MINNEAPOLIS - Crime prevention on the north side of Minneapolis is a good idea; it's a great idea when it's done in the community by its community.
"We are going to talk gangs, kids, violence in our community," Mad Dads President VJ Smith told passers by as he handed out flyers for a peach rally Saturday on Friday night.
Foot soldiers, in uniform were the violence prevention group Mad Dads as they went car to car, person to person with the pitch for peace at the intersection of Lowry and Emerson Avenues.
Come rally as one in the community where crime sadly has taken residence and un-invite it was the theme.
"We are not FBI. We don't do police work. We let them do their jobs, but we know how to reach our people. We know how to talk to them about their needs and resources and that is what we want to plug them into," Smith said of the north side community.
The reasons to unite are clear. According to a study by the city, the number of gun incidents in Minneapolis is at its highest rate in six years. In north Minneapolis, robberies are up 39 percent compared to last year.
With more guns than ever actions have to speak louder than shots. Urgency is warranted, and that's why this intersection was taken over Friday night.
And that's why Mad Dads say they will do this again and again, seven nights a week, all summer.
"Every time somebody brings a gun in, maybe, hopefully, somebody is bringing somebody else to church. Every time they bring a gun, hopefully we take somebody to a trade school or a college. We may not match gun for action, but we are going to try our best. It's better than not being here at all," Smith said.
The rally will be held Saturday afternoon from 2 to 4 p.m. at Shiloh Temple on the north side. Anyone is welcome to attend. Shiloh Temple is located at 1201 W. Broadway in North Minneapolis.