Fresno, CA

Fresno in 2021-New People-Same Issues

Mark-John Clifford

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It's a new year in Fresno and all over the world. There are changes brewing, and many of them right here in our backyard.

We have a new Mayor who was the former police chief, and we have a new police chief from outside the area.

Does any of this matter? We won't know for some time as they take on their positions and make changes, hopefully for good.

Isn't that the way things usually work? New people come in and make changes, and we wait to see.

In the past five days, there have been six homicides. That doesn't make our city look good.

Not that we haven't had other years where there have been a severe string of homicides. It happens, as most people have said when asked.

Other Cities

When I lived in New York and Boston, where I lived most of my life, it was the same in both cities, more so in New York.

New York, back in the day, had the Guardian Angels who were going to help the police take a bite out of crime. That lasted a little while, but in the end, the gangs and the mob won.

I had a friend who was a priest outside of New York who had an idea. He came to me one day looking for a donation to get his idea off the ground.

His idea was to work with the gangs that he had connected with and felt he could convince to crack down on crime. He believed he had their ear.

He did to a point. He explained how they could help their neighborhoods get rid of the mob and other criminals who were corrupting their communities and making those neighborhoods safer.

This sounded great, and it especially sounded great to the gangs who learned that if they got rid of the other criminals, they could do the same.

In the end, the parishioners of my friend's church turned against him and had him kicked out of his church.

The question then is how do we as Fresnians help the police, the local politicians, the national politicians, and everyone else involved make a difference and change things for the better?

Is it our responsibility to make better things happen? I think it is, but how do we do it?

As with any city in the United States, they rely on the authorities, whether the police or politicians, to make things happen. That begs the question, can they make things better, how long will it take, and can we wait that long?

We also have to wonder if there will be retribution for what these officials are trying to do? You know there will be some kind of revenge. It just goes with the territory.

Back in Fresno

I read today where the new police chief says we have to control Fresno's gun situation but to do that, he needs more money.

Money always seems to be the root of issues within the city, which costs residents money.

In the end, residents want safety, but we also must pay for that safety. This isn't any different than any other city that I've lived in.

Again the question is how much and how long will it take?

Everyone can come out and promise a miracle, but can they deliver in a timely fashion?

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We want to go out and feel safe either walking, jogging, riding our bikes with kids, or just driving around.

When we as a family think of going out, we wonder the best route to take for our safety and our grandkids' safety.

A week ago, our daughter and grandkids were going to a local bank near their home and witnessed a robbery on the street in front of the bank. This is a bank they go to often and had never had an issue. Now our daughter and our grandkids are afraid of that area.

What does that say about our society as we know it?

Is it something we should live with and tolerate or do something about? If we want to do something, what can we do?

I don't know about you, but we've made phone calls when there are gunshots in our area, as the police have advised us. They either don't show at all or too late to do anything about it.

A month ago, a model home across the street from us was shot up during the evening. The police came the next day to ask whether we heard shots, and we told them we did and called.

Now there's a security vehicle parked in front of the model homes with no one in it. How will that help? Don't you think people can see there's no one in it?

I don't have the answers. I've seen this, as I said, in almost every city I've lived in over the years, and it's just something we accept even though we don't like it.

For now and the seeable future in Fresno, we will rely on the new officials to make a difference and hope they can accomplish that while in office.

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Patti, my wife, and I write about life here in Fresno, California, and the Central Valley. We especially enjoy writing reviews about restaurants we've dined at, along with the food that is served. From time to time, we also write about and share recipes that we are fond of and hope you'll try them and let us know your thoughts. We are not traditional food critics. We don't have to worry about restaurants making unique dishes for us. We're just the average customer going in to dine, and then we write reviews.

Fresno, CA
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