The recent attack on the home of a New Bedford police officer was an attack on his neighbors. The neighbors of the officer require extra protection to live.

Decades ago, a program was established to make life in government-funded housing projects safer for the people living there. The program brought police officers into those neighborhoods as residents. Experts recognized that having a police officer in the neighborhood was good for the people in the neighborhood.

Taxpayer-funded housing is to help out people who can't afford market-rate housing at that moment. The income restrictions mean that a police officer can't live in that neighborhood. For decades, these neighbors were prevented from having a police officer living on the same block as them.

The lack of police living in the neighborhood, in addition to other factors, made many government housing projects havens for drug gangs and the violence that comes along with those gangs. The poor people who lived in those apartments were hostage to the gangs. Criminals, flush with cash from the drug trade, lured generations of kids into a world of crime and destroyed their lives.

The New Bedford apartment that was shot up last week was one of those apartments set aside in a housing project for a police officer to live. The program was working; otherwise, the criminal wouldn't have tried to get the officer to leave by shooting up his home.

The criminals want the police out so they can control the neighborhood and victimize the poor people who live in the housing project. Without the police, there will be no stability and there will be no justice.

Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at chris.mccarthy@townsquaremedia.com and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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