- “There’s no more important ingredient for success, nothing would be more important for us reducing violence, than strong, stable families..." President Barak Obama Tweet This
- The best way to prevent crime is to ensure more children are raised in supportive families. Tweet This
- Leaders should cast a vision to a future where every child knows the joys of a strong, supportive family life with an involved father. Tweet This
In 2013, President Obama charged our nation with a solemn mission in response to the tragic murder of Hadiya Pendleton. Hadiya, a middle-school girl, was shot in the back by an 18-year-old-boy as she was standing in a Chicago park with friends. He mistook her friend group for a rival gang.
As he took the stage to respond to this tragedy, the President lamented that “no law or set of laws can prevent every senseless act of violence in this country…when a child opens fire on another child, there’s a hole in that heart that government can’t fill — only the community and parents and teachers and clergy can fill that hole.”
Rather than turning solely towards conventional political solutions to the challenge of crime, President Obama also highlighted a much more proximate solution: “There’s no more important ingredient for success, nothing would be more important for us reducing violence, than strong, stable families — which means we should do more to promote marriage and encourage fatherhood.”
Even as violence reaches the doorsteps of more families, many commentators and decision-makers seem to have forgotten the old bipartisan truth that the best way to prevent crime is to ensure more children are raised in supportive families.
Over the past two years, a new wave of violent crime has swept across America’s cities—victimizing countless more Hadiya Pendletons and inflicting the greatest pain on the most vulnerable. According to CDC data, the homicide rate increased by more than 50 percent between the beginning of 2020 and mid-2021. In Atlanta, the incidence of rape was up by a gut-wrenching 236 percent in 2021. In San Francisco, burglaries have skyrocketed to more than 45 percent their levels just two years ago.
Pittsburgh has been faced with a wave of particularly heinous murders. In January, 15-year-old Marquis Campbell was shot and killed outside his school, Oliver Citywide Academy. In April, two 17-year-olds, Mathew Steffy-Ross and Jaiden Brown, were shot and killed during a North Side Airbnb party. And in May, 18-month-old De’Avry Thomas was shot and killed in a Downtown drive-by.
Continue reading at the Pittsburg-Post Gazette . . .