What’s life like in an 89 percent non-white city (77 percent black) on the Fourth of July? Reminder: it’s a date increasingly irrelevant to the people occupying a city once deemed the Paris of the West.
Here you go…
New weapons scanners to be deployed as Detroit fireworks return to downtown, WXYZ.com, June 27, 2022
DETROIT (WXYZ) — For the first time since 2019 in-person fireworks are returning to downtown Detroit. The 64th Ford Fireworks theme this year is “Hey Detroit, The Sky Shines For You!”
In 2020 and 2021 the fireworks were launched off in Harrison Township without spectators because of the pandemic.
So, what does this mean for safety?
DPD is deploying state-of-the-art metal detectors that can pinpoint a weapon like a knife or a gun, visible or under clothes.
DPD is using smart weapons scanners at this year’s fireworks downtown to help curb violence.
In 2015, 9 people were injured by gunfire and in 2017 3 people were hurt in two separate shootings.
Deputy Chief Franklin Hayes says these smart weapon scanners have already been deployed multiple times. You might have seen them at the Grand Prix, Movement, and several other community events.
“With this technology, we will be able to deploy and make an environment safe and weapon-free,” says Deputy Chief Hayes.
Hayes showed us exactly how these smart detectors work. You walk through it just like a normal metal detector but you can keep everything on you. You can step in either one-by-one or two-by-two and these can scan 3,600 people per hour.
“What we’re looking for are these green lines, which means someone is clear,” Hayes says.
And what they’re also looking for is a red box which indicates you might be armed with a banned weapon of some kind.
In March the Detroit City Council approved a 4-year, 1.3-million-dollar contract with a company called Evolv for 10 weapons detection systems. The city used bond money to purchase these weapon detection systems and, in every event they’ve used them at, they’ve proven successful.
“This technology has done exactly what it is designed to do. The time we have had the hits they were, in fact, firearms from those events, and with this technology deployed we had no incidents of violence,” says Hayes.
We asked some metro Detroiters what they thought about the new technology being deployed to keep on-lookers safe during the fireworks.
“That would be very helpful, and I think it would bring more people to come and see the fireworks,” says Mohamed Aldumaeed.
“I would say yes. But I think the most, I think what would really help is if people would just be a little nicer to each other and not be so angry. But I am glad they’re trying to do something,” says Anthony Boyd.
The fireworks are tonight and there will be an 8:000 pm curfew for minors and fireworks will go off as soon as it gets dark.
Over/Under on how many shootings Detroit will see at the July Fourth celebration in 2022?
Safe to say 10 is the floor.
Were Detroit a city still boasting the demographics of say, 1930, would weapons scanners be necessary? No.
In the absence of whiteness, extreme measures are necessary to ensure the safety of those simply trying to enjoy the Fourth of July in the waning days of the American Empire.