Sunday, June 24, 2007

Chalk one up for the positive side

Davenport, Rock Island share national honor -QCTimes

Here's Bill Wundram's take on it.

People around the country are starting to catch on to what we have here.
Now if only people around the Quad Cities would do the same.

Every time friends of mine come into town, or I show first-time visitors around they seem impressed. I guess a lot of the locals have forgotten just how bad things were in the late 80's when they complain about how things are going now.

28 Comments:

At 6/24/2007 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now we just need to get our out of control crime down. Then we would realy have a selling point. Not to mention the homeless problem along the river.

 
At 6/24/2007 6:41 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

I agree. Although the homeless wouldn't necessarily scare away people from bigger cities who are used to seeing them, I bet its a bigger deal to small town folks. Hopefully lots of people are signing up for the VIPs program so the city can start having them patrol the riverfront, and Centennial Park.

 
At 6/25/2007 8:44 AM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

LOL - VIPS patrols are ok but not Guardian Angels. Ok. Or have you changed your stand on the GA too?

 
At 6/25/2007 8:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

VIPS do not patrol. This is another ineffective feel good deal. Let's get down and dirty please and get rid of the slum tenants and the bad property owners. Take away the place to live for the criminals and get rid of the crime. CLOSE EMEIS< CASTLEWOOD< ETC> Close them and the leaches will crawl to the next sucker town that gives freebies like Davenport does.

 
At 6/25/2007 9:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Homelessness is a problem in any metro area. Some cities hide it better than others. It's obvious in Denver, D.C., Vegas, Reno, and Tampa. Less so in Chicago where the City has moved the homeless from visible areas like Lower Wacker. Crime is an issue, but it is very isolated in terms of geography and constituency. Nonetheless, it should be addressed for the sake of the immediate neighborhoods. The Quad Cities is a scenic and affordable area. Despite calls for a new bridge across the Mississippi, the truth is getting around the QCs is a breeze. As for jobs, locals need to get over the idea that there should still be great paying jobs for people who are unwilling to get an education or training beyond high school. Quad City companies are desparate for engineers, trained I.T., and health care workers. Even without advanced training, bright people can still work their way up if they're willing to show up for work on time EVERY day, willing to learn and put in a good day's work. I constantly hear employers say they can't find dedicated workers.

 
At 6/25/2007 9:35 AM, Blogger pioneer98 said...

VIPs are not Guardian Angels, but homeless people are usually not dangerous criminals.

 
At 6/25/2007 11:09 AM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

I've always been for the VIPS program. Go back to my very first mention of the Guardian Angels and I say that. The reason I couldn't support the GAs was their physical interventions, which the VIPS don't do.

And to whoever said they don't patrol, I don't know where you're getting that. They already patrol the skybridge, and they patrol neighborhoods in city vehicles with city police radios.

 
At 6/25/2007 12:31 PM, Blogger Matt said...

I'm not sure I agree that homelessness is less of a problem, or is hidden well, in Chicago. i don't know about lower wacker, but walk around anywhere else inside the loop and homeless folks are ubiquitous. under the library stop is a major gathering place - public urination abounds there. Ogilve station has a lot of folks around there too.

 
At 6/25/2007 12:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

From the first announcement of the Rock Island/Davenport river front plan, I thought...how exciting can this really all come together?

With each bit of postive reinforcement, the chances are improved. The honor awarded the cities will help to lend creditability for grant requests.

Congratulations to all involved.

 
At 6/25/2007 1:39 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

Yeah QCI, I know you love the VIPS but dislike the GA. The VIPS get applauded for driving around in cars that no one knows about that are therefor completely innefective in preventing crime but perhaps if they are lucky enough to be driving through the right place at the right time can call in a report about a crime. Just like any citizen. Why don't we just have a campaign to encourage people to call in things they see? It would be less expensive than tracking volunteers and paying for gas at $3/gallon.

My problem with saying VIPS is ok and GA is not is that you are making a moral judgement on who deserves help and who doesn't. You have said if a woman were getting beat by someone in a dark alley you would intervene. But you wouldn't if it were some drunk guy. Why? Some drunk guy can still be injured or killed. What if the woman is drunk? Do you intervene then? It also reeks of sexism that the poor little woman needs to be protected but a man should be able to take care of himself. ICK!

 
At 6/25/2007 1:58 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

Its more about 2 willing combatants vs 1 person attacking another. Getting in between 2 people who want to fight is a recipe for a 3 person fight.

 
At 6/25/2007 2:22 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

I also don't know why you would say they don't prevent crime because no one knows they're around. They wear red shirts instead of red berets, and drive Crown Vics that I believe say City of Davenport on them. I thought I had heard they were trying to get a car that said Volunteers in Policing or something, but I could be wrong on that. They have everything that's good about the GAs, without the bad. Since they have police radios they can call directly for help, and I'm sure officers would respond quickly. They're one of the only policies Bladel has implemented that I agree with.

 
At 6/25/2007 3:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

lets get back on track with positive reinforcement. Like the ad campaign a couple years ago said. We have momentum lets not squander it like a certain president did with his 'political capital'

 
At 6/25/2007 3:52 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

Ha! Nothing can get us back on track like a comment like that. Seriously though, this really is another feather in Davenport's cap, and like someone else said, leverage when it comes to getting grants and such.

 
At 6/25/2007 4:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess we can put to rest the QCRPA propaganda about how the best cities to live in don't have rental inspections.

 
At 6/25/2007 4:16 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

So let me get your argument pinned down QCI. The only reason you dislike the Guardian Angels is because you believe two people who want to fight should be able to do it without intervention. Is that correct?

 
At 6/25/2007 4:47 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

The reason I don't like them, is because they get involved in physical altercations. That presents a lot of problems, and I think they would do 95% as much good in the community just calling the police when they see a problem. Why add all the issues that come into play with physical interventions for that 5%? I know you disagree, but this is what my educational background is in.

 
At 6/25/2007 5:08 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

Couple of things. As to your 2 yr degree in criminal justice, yep, got me beat there. All I do is educate myself by having intelligent conversations with people who are out there doing the work. I guess that makes my opinion less valuable but I'll give it anyway.

Your problem isn't with the physical intervention if you have already stated that you would also intervene in some situations. Your problem is that you believe *your* judgement on what situations it applies to is better than their judgement. Since you don't know any of them and haven't taken the time to actually go follow a patrol or actually see what they are about before criticizing I don't know what you are basing your lack of faith in their judgement on. They have been training since what, March? That's a heck of a lot of training cruiser's been talking about. He's been out there just about every weekend from the sounds of it. Not just reading a book, out there doing something positive for our whole city. Thanks GA! You are appreciated.

 
At 6/25/2007 5:12 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

As to the VIPS. I had no idea those cars were a law enforcement tool. I have seen the elderly men driving slowly through neighborhoods. I thought they were code enforcement or something. If I were a criminal I wouldn't stop doing something because I saw one of those cars. And the red shirts are hard to see if they are sitting in a car.

I'd rather give those cars a paint job to make them into police cars and get a couple people out from behind desks at the precinct.

 
At 6/25/2007 6:03 PM, Blogger cruiser said...

I was just wondering QCI, besides the one informational meeting Curtis Sliwa had; do you know anything about the Guardian Angels?
snarky mentioned me, so I thought I'd chime in. Alot of other people are out there alot more hours than I am. Chief Bladel is the only member of our Police force who's against us to my knowledge. If you see a group who want to empower kids with an unbreakable sense of self-worth and be role models as wrong, then we come from different places. The intervention is but a small part of what we do.

 
At 6/25/2007 6:20 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

First of all snarky, don't presume to know what kind of degree I have. I have a Bachelor's from WIU in Macomb in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration.

When I state that I'd physically intervene in some extreme cases, that's not the same as going out on patrol looking for things to physically intervene in.

And yes Cruiser, I've done my research on the GAs, and knew about them before they came here.

I think we should just let this one drop. You guys are never going to convince me that the 5% of additional effectiveness is worth the trouble, and I'm never going to convince you that the VIPS have a better system. We'll just have to agree to disagree.

 
At 6/25/2007 6:36 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

Sorry about the assumption on your degree QCI. I believed I read previously you are a security guard and I typically associate that with an associate's. The people I have known with bachelor's in that field have typically gotten right in with law enforcement agencies, DEA/FBI and even local police.

We can agree to disagree but I still would like to understand why you oppose them so much? I had no opinion either way until they got here, I hoped for the best but didn't really know what they were about. The more I learn the more I'm convinced they are exactly what we need right now.

Sorry if I've offended you, I always question my own beliefs and whether they are rationally formed opinions or not, especially when I am putting them out for others to read.

 
At 6/25/2007 6:43 PM, Blogger pioneer98 said...

This is typical...We win a national award for the River Vision project and we end up discussing crime. I'm not saying it shouldn't be discussed, but there are other threads for this. Let's enjoy the award.

 
At 6/25/2007 6:55 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

For one, don't believe everything you read commenters say about me.

I'm not as against them as you may think, its more that I prefer the VIPs. I was excited to see so many people excited about improving our neighborhoods, and I think that kind of directed-enthusiasm is needed in Davenport.

There are so many things that can be done to assist the police, and free up their time for things that can only be done by them.

For example, whenever a (probably stolen) bicycle randomly shows up in someone's yard, the police have always sent an officer out to pick it up. Then its taken back to the PD and stored until either its owner is found, or it can be sold. One of the VIPs tasks has been to take over these duties. So by sending the red-shirted retired people out to pick up a bike, it does the equivalent of putting an extra officer on the street for half an hour. By having VIPs patrolling parks, the skybridge, or the downtown, crimes can be prevented by the fact that someone is around, which also frees up officers.

Think how much officer time could be saved by having 30 or 40 VIPs instead of the 12 or 15 that I believe they have now. I just feel its the better way to volunteer to fight crime.

 
At 6/25/2007 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I have a Bachelor's from WIU in Macomb in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration".

Is that all it takes to get a Per Mar type job, cool.

Keep the VIPS behind desks and save some gas before one of them gets hurt. Oh by the way, the GA's are doing a great job, keep up the good work guys.

 
At 6/25/2007 7:07 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

See, I agree with you on the VIPS in that avenue QCI, freeing up some of the administrative/mundane tasks. I just don't think *they* belong out patrolling. LOL. I have heard from multiple people (not just commenters ;) ) that VIPS are - old. It is dangerous for them to be patrolling. Look at this pic of them. I'm sure they have some more younger members but for the most part it attracts the same volunteers as the front desk at the hospital.

I believe VIPS has their place in assisting police and the Guardian Angels have their own.

The award for the cities is a great achievement! We just keep getting reinforcement that we are the place to be! Livability and affordability all in one!

 
At 6/25/2007 8:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What the hell has the GA's done that is so great? I doubt if a bunch of 50+ people walking our streets is going to do much to solve the crime problem.

 
At 6/25/2007 10:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:47 PM, Pull your head out of your A$$, you don't know what you are talking about!

 

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