After the shooting in downtown Orlando that left seven injured this past weekend (post HERE), Orlando city leaders have implemented a plan that will serve as mostly a deterrent to armed troublemakers looking to get drunk and hurt others.
It’s a decent plan. Look, protecting an area like downtown Orlando is not easy. It’s downtown. If you do anymore, you’re going to risk militarizing the area, and then you might as well just close the place down.
But even with the planned protection points and gun sniffing dogs, there are a labyrinth of back entrances and alleys which will allow the bad guys to get in.
You know what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the alleys next to Church Street. I’m talking about the adjacent doors that can grant access to Wall Street, where the shooting took place. It’s not an invincible plan. Before the incident, we already closed down streets and placed cops on every corner.
Then there is this trend with troublemakers using fireworks to panic crowds. Honest question. Can those canines sniff the fireworks? I mean, it’s combustible powder. Right? Just thinking out loud.
Downtown Orlando nightlife also has a serious drug problem. There are people doing cocaine and taking pills in plain sight. What are we going to do about that?
The real solution is working with the venue management. There are some bad club employees out there. They’ll enable the drugs. They’ll enable the guns. They will overserve until customers are puking all over the dance floor. All because some of these people are their friends.
At that point it doesn’t matter what the cops do. They’ve got the very people they’re protecting undermining them.
The nightlife violence problem in Orlando is complicated. I’m not going to pretend to have all of the answers. But this plan is a band aid, which won’t stick to the wound forever.
Ultimately, Downtown Orlando is going to have to decide if Downtown Orlando becomes safer.