Sonya was alone. Eric had been arrested earlier in the morning. “The guys at the bodega said cops came in and took him away. I don’t know why. Maybe he has been running for others. You know how Eric is.”
Hunts Point was filled with talk of arrests. Two major dealers were pinched and the others didn’t want to go outside. Drugs were scarce.
“It’s been an awful day. I was on the Upper East Side when I got into it with some nigger kids. They come around and mess with the white teenage girls, scare them. I tried to stop them, but they got all in my face, called the cops on me. Then I come home to this. I don’t know what he is in for or how long. Its one thing after another.”
8. The War On Drugs
The police, narcotics, and vice all swarmed Hunts Point two weeks ago in a crackdown that netted low-level possession, dealing, and prostitution charges. It also ensnared Takeesha who is now serving a two-month sentence in Rikers.
This is common. Presently ten of my Bronx subjects sit in Rikers or upstate New York prisons on non-violent drug charges.
When I left Hunts Point after Takeesha’s arrest I stopped by a bar close to my home in Brooklyn to write and drink a few beers.
I often do this to collect my thoughts. I try to choose bars without a large drug scene, without lines to use the bathrooms, without annoying coked-out customers. That is hard to do since cocaine, pills, and other drugs are a reality of the Brooklyn and Manhattan bar scene.
The drugs are done by white affluent customers.
I have never seen any arrests. I have never seen anyone worried about being arrested.
The stark difference I see between how drugs are treated in the Bronx and brownstone Brooklyn is jarring but not surprising. The statistics show exactly the same thing.
The war on drugs is a war on the poor.
It is as simple as that.