Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Losing That “Small-Town Charm”

I am constantly amused at the almost weekly letters in the Daily News from left-wing Idaho residents complaining about how “urban sprawl,” “big box stores,” and “aquifer depletion” are threatening the “small-town charm” of Moscow.

Does anyone realize that yesterday’s shooting death (the fifth in four months) near Genesee gives Latah County a homicide rate of 14.2 per 100,000 residents? That’s higher than the 2005 homicide rates in Miami, Boston, San Fransisco, Charlotte, Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Las Vegas. And the year is just half over.

I realize that the homicides this year are a fluke and I’m not trying to exploit tragedy, but could it be that “small-town charm” has nothing to do with a Wal-Mart Supercenter or a shopping center in the Pullman-Moscow corridor?

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