“I know that some inarticulate things I said earlier this week have offended people. The message conveyed through media sound bites is not at all what I meant. Complete answers based on data aimed at solutions to gun violence will be edited down to sound bites. It’s my job to make sure even those sound bites are careful. As someone whose strong support is owed in part to the fact that I don’t communicate or make decisions like a career politician, it is my obligation to do better.
“Our office cares deeply about victims and survivors and has done more than any prior administration to support them through our twice grant-funded CARES program that supports gun violence survivors in unprecedented and sweeping ways, requiring greater accountability for contacting survivors and victims, relocation, and my commitment to meet personally with the families of homicide and other crime victims. Ironically, a week before my inarticulate words, media outlets were covering my tears while talking about shooting victims. Those tears were real, as are sleepless nights, and my frustration with a system that for decades has disregarded real solutions to our local and national gun violence crisis but consistently elevated generalized fear over the facts that point to real solutions.
“Real solutions that prevent the next victimization of people who are mostly Black, brown, and poor will never include the illegal stop-and-frisk of half a million young Black and brown people, or a return to mass incarceration paid for by closing libraries, closing public schools, and shutting down treatment and job training. Nationally and locally, we stripped away prevention before and it made gun violence much worse, as this pandemic has proven all over the country. Real solutions require solving more cases with forensics that Philadelphia has never adequately funded. Real solutions include real prevention, fairness that restores community faith in law enforcement, and a laser focus on the most serious crime, which gun violence is.”
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