The Public Eye

printed 07/06/2018

Here’s an amazing true fact, as opposed to an untrue fact, which, of course, wouldn’t be a fact at all: according to federal crime statistics, you are more likely to be murdered by your spouse than you are by a street gang.

Yet, no one is calling for a roundup of potentially murderous spouses, even though there are 120 million spouses (or spice, if you like) roaming the streets of our great nation unchecked.

This compares to the estimated 850,000 gang members in the country today.

This brings me to a particular concern: if I hear that MS-13 is stacking up at the border one more time, I’ll … I’ll … I don’t know what I’d do, except wonder why it continues to get top billing over more worthy criminal organizations that have been around much longer.

Yeah, yeah, I know. This is not a laughing matter, but I do worry that our more favored criminal elements are being denied equal time, now that “The Sons of Anarchy” and “The Sopranos” are off the air, not to mention the end of The Godfather trilogy 28 long years ago.

Admittedly, I’m just catching up on the gang conversation, having originally thought MS-13 was either a Microsoft update or something to be found in the hardware store near WD-40.

I had to look up MS-13 to see what and where it is, and discovered, via an illuminating report from the federal government’s National Gang Center, that it originated in the slums of Los Angles neighborhoods in the 1980s and was exported, rather than imported, to Central America through the deportation process. Made in the USA, as it were.

I’m not suggesting that these aren’t bad people, but I do believe they will seem less bad once they get their own TV show or movie, both of which have done wonders for the reputations of the Mafia, the Irish Mob, the Jewish Mob and the Chicago Outfit.

Not to be forgotten are the Puerto Rican gangs, who sang and danced their way into our hearts in West Side Story — “I like to be in Amer-di-ca, okay by me in Amer-di-ca …”

That’s the thing, TV shows and movies help American families understand that extortion, murder, prostitution, loan sharking, robbery and other enterprises are pretty cool when Michael Corleone and Tony Soprano are calling the shots.

Or, in 1949’s “White Heat,” the best gangster movie ever made, in which gang leader and enthusiastic killer Jimmy Cagney is turned into a lead-filled bean bag by rifle-toting coppers before he blows himself up by shooting the gas storage tank on which he is happily standing. Now that’s what I call entertainment.

While we all need to take the gang situation seriously, I also suggest that we keep an eye open at home, where crime lords generally are absent.

In fact, it was just the other day that I awoke with a pillow over my face, accompanied by a note that said, “This is your last warning: STOP SNORING!!!”

Point taken, but I think that horse’s head next to me was a little excessive.

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