Have we become such a big city that the terrors of daily life are too routine to report on? Of all the news operations in town, only WANE-TV bothered to carry anything on this:
A neighbor was the target of the drive-by shooting, but the bullets tore through the home of an innocent family. It happened around 4 o'clock Friday morning when the sound of gunshots woke a little girl.
One foot and a little luck. That's all the separated 2-year old Fernada Cruz from a bullet. Her mother Dina Rosas simply says: "It was very scary, very scary."
At least it is known why that particular house got shot up, which is frequently not the case. My mother and sister's house, on Reed Street south of McKinley and just west of South Anthony, was hit by a drive-by several years ago. My sister had been sitting up in bed reading and had just put the book aside and lain down when one of the bullets tore into the wall above her head. If she had read for another minute, she would have died that night. We never learned who shot at the house or why -- although it was one of several drive-bys in the area in a short period, and there was some speculation it was a gang-initiation ritual. I suspect the police didn't investigate it very vigorously, and there certainly wasn't any mention of it in any media outlet.
My mother and sister got out of that house as soon as they could, to an apartment on the north side. None of us have ever been back to that neighborhood again. If I have to drive to anywhere on the southeast side, I give Reed Street a wide berth. A little bit of Fort Wayne died that night, because a few of us lost a little of the faith we had in the city's ability to protect us. This is how whole neighborhoods are lost.
I know a lot of important issues will be debated in the city election. Economic development is crucial, and the infrastructure must be taken care of. But any candidate who does not put public safety at the top of the list does not deserve to be paid any attention to, let alone voted for. If we are afraid to walk out the front door, if indeed we aren't even safe by staying in the house, nothing else matters a whit.