To Establish Justice, To Insure Domestic Tranquility

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The Milton S. Eisenhower Foundation

Violence, fear of crime, the proliferation of firearms and racism in the criminal justice system have all increased over the past three decades, according to this update on the first National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence, which was formed in the late 1960s after the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy. The report by the Milton S. Eisenhower Foundation, which has carried out the work of the commission, serves as a cautionary balance to the plethora of reports and news stories about the national drop in crime in the mid-1990s. Among other findings: violent crime reported to the FBI increased in big cities by over 40 percent between 1969 and 1998; fear of crime increased more than 30 percent between 1967 and 1998; and the number of firearms in the U.S. has increased more than 120 percent from the late 1960s to the present. All this at the same time that prison-building has increased seven-fold.

The report recommends a different approach: that national policy support reforms in school, youth development, and job training. The report cites several exemplary programs, such as Head Start, the Dorchester Youth Collaborative in Boston, the School Development Plan of James P. Comer, the Argus Learning for Living Center in the South Bronx, and the New Community Corporation. 131 pages. Free. Contact: The Milton S. Eisenhower Foundation (202) 429-0440. E-mail: