While most in Lowell enjoy the lead up to Christmas, the city was smacked by two separate shootings in the past 48 hours. The first, at 49 Second Street in Centralville at about 8 pm on Wednesday (Dec 18) night, resulted in the murder of a man living in an apartment at that address. The second, at the BP gas station at the corner of Lincoln and Chelmsford Streets, happened yesterday (Thursday, Dec 19) at 3 pm. It resulted in the wounding of three men in a car at the gas station. That shooting site is just across the street from the Lincoln Elementary School which was in session at the time.
After scrutinizing the results of last month’s city council election, I wrote that the central issue in the race was not the performance of the city manager; it was public safety. Here’s part of what I wrote in a November 10, 2013 blog post:
The central issue in this election was not the city manager’s performance; it was public safety. In retrospect, the turning point was the public safety subcommittee meeting on October 8, 2013 when the message to the citizenry from the police and by extension the administration was that statistically there was more violence last year than there is this year. While that fact is probably correct and while the police and by extension the administration sincerely believe that any violence is too much violence, the “statistically things aren’t that bad” assertion has a certain “who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?” quality to it, especially to those living in the neighborhoods that are home to the many acts of violence that have occurred this year.
The new city council takes office in two weeks. With this uptick in violence, they will have all the motivation they need to translate their campaign prescriptions for curbing violence into specific policy proposals as quickly as possible.