For seven months, the Rev. Michael Jordan displayed a controversial prayer on the New Era Baptist Church marquee: “Lord, please stop blacks from killing blacks.”
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As 2016 draws to a close, Birmingham’s homicide rate has reached the triple digits. Police say it’s the worst it’s been in eight years.
“I’m not so surprised by it. But shocked,” Jordan said.
According to police, there have been 101 homicides in Birmingham in 2016, compared to three in Hoover, zero in Vestavia Hills and zero in Mountain Brook this year.
“What hurts too is inner-city housing projects. They are a cesspool for drugs and crime,” Jordan said.
For Jordan’s congregation, the homicide rate isn’t just a number. A woman was killed at the GM Lounge last week. Her sister goes to Jordan’s church.
“This murdering and killing is affecting all aspects of the neighborhood, all across the neighborhood,” Jordan said.
He believes the key to fixing the problem is education.
“Most urban cities have a high dropout rate because your gangster rap movement is anti-education, “ Jordan said. “I’m wounded because of the high homicide rate and the perpetrators are black males. And I’m wounded because I’m a black male.”
“Why is this that us as black leaders, where did we drop the ball? Black mayor, black police chief and black inner-city crime,” Jordan said.
Source: WVTM 13 | Marlei Martinez