Detroiters march to stop the violence - is it enough?
DETROIT (WJBK) - Some killers have reached a disgusting new low in Detroit as recently several children have been murdered in the city.
The youngest of those victims just 6 months old. At least two of the shootings happened in the same neighborhood.
Some Detroiters have reached their wits end with the violence – leading to Friday night’s march.
“There's nothing that we can't do when we come together in union and put our minds together. So we take back our streets,” yelled the rally leader. “We take back our neighborhoods today. We take back our streets today.”
A prayer rally on the city’s west side drew dozens of Detroiters, clergy and activists.
They took part in a peace march in the same neighborhood where 6-month-old Miracle Murray was killed during a shooting April 17.
Miracle’s death struck a nerve across the city. The shooting is believed to have been in retaliation to 3-year-old A’naiya Montgomery being gunned down just three weeks prior.
Last Saturday a 24-year-old man was gunned down in northwest Detroit while teaching his son how to ride a bike. His 4-month-old was also hit.
The message Friday night was enough is enough.
“It's murder, by one of us,” said Malik Shabazz, activist, New Black Panther Party. “Not a white man. Not 5-0, but one of us.”
“I've been in this neighborhood over 40 something years and I've never seen anything like this before,” said one man at the march.
“What I want to see is everybody come together, love one another,” said another woman.
But we’ve heard it all before.
And many are questioning the rituals of public outrage – the prayer rallies, the protests, the marches. Do they accomplish anything?
But silence, Detroit City Councilman James Tate argues, is far worse.
“The reality is, if we didn't have people saying anything right now then you would easily have the pundit who would say look this can happen in the city of Detroit and they don't even care,” Tate said. “There is a truth to the fact that marches and rallies alone won't solve this problem, but we can't discount the fact that you have people that are willing and able to raise the alarm of this issue. Because if you don't have someone doing that, then it's human nature: people forget. And they don't realize how much of a priority this is.”
The majority of Detroiters do. It is what prompted the activist group New Era Detroit to create the Street Code and it is what compelled Detroit Police Chief James Craig to come up with the taking back neighborhoods initiative. It is police officers working with church leaders, activists and neighborhood groups to come up with practical ideas to make Detroit a safer city and reduce crime.
A meeting is set for Tuesday night at Fellowship Chapel, 7707 W. Outer Drive.