Wednesday, May 07, 2008


Broken Windows ...

During the Giuliani administration we were introduced locally to the practical application of the "broken windows theory " of James Q. Wilson by Jack Maple ,William Bratton and others at NYPD . Wilson with George Kelling had co-authored an influential article in the Atlantic Monthly in 1982 that presented the basic components of the theory to the general public somewhat earlier . The theory claimed that proactive crime prevention included , among other things , cleaning -up neighborhoods physically ; doing things like replacing broken windows helped reduce crime by demonstrating that someone cared about the continuing healthy stability of the neighborhood . NYPD and the Giuliani administration made the theory one of the foundation stones of their crime prevention program . A program which in the end did reduce crime in the toughest nieghborhoods of this city such as the East Village out on the alphabet streets .
On March 31 we posted a story about gun-shots being fired at 290 east 4th street . We posted a picture of the front of the building including bullet-holes in 2 panes of the double-thick bullet resistant glass of the entrance to the building . It is now more than a month later and as can be seen above the broken windows , broken by bullets , still remain in place . Why ?
How does a parent explain and endure this lingering , coruscating and heinous trace of past gun-play at the entrance to their building when walking with their child or children into the building .
For more on Wilson's and Kelling's take on communities , crime and policing see:

your photos & words are a great resource. thank you for posting so regularly. sincerely, adam c. @ e.4th & d
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