EDITORIAL: Making Macon a more peaceful city one day at a time

July 9, 2014 

Macon-Bibb County has gotten a reputation of violence, so much so that it’s hard to believe the area hasn’t had a homicide in the last 34 days. For a time, the back-to-back-to-back killings were almost seen as routine. Even violence outside the city’s communities were attributed to Macon.

Helping to bring attention to the lack of violence is former political candidate Danny Glover. He started a campaign through social media called Macon30. He and others now plan to take the effort a step further and travel to various communities where violence has been prevalent and set up neighborhood watch and cleanup campaigns. Will this help? Every little bit helps and it certainly won’t hurt. The more ordinary citizens do to stop the violence the better off we will all become.

In the next phase, Macon60 hopes to set up a “beef hotline” -- an 800 number people can call with a community mediator on the other end of the line who can help diffuse tense situations. Will it work? Sometimes having a disinterested third party listen and dissect a situation can help keep the peace.

Much of the violence is spawned by domestic drama, alcohol and social media gripes and those who are professional criminals. Having someone listen while the parties involved blow off steam may keep them from drastic, physical violence. Crisis Line and Safe House of Central Georgia has been doing this type of work for decades with a focus on sexual violence. Having another outlet won’t hurt.

Glover’s Macon60 campaign needs more soldiers, more adherents to the cause of making Macon a more peaceful city. It won’t happen overnight, but over many nights. Will the effort be a total success? We can only hope.

As Glover said during a media conference Monday to tout 33 days without a murder, “Our job doesn’t end here. There is much more to be done.”

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