Communities are organic and ecological, responding to outside stimulus and internal forces that change over time – sometimes very quickly. Even large communities – comprised of ethnic, racial, political, cultural groups – are in an evolutionary state. They are in a Darwinian state as they adjust either forwards toward further harmony, cohesion, safety and financial well-being, or going backwards or devolving.
This becomes a neighborhood by neighborhood phenomena – the evolution of a community. And this does, of course, include how neighborhoods deal with crime in their businesses and homes. And this relates directly to how well police are performing in their community policing duties.
Oakland, CA, has seen a spiking of crime recently, and its very worrisome for residents in certain neighborhoods. Robberies are up 54%, burglaries up 40% and car theft up 33%. Those are big climbs. As a Darwinian response to this Oakland neighborhoods are banding together financially and purposely to hire security guards as an augmenting of the city police force.
Hiring security guards to help guard Oakland neighborhoods is not just for the more well off. Residents of middle class area Maxwell Park chip in .50 a day for a security guard to patrol their homes four hours a day.
Some of the security officers being hired are armed. Some are not. And they don’t take the place of police. But the are a powerful deterrent, and the word goes out that certain neighborhoods now have professional security protection.