This is regarding the question "Should Warren hire more police officers?" Where will the money come from to do this? From the money voted on when O'Brien was mayor? The people were asked to give the money and they voted and they did. Whatever happened then? And would that happen again? I am skeptical.
My growing-up years were in Warren. How I loved that city. I called it my city and I guess I was fortunate that upon the insistence of my soon-to-be wife, I agreed to settle in Niles. Upon getting married I unwillingly left my city. Even then, we could go to Warren and visit, shop and go to the parks with no fear.
During my growing-up years I could go to Quimby Park, Perkins Park and Packard Park anytime after dark with a girlfriend and walk the grounds, listen to the pops of the day and watch others enjoying the beauty and safety of these wonderful teen hangouts. We were free from the terrorism that is there in these same places now. I will not go into the city, or inner city after dark. Let alone go during some festival that lasts until dark. What can be done with this once all-American city? This once proud city with wonderful neighborhoods and even more wonderful schools?
The answer is more police, as simple as that. How is this possible? Money is the answer to get these new cops and train the 20 some that would bring the department up to strength. Please do not say grants. Grants are not the way to go. We were promised 100,000 new cops, during the Clinton administration, to be put on the streets in this whole country. It sounded good but with 50 states vying for the 100,000 who really got what? And how long did the new hires last? Warren has fallen to a depth that makes me glad I had a wife who was so stubborn that I did not stay in that city.
The mayor and safety service director must find where the past money went, be honest about the answer and be sincere without politics smothering the necessity for these newly needed police, and there is a possibility they may get to vote on a new levy for the required money. And it may pass.
I want to be able to go downtown again, visit the stores and the sites with no fear of a stray bullet hitting me or someone else. With a well-disciplined city the disciplined schools will follow, and Warren may become again, the city that I loved.
-- Patrick M. Liste, Girard