Tourism in Baltimore: the violence behind the curtain

In Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s third State of the City address, she declared to Baltimore City “The state of our city is now better, safer, and stronger.” Those inside the council chambers met the announcement with polite applause. In Baltimore: ‘The Wire’ or heritage hotbed? we addressed the decrease in the homicide rate and increased safety around the downtown core.

The Mayor’s third State of the City address fell at the beginning of the 2012 Presidential election cycle. At the beginning of the last Presidential election cycle Al Jazeera-English explored poverty and violence in Baltimore City. In this 24-minute program, Al Jazeera’s Avi Lewis looks at Baltimore’s crime problem from an angle often ignored by American mainstream press.

A pre election look at violence in Baltimore (Source Al Jazeera-English, Broadcast 3/29/2008)

Using data and tools provided by Baltimore City’s open data project, Sustainworx takes a look at the extent of the city’s violence.

Powered by Socrata Violent Crime in Baltimore City Maryland (Source: Baltimore Open Data Project)

The crimes reflected in this heat map include homicide, shooting, rape, aggravated assault, and street robbery both with and without a weapon.

Around the time of the Mayor’s State of the City, Al Jazeera returned to Baltimore. This time they were interested in how much things have changed since the election of America’s first African American president. The story airs on Tuesday August 21, 2012. The Baltimore Sun’s David Zurawik offers WYPR  a preview of the documentary during the radio station’s ‘Take on Television’ segment.

Comcast in Baltimore City does not carry Al Jazeera. The presentation will, however, be carried on the network’s website as part of its ‘Faultlines’ series.