By: Tony Messenger
See original article here.
When the late summer St. Louis homicide surge comes — and it almost always does — nobody talks about hungry children.
In recent days, those two stories — hunger and homicide — have filled the airwaves and headlines as unrelated news items.
After a couple of violent weekends, the annual homicide count, a crude but often-used data point for judging a mayor’s performance, rose above last year’s pace of homicides. That’s generally bad political news for Mayor Tishaura Jones. Homicides in St. Louis fell in her first year in office. If, in a few months, the yearly numbers go up again, pressure will build for new solutions.
We know what the old solutions are: more cops, and higher pay for more cops. Even though St. Louis has long had more police officers per capita than similar-sized and even many larger cities, the tough-on-crime crowd will keep pushing for that. There’s no data — not here, not anywhere — that suggests more cops on the streets will significantly reduce homicides.