In America criminals have more rights than law-abiding taxpayers.
Last week, the Supreme Court ruled against using drug-sniffing dogs at traffic stops without probable cause. This is a supreme stupidity. In other words, the tool most likely to give law enforcement probable cause to search for illegal drugs can no longer be used without probable cause.
How much probable cause does the Supreme Court need before they allow the American people to defend our cities and our innocent children against the menace of drugs and thugs?
Doesn't the city of Warren have enough probable cause when drug gangs from Detroit shoot up local bars with assault rifles? Or are death threats against our police sufficient probable cause?
What should be required to unleash the dogs? How about a metastasizing epidemic of opiate drug overdoses across the Warren area?
Under such circumstances our local, state and federal leaders must take decisive action against an epidemic of thugs terrorizing our city.
Sadly, what we get from our leaders is lip service about how they're doing everything in their power to keep us safe. What we need now are can-do leaders who aren't afraid to do what must be done to get the thugs off our streets.
America's response to 911 was an example of taking decisive action to defend innocent people from terrorists. Maybe it's high time to send in the National Guard here in Warren.
After all, since 911, the hard-working people of Warren have given more than $94 million in federal taxes for "defense" against al Qaida overseas, specifically for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. (www.nationalprior-ities.com). Regrettably, that is a whole lot of local money that could be defending us here at home, especially considering these facts:
A) The Warren area has never experienced any inkling of an al Qaida threat;
B) For over a decade now, gangs of assault rifle-wielding thugs have been tearing Warren apart one neighborhood / one domestic terror act at a time.
And just imagine how well we could fight the proliferation of heroin, crack and meth across the Buckeye State if we had a mere 1 percent of the $43 billion Ohioans have sent to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Thugs kill about 5 to 10 Warren citizens annually. These domestic terrorists' victimize Warren's citizens, not only by loss of priceless lives, but by creating an environment of general lawlessness around our once great city and subsequently destroying our property values.
The value of a decent home in Warren has been more than halved in recent years and there is no better explanation than drugs-n-thugs. If one could simply blame the weak national economy, then decent homes in neighboring Howland would have also been halved, but they have not.
So with all due respect, Congressman Ryan, Gov. Kasich and Mayor Franklin, the defenseless citizens of Warren need a lot more than a "united front to push back" against thugs who have all but destroyed our once great city.
By now it may even be hard for people to believe that Warren was once (1950s) highly ranked among the best cities in America to raise a family!
When I first moved my family to Warren 10 years ago, I was unaware of three drug houses and a brothel on my street. It was shocking!
With considerable cooperation and effort between law enforcement at multiple levels, the Historic Perkins Neighborhood Association, and yours truly- we cleaned up my street. But Warren's domestic terror problem has only worsened as Detroit drug gangs moved in to fight over turf.
I used to attend meetings with local, state and federal officials. At one such meeting I jabbed "Why can't you just arrest these drug dealers that everyone can see standing around on the same street corners night after night?" Their "can't do" answers always infuriated me.
Aspiring politicians explained away how the guy on the corner was just a front man, or a runner with no drugs on him. The runners bring prospective clients to various drug houses.
Still, I could not contain my frustration, "C'mon! Really? Every neighbor in the city knows which houses are the drug houses! Go undercover or take drug-sniffing dogs and bust 'em!"
No matter who I talked to, the "answers" became predictable. "Can't do because ..." - dealers would recognize undercover local police and it didn't matter anyhow because constitutional law requires jails to release suspected dealers after (posting bond) 24 hours without hard physical evidence and the tests to confirm suspected substances (example: an ounce of white powder) are sent away and take two days... blah-blah.
Again, I erupted, "That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard in my life! The city of Warren needs a 24/7 drug testing lab."
The old faithful excuse was "Can't do it - not enough money."
I informed them the cost of a chromatography / spectroscopy lab would be minimal in comparison with the impending downward spiral of an entire city!
In the end, mostly to maintain my sanity, I quit going to "can't do" meetings.
And I don't blame our local police forces for one second; rather they have my full support. After all, our leaders have barely equipped them for peacetime operations in the middle of a full scale domestic terror assault!
Clearly, our federal, state, and local leaders don't take our security seriously. We the People of Warren and Ohio, in general, demand more decisive action now!
Herman is a Warren resident. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org