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write down detroit

"What Are You Doing?"

On Tuesday this week while I was teaching, I received a torrent of texts from a neighborhood text chain. The text chain is typically used for neighborhood safety, letting people know if your house was broken into, or if something suspicious is happening, or if you hear gunfire on your block. I find it useful even though I don’t know everyone on it, and I think having it is important. I have certain questions about who is on the chain and who is not, and what that might mean, but I will put that aside for a moment. The texts that were coming through detailed a robbery on Tuesday afternoon. Most of the folks on the chain seem to be highly aware of who is responsible for most theft in the neighborhood, so the question was asked: why can’t the police catch these guys? They’ve stolen thousands of dollars worth of items from my neighbors, including (insanely) someone’s entire security system.