Tuesday, July 15, 2014


There was a Metro bus crash yesterday because a passenger attacked the driver. 



If I had to guess which bus line I'd say the #41.  And as the union comments, this type of thing is far too common on buses. 

Bus driver's take all the anger for everything that is wrong with Metro, and the heat for a lot of what is wrong in the city.

These spikes in violence and crime seem to be so bewildering to our "leaders".  It's as if they live in a completely different city, in fact, a different WORLD, than the rest of us.

Look at the crime maps of St. Louis, and it is obvious that these spikes are happening in the poorest and most downtrodden parts of the city.

The financial crisis of 2008, which we supposedly are "recovering" from, is not over.  In fact, it hasn't even begun.  The bank bailouts did NOTHING to fix the economy.  The bailouts simply shifted the problem.

And all of this screaming you hear about our roads and infrastructure, the insolvency of our state and government bodies, where do you think this money crunch is being felt the most?

At the bottom. 

Yes, you can keep taking a few dollars a week from SNAP recipients, make unemployment benefits harder to obtain, raise sales taxes, ignore our failing school systems, and keep adding more police to already overly-policed neighborhoods (more cops make bad neighborhoods worse), and all of us will pay the price.

This city treats North St. Louis like a concentration camp.  Half of this city doesn't exist, except for the crime reports (and the poor of this city making our legal system and lawyers and private prison owners wealthier).

And the more desperate the people become, the harder the state cracks down, the more explosive it is going to get.  The less they will be able to "contain" the spikes to the areas where no "decent" person will go.

I wish that not only were Metro officials required to ride the buses, I wish all the local politicians were required to actually walk the streets and ride transit and talk to people. 

And police should be required to "walk the beat" and get to know the people in the communities they police.

And, yes, Metro needs more security.  And they need to pay their drivers more.  Bus drivers take a lot of crap, and while some of them are jerks-- or jerks sometimes, they are people, after all, like the rest of us-- they deserve to be treated with more respect, not just from riders, but from the company that employs them.

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