Rise In Crime Threatens To Divide Atlanta

Atlanta residents are living under constant fear as the city exceeded 100 murders over the weekend. This is the third time Atlanta Police has reported more than 100 total murders in at least one decade, according to a Fox 5 Atlanta article. 

Like other major cities that protested the killing of George Floyd in 2020, the idea of defunding the police seemed like a viable option to many Atlanta residents in order to combat another form of crime: police brutality. 

Some residents find it hard to trust their safety to local authorities after they have seen friends, family, and neighbors suffer by their actions and policies. Others believe that only an expanding police force could reduce the rising violent crimes.

Residents from Buckhead, a northern affluent, mostly white suburb, are fed up with the violence and want to break away from Atlanta and create their own city. Bill White, chairman and CEO of the Buckhead City Committee, told CNN reporters in June that he is confident in Buckhead City becoming a reality if lawmakers give residents a chance to vote on the matter. 

Critics of Buckhead’s plan to separate fear that it could cause economic damage to Atlanta’s finances. Others fear it could draw some racial tension. 

The city’s mayoral candidates agree that crime prevention is a top priority for Atlanta, but agreeing on ways to achieve those goals are more complicated in a community which remains divided about an expanding police presence. 

After handling a term that involved a pandemic and social justice movements, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has decided not to seek reelection this year.

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