TODAY'S QUESTION: What can Columbia do to reduce violent crime?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 | 11:12 a.m. CDT; updated 12:38 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, May 26, 2010

COLUMBIA — Increases in the rate of violent crime in Columbia are a persistent, though not steady, problem. After increasing by 34 percent in 2007, the rate decreased by 36 percent in 2008. Now the numbers have risen again.

In just over a week, the Missourian has reported on recent incidents of a variety of violent crimes including rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault.

These stories may be representative of an unfortunate increase — nearly 30 percent — in the number of violent crimes in Columbia between 2008 and 2009. The increases were primarily in incidents of forcible rape and aggravated assault. These statistics are tracked annually by the FBI. 

In a previous Missourian article, Public Information Officer Jessie Haden said that these are often crimes of passion — difficult to see coming — and that the department sometimes has more luck solving them than preventing them.

But law enforcement officials aren't the only ones capable of affecting violent crime. In 2007, the last year of increase, a group of local activists met to discuss education and violence in Columbia. The group discussed what roles both the police and the community can take to curb Columbia's crime rate, according to previous Missourian coverage of their meeting.

What can Columbia do as a community to reduce its rate of violent crime?

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Ray Shapiro May 27, 2010 | 12:21 a.m.

Here's one thing to consider:
("Prison Study to Investigate Link between Junk Food And Violence")

(Report Comment)
Carl Kabler May 27, 2010 | 7:35 a.m.

Again Ray, I find myself (for the second time?) agreeing with what you are saying, though many might not see the link at first between behavior and what goes into the body and mind, people must realize the brain is an organ, much like the heart, or lungs, or the eyes, it can 'malfunction' just like these other organs if it doesn't receive what it needs to keep the bodies systems 'balanced'. It can be overstimulated or understimulated by a huge array of external factors producing a whole range of feelings and reactions including eventually such things as extreme anger and violence and mood swings.

I recall as a child, just like most American kids, being fed mountains of sugar laced foods (and simple carbs) that made me literally bounce off the walls, and like so many others aquiring as a result a so called 'disease' (but temporary and *curable*) such a 'ADD' or 'hyperactivity'. I cringe when I read there are over 4 MILLION? U.S. kids on Ritalin (or similar drugs) to combat the very fire parents are unknowingly or naively stoking by their helping to pump this 'sugar drug' into their children. The brain and accompanying systems run on glucose, it's like pouring gas on a fire and wondering why the fire doesn't go out. And then we find those who make their profits from sales saying 'it has no affect'. Wow! Liars!

IMO refined carbs are really one of the first 'gateway drugs', they strip and deplete one's body of necessary nutrient stores of B-vitamins and minerals etc. that are desperately needed and already in short supply that control 'mood' and other brain system functions. Ever witness someone with 'low blood sugar' blow up over 'nothing' when they are on a low (caused by the overabuse of refined carbs), often you don't want to be around.

Many children turn to alcohol when they get older to try and feel 'normal' after years of other simple carb abuse,in a bandaide effort to self medicate. It IMO wasn't really their 'fault' how could they have known (or their parents) what was happening, it's a trap set and one hard to get out of (but possible through slow re-balancing steps.) Some go on to even harder drugs and never get out and/or end up in prison or a mental health ward. This has always been ONE of my main reasons to be against the so called 'war on drugs' it's really attacking (in SOME cases) *sick* people, it's like attacking someone with cancer or heart disease, cruel and IMO non-effective in the bigger picture.

(Report Comment)

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