Residents in the city of Richmond are reeling from a recent shooting spree, including the murder of a 19-year-old. The city has had four homicides so far this year – all committed in public, all during the day. And there have been other daytime shootings. They’ve shocked city residents – because crimes like that are no longer the norm.
KALW’s criminal justice reporter Kyung-Jin Lee joined Holly Kernan in studio to talk about the crime drop in Richmond – and what other cities can learn from Richmond’s approach.
As controversy rages regarding the government's right to regulate health, some have been quick to compare the ideas of government regulation to preventing obesity, to legislation against lung cancer and smoking. While obesity and lung cancer are both health issues, research shows that they aren't as analogous as one might expect. Men who smoke a pack of cigarettes per day have a relative risk of mortality nearly four times higher than the national average. The relative risk of mortality from obesity isn't even close to that; it's 1.5 times the average.
Sixteen percent of people in Richmond live below the poverty line. The city has the highest rate of diabetes deaths in Contra Costa County. But it also has one of the nation’s most progressive mayors, Mayor Gayle McLaughlin.
If you ride BART to its northwestern terminus, you’ll find yourself at Macdonald Avenue and 19th Street, just a few blocks east of downtown Richmond. Macdonald is a four-lane street lined with restaurants, gas stations, and other retailers. I came here to find out how local business owners feel about the soda tax ballot initiative.