Archive for August 28th, 2009

The Crime Biz

I worked for a while in two prisons. As someone has pointed out, if you took all the things I mention here and made a biography out of it, I have lived a couple of hundred years.

One thing I really learned while in those prisons was that crime is a business. Not just organized crime, but crime in general. It is the way certain people make their living.

Besides, if you are in prison, what does everybody around KNOW about? At a medical convention people talk about medicine. In a prison, they talk about crime.

Like all my observations this one seems obvious, so you nod and go on worrying about what is in the paper or who is in People Magazine.

I was reading in an independent give-away yuppie newspaper about a guy who got beat up by a gang in Five Points. Five Points is Columbia’s yuppie and college student bar area.

So if you go back to People Magazine after reading my observation, you will miss why this yuppie area that recently was so safe is now dangerous.

One of the things prisoners discuss a LOT is guns. Contrary to the Heroic Criminal Myth, criminals are no more fond of facing a weapon than anyone else. No, it is NOT routine for a criminal to take the gun away from a cringing, drooling person and shoot him with it.

In fact, there are likely far more incidents of crime victims taking the fun away from the robber than vice-versa.

In the real world. But cases where someone who is not in a police costume stopping crime is not reported. And the judges are a lot more anxious to imprison someone for stopping crime than for committing it.

You see, the criminal knows who to call and what to say. This is experience average people do not have, so the cops love to trap them.

But back to the specific case of talking about crime. In any prison inmates about where citizens have guns in exactly the same way builders talk about potential accidents. Citizens out of costume are a major occupational hazard outside of states with what prisoners consider good, solid gun laws.

Back to Five Points. I mentioned before that a black guy marched into the recovery club with a gun and demanded money from everybody. Poor bastard was from New York.

Wrong state. One of those terrified unconsumed people in the club pulled out his gun and killed him on the spot.

It happens that that club is in Five Points. But it is RECOVERY club.

Five Points has become a gathering place for muggers because it is gun free. If a citizen has a gun permit, he cannot go into a place where alcohol is served. Five Points is full of bars and restaurants that serve alcohol, so it is the one place muggers and gangs are safe.

So if you just nod at my obvious observation, you will not understand why Five Points is a gathering place for criminals and why the guy got shot dead in that particular club.