The new rankings of the “most dangerous cities” in the United States are out, and they are already being criticized for the way crime statistics are being used. The FBI compiles the statistics, yet distances itself from the CQ Press, which puts out the “most dangerous” list. Critics say the rankings are there for shock value and paint an inaccurate image of a city. The chief of police in Detroit said the rankings give the impression that a visitor to Detroit will be killed, but the truth is, most of the killings are drug related and not random. Murderers are not roaming the streets of downtown Detroit looking for innocent tourists to just shoot. Kara (a native of Metro Detroit) and I have visited Detroit several times, and plan to visit there again with our daughter. We even stay in a hotel right downtown and walk on the sidewalks!
According to the study, Detroit is the most dangerous city in America, followed by last year’s winner of this dubious crown, St. Louis. Hartford ranked 31, down from 34 last year, but a big improvement over the No. 7 ranking a few years ago. The motives behind murders in Hartford are often similar to the ones in Detroit. Again, gun-toting thugs are not cruising the streets of Hartford to take out random people.
The Connecticut naysayers will say, “I’m not going to Hartford, it is dangerous.” With that logic, there are plenty of other places they need to take off their list of possible vacation sites, places more “dangerous” than our Capital City.
Yes, according to the study, the home of Mickey Mouse is more dangerous than Hartford. It was ranked the 11th most dangerous city! Those who don’t want to visit Hartford should tell their children the home of Disney World is too dangerous. There is a Disney store in one of the malls that should be safer, but don’t drive over Avon Mountain to get there. Statistically, it is more dangerous than any street you’ll find in Hartford.
Tell your children they can’t go there, either, because it, too, is more dangerous than Hartford. There is a replica of the Iwo Jima Memorial in New Britain that will be much safer. Just tell them to squint at the State Capitol as you drive by, and it might look like the U.S. Capitol.
Also avoid Baltimore, Miami, Tampa, Houston, Atlanta and Birmingham, Ala. They are all more dangerous than a trip to the Hartford Civic Center.
There is more crime in Hartford than in Glastonbury. It is a city. There is more crime in New York than its suburbs, but does that make these cities inherently dangerous? No.
I’ve lived in Hartford for 15 years and have never been the victim of violent crime. My car window was smashed years ago, but my car was also broken into at the Westfarms Mall. Crime can happen anywhere — and it does. There are carjackings in the suburbs, robberies in the suburbs and even murders in nice towns. We report on them every day. On Tuesday, Nov. 20 newscasts, we had crimes from such dangerous places as Old Lyme, Manchester, Plainfield, Putnam, Norwich and East Hartford.
No matter where you go, you need to be careful.