Two women, age 19 and 20, were assaulted less than a block from my house. (it’s 3 houses up, one house over just to be overly detailed about it.) Two men were hiding in the bushes in an alley and jumped out, attempting to abduct them. One woman got away. The other woman was not so lucky, and was subjected to just what you think two men hiding in bushes and kidnapping a woman would do. (May they both burn in hell for eternity and experience the same thing while in prison.)
I often run in these alleys because they A) look like streets from a war-torn city and I can spend some time being grateful for the peace and stability within this country, B) I can pretend that they are a trail somewhere and I can practice my mountain goat-ninja skills by leaping over pot holes and garbage (I envision the garbage being rocks since trail folk are for the most part much more clean than alley folk) and C) the alleys are less pitched than the streets and therefore easier on my IT bands. I don’t run in the alleys after dark simply because I cannot see and/or am blinded by the lights on motion sensors. Either way, it isn’t that much fun. The assault occurred at 1am. Not a time of day I am accustomed to running.
This is what pisses me off. The city is responsible for maintaining the alley. The city’s method is to take a chainsaw on a stick and just buzz back everything to the fence line. It’s efficient, but not very attractive looking. So the neighbors said they would maintain the alley instead. Only, they obviously didn’t. So some people said they would take care of something and didn’t. And look what the fuck happened. Before you grab your sword to defend the honor of my neighbors, don’t. I don’t actually blame them. Obviously, not trimming your shrubs does not cause two grown men to think it is okay for them to hide there and then abduct a woman and rape her. And if my neighbors are at all human, they’ve already beaten themselves up enough about it.
This neighborhood was a crime haven 15 years ago. Neighbors worked really hard to drive it out. And they’ve done very well. I wouldn’t have considered living here if I thought otherwise.
The alleys are all bald now. And the city has decided to install LED street lights in the neighborhood. Fan-fucking-tastic. Because what I really need is a 49328527034895720b34857204 zillion watt light bulb burning a hole through the front of my house, but no lighting in the alleys. That’s really helpful, Seattle, thank you so much.
Hey McGinn- how about those freaking sidewalks you promised YOUR OWN NEIGHBORHOOD two years ago?!?! I don’t want LED streetlights. I want something that differentiates between pedestrian space and vehicle space.
This post was brought to you by the letters R-A-N-T.