs Fights Off Mountain Lion With Bare Hands, Rescues 5-Year-Old Son
A mother in Southern California is being hailed as a hero after rescuing her five-year-old son from an attacking mountain lion.
The little boy was playing outside his home in Calabasas, a city lying west of Los Angeles in the Santa Monica Mountains, when the large cat pounced on him.
The 65-pound (30 kg) mountain lion dragged the boy about 45 yards across the front lawn before the mother acted fast, running out and striking the creature with her bare hands and forcing it to free her son.
“The true hero of this story is his mom because she absolutely saved her son’s life,” California Department of Fish and Wildlife spokesman Captain Patrick Foy told Associated Press on Saturday.
“She ran out of the house and started punching and striking the mountain lion with her bare hands and got him off her son,” Foy added.
The boy sustained significant injuries to his head, neck and upper torso, but is now in stable condition at a hospital in Los Angeles, according to authorities.
The mountain lion was later located and killed by an officer with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who found the big cat crouching in the bushes with its “ears back and hissing” at the officer shortly after he arrived at the property.
“Due to its behavior and proximity to the attack, the warden believed it was likely the attacking lion and to protect public safety shot and killed it on sight,” the wildlife department noted in its statement.
The mountain lion attack is the first such attack on a human in Los Angeles County since 1995, according to Fish and Wildlife.
The Santa Monica Mountains is a biodiverse region teeming with wildlife such as large raptors, mountain lions, bears, coyote, deer, lizards, and snakes. However, their numbers have rapidly faded in recent years, causing local wildlife authorities to find new ways to manage the region’s endemic species.
Video Shows Taliban Taking Joyride in Captured US Blackhawk Helicopter
The rapid fall of Kabul to the Taliban has resulted in a number of surreal sights – from footage of the Islamist group’s fighters exercising at a presidential gym to clips of combatants having a great time on bumper cars at the local fun park.
However, a new video of Taliban members seemingly testing their skills in the cockpit of a commandeered UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter shows the chilling extent to which U.S. wares have fallen into the hands of a group it spent trillions of dollars, and exhaustive resources, to stamp out.
In the new video, shared on Twitter, the front-line utility helicopter can be seen taxiing on the ground at Kandahar Airport in southeastern Afghanistan, moving along the tarmac. It is unclear who exactly was sitting in the cockpit, and the Black Hawk cannot be seen taking off or flying.
It is unlikely that the Taliban have any combatants who are sufficiently trained to fly a UH-60 Black Hawk.
The helicopter, which carries a $6 million price tag, is just a small part of the massive haul that fell into the militant group’s hands after the country’s central government seemingly evaporated on Aug. 14 amid the withdrawal of U.S. and coalition troops.
Some 200,000 firearms, 20,000 Humvees and hundreds of aircraft financed by Washington for the now-defunct Afghan Army are believed to be in the possession of the Taliban.
The firearms include M24 sniper rifles, M18 assault weapons, anti-tank missiles, automatic grenade launchers, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars.
Taliban fighters in the elite Badri 313 Brigade have been seen in propaganda images showing off in uniforms and wielding weaponry meant for the special forces units of the Afghan Army.
The U.S. is known to have purchased 42,000 light tactical vehicles, 9,000 medium tactical vehicles and over 22,000 Humvees between 2003 and 2016.
The White House remains unclear on how much weaponry has fallen into Taliban hands, with National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan admitting last week that the U.S. lacks a “clear picture of just how much missing $83 billion of military inventory” the group has.