Sensationalistic Cover!

RECEIVED Sun., June 28, 2009

Dear Editor,
    Regarding your cover story "Crime and the City Solution" [Music, June 26]: Could your cover be more sensationalistic? Blood splatter on a chalk-mark outline of a guitar? Because of violence in an area with dozens of bars, the host of hundreds of thousands of visitors and locals yearly? Do you know the violent crime rates in New Orleans' French Quarter? Memphis' Beale Street? Those are tourist destinations with a lot more trouble than we have.
    Savlov's "interview" with Police Chief Art Acevedo was a candy-covered soft pitch that smelled of Glade Lilac Spring. I thought I had my face shoved into Grandma's armpit while reading it. Downtown violent crime is down 14% this year, Acevedo says, and "Our Downtown is one of the safest downtowns in the country."
    So much for your blood-splattered chalk outline and reactionary texts of “frequently bloody” and “potentially deadly.” Driving I-35 is deadlier than having a beer on Sixth at midnight. Where’s your scary cover art for that?
    Still, the “reporting” gets better. Savlov lets Acevedo whine that he needs 50 more police officers who will dress like cops and scatter the dealers and thugs before they walk or ride around the corner. Yeah … that's working so well now.
    I work less than a block away from McCreight’s business and often see a dozen cops all hanging out on that corner where crack and crime is dispensed. When the cops leave, the thugs come back. Why doesn't Acevedo simply put some of the cops he already has in street clothes so they aren't so neon-bright obvious to the criminals? Then they'll get some bad guys. Walking more cops around in cop uniforms is like turning on the light in a room filled with roaches.
    Austin doesn't need more cops. The cops we have need to be utilized properly.
Trent Reker
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