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Old 01-30-2012, 02:57 PM
 
12,489 posts, read 7,590,730 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suydam View Post
I find that it helps to see actual stats before really making judgements.

Two people or three that happen to live in a really great/horrible neighborhood always assume the entire city is great/horrible and that becomes their message on these boards.

For that reason, the crime stats right here on city-data.com can be very helpful:

Grand Rapids, MI
- Crime index is 445.4, significantly higher than the US average of 319
- Crime index was lower in 2010 than at any point in the last decade (i.e. things have improved substantially city-wide in terms of crime).
- Murders in GR are 4.7 per 100,000 people
- Auto thefts are 194.4 per 100,000 people

Detroit, MI
- Crime index is 887.7, nearly triple the national average and almost double grand rapids.
- Crime has fallen over 10 years so that the crime index is the best it's been in a decade here as well.
- Murders in Detroit are 34.5 per 100,000 people or about 7 times as bad as GR.
- Auto thefts are 1,400 per person or about 5 times worse than GR.

To compare G.R. to Detroit is not even remotely apples-to-apples.

That does not minimize certain experiences in certain places, but from a city-wide statistical perspective there is no comparison.

That is not to bash Detroit either. I love the city, visit often and strongly believe it's in all of our collective best interest to find solutions to the problems cities face.

But that does not take away from the fact that GR and Detroit have dramatically different crime rates, and thus dramatically different "safety rates" (if you flip those numbers around).
I do not get the constant need to juxtapose GR with Detroit. Detroit may have a lot of crime but given its reputation a person will be on their toes in Detroit and hence avoid a lot of problems. On the other hand, a person may tend to drop their guards because GR is such a "Safe" place.....and then become a crime victim as a result of feeling too inhibited. There are people just like many of you living in Detroit and they are not victims.

One cannot live their life based upon statistics. One has to use a degree of common sense.
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Old 01-30-2012, 06:35 PM
 
Location: East Grand Rapids, MI
845 posts, read 3,018,467 times
Reputation: 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Indentured Servant View Post
I do not get the constant need to juxtapose GR with Detroit. Detroit may have a lot of crime but given its reputation a person will be on their toes in Detroit and hence avoid a lot of problems. On the other hand, a person may tend to drop their guards because GR is such a "Safe" place.....and then become a crime victim as a result of feeling too inhibited. There are people just like many of you living in Detroit and they are not victims.

One cannot live their life based upon statistics. One has to use a degree of common sense.
Hey, I agree... but the question is (or was) the chief topic of this thread.

At any rate I agree with everything you said.

I am equally annoyed by people who are terrified to visit downtown GR because of their perception that it's terribly dangerous. I know people like this, so this is not a hypothetical. :-)
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:54 AM
 
12,489 posts, read 7,590,730 times
Reputation: 4755
Quote:
Originally Posted by suydam View Post
Hey, I agree... but the question is (or was) the chief topic of this thread.

At any rate I agree with everything you said.

I am equally annoyed by people who are terrified to visit downtown GR because of their perception that it's terribly dangerous. I know people like this, so this is not a hypothetical. :-)
I think that was another thread that you are thinking about.....but I think we agree for the most part. I think people should simply be cognizant of the fallacy of composition. What is true for the whole is not necessarily true of its parts and what's true of a part is not necessarily true for the whole. Hence, crime statistics for a city may be good or bad, overall, but there are many parts of cities that defy the overall statistic for those cities.

Perception can make or break cities by creating self-fulfilling prophecies. I think people understand that with Grand Rapids, which is why so many people get defensive when people talk about the bad side of GR. Detroit (I guess I am guilty of the Juxtapositioning now) was unfairly demonized for decades. All its once great neighborhoods were ignored as the only thing people focused on was the negative....so is scared investment away and without investment\reinvestment entropy is the result.
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