After some twitter exchanges with Brad Pye, Candidate for Councillor for Ward #10 (Ottawa South), regarding recent shootings, and what can a Councillor do to curb the surge of violence, I initially answered that I see it as a city wide problem, that is outside of a coucillor / ward level, then he asked the question, why there are no shootings in the Glebe?
All is relative, but for Ottawa, to have three similar shootings in little more than an month, is not normal and it’s more than a coincidence, according to google there had been three similar shootings in June 22, July 2, and July 18,in all cases a man was shot twice in the legs, definitely a “signature move”. All victims are refusing to talk to police. List here from the Ottawa Sun.
If we call this shootings Gang related, it’s more probable related to small drug trafficking, and in drugs, there is supply and demand. Unfortunately, Ottawa South is in the supply side, and the Glebe is in the Demand side.
Let’s face it, Canadians are not big league drug dealers, most are small operations, and even, some just cultivate some cannabis during the summer in a cottage as a suplementary income, even some time ago, I read the news that a “big time” Canadian drug dealer from BC, was killed in Mexico by real drug dealers.
What it seems like is that there could be a new supplier in town that wants to corner the market, under his supply and his prices, and it’s playing harder than ususual for the Ottawa league.
Now, what can we do about it, and I can extrapolate this answer with my observations from being a Colombian national, that had seen and lived the “war on drugs”.
There are two paths, both not easy.
One is to keep up the “war on drugs”, never ending, expensive on resources, and from my point of view the only ones that benefit are the weapons manufacturers and dealers who will keep their share and sell to both sides. and even if you capture or kill a drug dealer, the void will be quickly filled by another one. Most Colombians and the government thought that by killing Pablo Escobar, the drug trafficking would end and that the “war on drugs” will be won. Nothing farther from reality.
Other is to legalize “soft” drug (cannabis, hashish) following examples such at the Netherlands, a country with low crime rates. Soft drugs will be freely traded, allowing Police to concentrate on harder targets such as Opium, Cocaine and Meth. Unfortunately, this option, although inmensely popular, its a political sucide in this city.