"I think there is a fear of change, a fear of change that is ungrounded in any rational apprehension about what will happen. We accept at some level that the whole prohibition policy is a total failure, yet in some other part of our brain we are afraid of change because we worry that society would just turn itself into a collection of drug-addled morons."
Whatever happened to shame? It got put out away in a basket, somewhere in a very deep drawer, covered with other obsolete items, like religion. Do you think that other gang members would want to end up in the pillories, too? Would they want to emulate someone who has been shamed in public, ridiculed, too?
In South Africa violence is present and disregarded across the country. The victims of this violence are black, coloured, Indian, and white, women and men, rich and poor, famous and unknown. While the stories of Oscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp deserve attention, there are other poignant personal histories across this spectrum of experience that are ignored, and have been ignored for decades. Surely such stories deserve real attention as well. Not a matter-of-fact reporting of time, place, and cause of death, but real attention; in narratives as penetrating and rich as is necessitated by the lives they represent.
The Eaton Centre shooting this past weekend is not the first time Toronto has been faced with such angst. Yet despite the latest violent outburst, our city remains a safe place. We're very lucky to live in Toronto; in comparison to many other urban centres in North America, crime and violence rarely touch us.
Depending on who you listen to, last weekend's shooting spree at Toronto's Eaton Centre was a sign of gun violence getting out of control, or an isolated "incident" in North America's safest large city. But the fact of the matter is there have been 134 shootings this year, and Toronto police still refuse to help the public by profiling the criminals.