The less you know, the better the North End is. Or, that's the way I see it.
Before I started my little project of fixing the North End, there wasn't much that I knew. I just knew my garbage wasn't always picked up, and police were on my street all too frequently. And I knew that my neighbours were loud, and dogs barked all night. That was about the extent of what I knew about my street.
We would make jokes about the armed standoff down the street where the Police crouched down behind an old broken fence saying "come out with your hands up". And we got used to asking the Police if we could go home, even if the street was blocked off. We were told just to stay inside once we got there. And nothing ever happened to us. These armed standoffs and road blocks are really just precautions, just incase there really is a gun, and just in case the supposed gun is discharged. But really, how often does that happen. Not often at all.
The less you know, the better it is.
If I am not watching for issues, I don't generally see them. If I don't ask people about issues they have had, I don't know about those either. And if I am not involved in crime, I am not attracting criminals and criminal behaviour to my person or property.
The less you are involved, the less it affects you.
If I am not dealing drugs or using them, I am not affected by those activities. If I am not partying all night with known gang members, I am not affected by their actions. If I am not causing problems for people, they have no reason to cause problems with me.
The less you associate yourself, the less you are involved.
What I am really trying to say is, the North End is not so bad, if you don't look at the bad. It's just a neighbourhood like all the other ones, unless you look down the street.
It's really not that bad.