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Vince Vitrano: Not For Broadcast



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Every now and then we have what I call a "What the heck is going on out there" weekend, and I believe this past one fits just right into that category.

They're the weekends where you wake up Monday morning, hear the news, and wonder... well... exactly what the phrase indicates... what the heck is going on out there?

In the City of Milwaukee over the weekend we had...

A 7 year old child hit by gunfire. She was shot in the leg when some loser with a score to settle shot up a car full of kids.

A 73 year old woman recovering from a stray gunfire wound. The long time central city neighbor was hit by a bullet that flew into her own home after shots were fired on the street.

A Miller Brewing Company executive murdered during a robbery in Walker's Point.

A guy out directing traffic around a car crash shot in the behind by who knows who for who knows what reason.

And that was just this weekend.

These are the kind of crimes that scare people. It used to be, and I don't think that long ago, that even in bad neighborhoods a guy minding his own business was pretty much okay. I never had a great deal of uneasiness going anywhere in this town.

What's changed is you've got innocent people targeted at random or caught in the crossfire. Criminals are completely amoral, operating without conscience or reservation.

It used to be, and not that long ago, that at least there was honor among thieves. Women were off limits. Older folks were off limits. For sure, children were off limits. The trouble that I've seen get worse in my 8 years here at TMJ, is that code is all gone now. It's not like it used to be where many criminals knew what they were doing was wrong, but didn't care. It seems many of these young perpetrators today are absent any semblance of a moral compass. It's not they commit bad actions and disregard empathy for the common man. They just don't feel any.

I've got no point beyond that, if only to point out that we again had a "What the heck is going on out there" weekend in Milwaukee. Look for there to be community meetings. There will be calls with angry community activists for, "the violence must stop." There will be renewed commitments by police. New initiatives discussed. What there won't be is a decline in this sort of activity. Sorry. We never see it.

This is a problem beyond the scope of the Mayor, the Chief of Police, aldermen and the like. They can't legislate morality.






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