BALONEY: Birmingham named 5th most dangerous city

Forbes has again ranked Birmingham as one of America’s Most Dangerous Cities.

This is absolute nonsense and another example of how our “too many” governments are screwing us up and ruining our reputation.

Birmingham is being compared to other cities that include much broader boundaries. There are 37 municipalities in Jefferson County—one of which is Birmingham.  None of the other 36 municipalities are included in our crime statistics.

Forbes is comparing Birmingham with cities like Nashville, Jacksonville, Charlotte, and Louisville which have county-city governance. These other cities include safer bedroom communities in their crime statistics.

Forbes selected St. Louis as the 2nd most dangerous city which is not surprising since St. Louis’ government structure is more perverted than ours. There are 92 cities in St. Louis County and the city of St. Louis is not even in the county.

All cities have urban blight and crime. It’s just that most cities balance their crime statistics between blighted areas and suburban neighborhoods.

Note that Forbes clearly says that these statistics can’t be used to compare one city with another since metro areas are not measured.

And the crimes measured are not likely to impact a casual visitor.  According to Forbes urban homicides tend to come in four forms:

• Women killing their children

• Family members killing each other

• People killing other people they know

• “Stranger crimes”—such as killings committed during robbery or a drug deal gone bad.

“This last category is dwarfed by the other three…and is getting smaller all the time.”

It’s also noted that Birmingham’s crime rate is down 40% from its highs in the mid-1990′s.

And we’re not talking about crime in downtown Birmingham as many people assume. Downtown Birmingham’s crime rate is comparable to Mt. Brook and Vestavia.

Our multiple government entities produce statistics that scare us and our visitors and ruin our reputation.

Let’s turn Birmingham around. Click here to sign up for our  newsletter.  There’s power in numbers. (Opt out at any time)

David Sher is a partner in Buzz12 Marketing and co-CEO of AmSher Receivables Management. He’s past Chairman of the Birmingham Regional Chamber of Commerce (BBA), Operation New Birmingham (ONB), and the City Action Partnership (CAP).

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4 Responses to BALONEY: Birmingham named 5th most dangerous city

  1. David Sher says:

    Terry,
    My wife and I eat at the Fish Market downtown at night a couple of times a month. That means we are there more than 20 times a year and have never had a bad experience.

    If there is so much crime downtown how do you explain the 4,000+ people who live downtown and love it. There are more than 3,000 residential units downtown with virtually no vacancies. You are about ready to see a huge increase in number of residential units because the demand is greater than the supply.

    Terry, how does it serve your best interest to tear down Birmingham? When you are out of state you are from Birmingham. When new business consider moving here, they are making decision based on the reputation of Birmingham.

    That being said, thanks for continuing to give your opinion.

  2. Having lived in cities such as Atlanta, Las Vegas, Miami, and Cleveland, I can definitely say Birmingham is NOT a dangerous city. Even in some sketchy parts of town here, I never feared for my life. Using common sense and having a bit of street smarts can keep you safe in the long run around here!

    • David Sher says:

      Michelle, thanks for sharing your experience in other cities. I think many native Birminghamiams don’t appreciate what we have here. Please continue to comment as you see fit.

  3. Pingback: Damn it! Birmingham's not that dangerous (ComebackTown) | Alabama

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