Memphis has problems, you have answers

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Memphis is a city with a name dating back to ancient Egypt, but it’s a city facing 21st century plagues.

There are failing schools, lack of leadership, crime and continuing issues with youth.

Tonigh at 6 p.m. we will spend an hour looking at how we can work together to fix those mistakes, create trust and put ‘Memphis: on a Mission’ for greatness.

You can tweet us your ideas @3onyourside and tell us on our Facebook page.

To see some of the great things happening in our area, click Here and Here.



  • atjohnson

    Two sources to Memphis’ problems…Lack of emotional control & greed. Poverty is no excuse. People aren’t killing for a loaves of bread! They’re killing because they are angry, want something someone else has, or for sport. I have never lived in a city with so many angry people…people with chips on their shoulders. There are too many people who choose to blame others for their situation. I used to live in a small town, but even the worst addicts kept a job and supported their own habits, so they didn’t break in you home. Totally different culture. There are some seriously toxic sub-cultures here that are trying to become the dominant culture.

    • ScienceMom1

      I agree with you wholeheartedly. I returned after 31 years, I do live an hour east of Memphis in a small town that now has two private prisons. I think the entire regions has small towns, like mine, that have pockets of problems like you talk about. I have cried for nearly nine years,almost every day for leaving a really good (and probably too sheltered) life near San Francisco. As a female scientist, it has also been tough. The anti-intellectual, anti-education atmosphere and the lack of tolerance for those who are different is astounding. My parents never returned while alive although they are now buried here, my siblings will not move back. While every place has problems, I am just deeply saddened at the backwards nature of the area. How very sad. Thanks, ATJOHNSON. For me and a couple of childhood friends who have returned, it has been some serious culture shock. I have to work at forgivning myself for coming “home.” I don’t know if I ever can. forgive myself but I do know that I have met some good people despite the problems. Still, I mourn for a once great place, both Memphis and my little town.

  • F

    The good educated people are leaving because (1) Memphis is extremely dangerous, (2) no leadership, (3) the schools stink, and (4) taxes. When King Willie was running things he told the white demons to leave if they did not like the way he ran things. The schools, even though they were well funded, were degraded under his administration. Under Wharton’s and Willies administration they squandered a large amount of tax payers money. Because of that the current administration lost the city schools and demoralized all the city employees. The demoralized police force is expected to fight and lower crime, yea right! [A large corporation has a choice of two cities: The first city (A) has a low tax rate but it has an uneducated work force, the schools are terrible, the city is unkempt, and it is rated as one of the most dangerous cities. The second city (B) has a higher tax rate but it has an educated work force, good schools, low crime rate, is well managed, and it is very well kept.] Will a company in city(B) leave for city(A) just to lower its taxes?

    • NumbersMan

      You forgot lack of middle-class sector jobs and how whites are discriminated against at the work place. The people running Memphis got what they wanted. There is no way it can be fixed now. I simple economist could tell WREG that, maybe they should hire one. The truth is, it won’t get better until after it falls apart and it will be through the help of Emergency Federal assistance. The only way to get better now is through the fire, no stopping it now. It is inevitable.

  • Kenneth Allen Sr.

    The one solution that will remedy many of the problems that Memphis faces has been ignored for decades. That is our downtown area. Revitalizing the downtown mall and surrounding areas would do more for the city than any other projects. A city’s downtown is the heartof

  • I already have a solution

    Looking for solutions?? I get so tired of this liberal philosophy I could barf. Midnight basketball, community centers, a zillion programs for the “children” and nothing changes. The only thing working about those programs is the money being siphoned from the taxpayer to those on the inside. Like the Daycare scandals. One doesn’t need to look for an answer, the answer is punish those who commit the crimes. You don’t let them out on a bond of $100-$1000, wait 2 years to make a plea deal, and then let them walk for time served or probation. The whole thing is a farce. Here is a solution: Commit a crime with a gun, 10 years no parole. Do it again, Life with no parole. I GUARANTEE you the violence will end immediately when the word hits the street. There is your solution. Aint gonna happen. Too much money and too many jobs involved with this criminal industry complex for that to happen.

  • HPalmer

    Failing schools, crime and continuing issues with youth. That is not 3 problems. That is one problem. This whole problem with schools, youth and crime can be traced back to Lyndon Johnson and his Great Society and the rules imposed under that idiotic concept. Have a child with no father and you get free food, free healthcare, $50 a month housing, a monthly check and a year end bonus called the Earned Income Credit. There are side programs like free utilities, WIC, and grant based programs that also add to the pot. There is no age limit for this stupidity, even a 13 year old qualifies. Have a Daddy at home and the freebies are reduced tremendously or cut out altogether. Even putting a daddy name on the birth certificate can cause some of these freebies to be reduced. What kind of idiotic government rewards people for being lazy and immoral? Then throw in the lack of leadership that has the same mentality as those living on the government plantation and that is like pouring gasoline on a fire. There is a huge segment of society that lives this lifestyle and ti covers all races and even people coming into this country illegally. It just defies belief that people keep electing these socialists/communists under the Democrat flag that keeps adding more and more giveaways to this insanity. We are a nation in decline..

  • hugh jazzol

    best solution iv found is on studies done at nukemap 3d looks like using the liberty bowl as ground zero, 1 B61 gravity bomb would do the trick, ,either that or 40 days and nights of rain

  • gypsy lee

    the first thing we need to do is get rid of wharton and his cronies, elect a new city council, reinstate the police and firemans beneficts, until this is done nothing will change

  • Thomas H. Evans

    Great comments! You can see the frustration in these comment due to the total lack of leadership by our mayor and city council (let’s start there). Kenneth Allen, Sr. is on target about the downtown area. I’ve been here since 1998 and have seen little or no change in the downtown area as it relates to at least getting business owners to do something to improve the appearance of their businesses, especially those within three or four blocks of City Hall. As many of us know that there is a huge problem with crime in this city, the Mayor, Police Director and DA, continue to try and convince us that we do not have a crime problem. We pretty much know where the crime is taking place every day in this city, yet that is not where we have the concentration of our police. We also have “RACE” issues in this city and they are not going away until the entire community recognize this fact and become determined to do something about it. One or two meetings a year is not the answer to this problem, why, because there is a lack of trust among the people, both black and white. Until we are able to address this issue and call it what it is, this city will never move forward. The education problem is well covered by others commenting on this page, and it is true. How do you have better educated kids if you fail at educating them? (THE)

    • NumbersMan

      Can’t upgrade the downtown area without money. Can’t clean up the city without money. Can’t upgrade the infrastructure without money. The problem is money. You can’t spend money unless you make money. To make money, you have to attract money. Memphis is doing the opposite. Right now, Memphis is spending more money than it’s bringing in at an alarming rate, which will soon lead to economic collapse. Memphis must focus on bringing middle-class sector jobs, but it’s not likely to happen because of the crime, the tax rate, unwilling leadership to attract, and the general ignorance of the populous. It’s not going to happen. Not enough money to fix the problems to attract money. Memphis is now stuck in a catch-22. It is now inevitable…collapse is going to happen and there is nothing that is going to stop it.

      Once the collapse happens the majority of Memphis will receive a harsh realty check. The will have reaped what they have sown. It will be poverty at the lowest level, pure bedlam, and ruin. It will be the worst city in the history of the United States. Only at that lowest point will they finally begin to look inward and will be willing to correct the issues. After that it will take many years for Memphis to finally return back to its golden years, but it will. It just won’t be for another 20 to 50 years. As for us, we don’t plan to wait it out. Most of our family has moved because their employers moved elsewhere, we are right behind them. This is for real, it is going to happen. I suggest you either move while you can or start prepare for the desperate times ahead, now.

      • NumbersMan

        To add, I suggest you avoid moving to surrounding counties because they will be damaged by the economic fallout. Plus, the crime will migrate to the surrounding counties. It’s going to be hell on earth and I pray we make it out in time, as I hope you, or anyone with good sense, do as well.

  • Christine

    I do not have a problem living in Memphis. My husband I moved here over twenty years ago. My husband and I are well educated and financially stable. We chose to live in Memphis because in this city you can get a home, where you could more value for your money. Most of the whites stayed. Elderly blacks and whites here, can go for walks or work in their yards without being fearful. No neighborhood on this earth is immune to crime. When you have a active neighborhood association and a active neighborhood watch program this helps to deter crime. The only problems we sometimes incur is when a homeowner dies and their family turn the house into a rental property. The people they rent it to, sometimes stand outside playing loud music and using profanity. My husband approached one of these tenants in a respectful manner and explained to the young man that no one wants to come out of their front door listening to all that profanity. After that we did not have any other problems with them.

  • timsimpsomwearspantyhoseeverydaytowork

    Implement a Singapore style justice system, where all violent or sexual crimes are subject to an additional penalty of a certain number of strokes of the cane administered at a public place for all to witness. This would be in addition to the prison sentence.
    You would see many gang members and assorted thug types bawling like little girls as they receive their justice.

  • Christine

    The only way to deter gun violence in this city, is to go after the gun suppliers that are making illegal gun sales. Also we need to change we educate our children. They keep coming up with these nonsense education programs. I graduated from a high school in Connecticut. Back in those days, education was not a big business as it is today. The school I graduated from had different education track. Since my goal was to go to college, I was in the college prep program. If a student was interested in clerical jobs, they were placed in the business administration track. Also if a student wanted to be a nurse they were placed in a program where they spent a certain amount time each day at a hospital. They took classes like biology, anatomy. These programs allowed a student to receive a high school diploma as well as a certificate in a certain trade. When a student graduated they had the skills that made them employable. The reason that it is not being practiced today is that you have all of these for profit trade schools. A friend of mine paid over $7,000 to become a pharmacy tech. There are so many occupations that can be taught at a high school level.

    • Gun suppliers LOL

      Your logic is seriously flawed. You moved here because you get more house for the money? Then you should be in Detroit. You can get triple the house for half the price. Then you start on gun suppliers making illegal gun sales!! LOL Do you think these 15 to 18 year olds are buying guns? They steal them. Next you start on school programs. When these kids are getting pregnant at 13 and the boys are dropping out at 12 no program in the world is going to work. You obviously have no clue of the black community. They will openly tell you they aren’t going to study a white man’s book, work a white man’s job, or even speak white man’s English. They refuse to celebrate July 4th instead opting for Juneteenth. Christmas is out and Kwanza is in. Some black politicians refuse to say the Pledge or stand for the National Anthem. I don’t know what planet you live on but it sure isn’t earth. Maybe you are just one more CT resident who has fled the taxes and regulations that state has imposed on its residents. And the real kicker is your husband politely ask someone to stop playing profane music and they did!!! One thing is certain, you are a Democrat.

  • Phil Cook

    I spent 30 yrs. working for the Memphis Fire Dept. I started in 1967 when Memphis had a commission form of Govt. In the fall of “67” Memphis voted to change to a City Council Govt. The worst mistake Memphis ever made compounded by the idiots they elected. There were commercial real estate Co. owners, land developers and 2 building supply owners and a variety of other self serving idiots on it. The biggest problem was Wyeth Chandler, a lawyer who hated unions, and it’s employees. Within 3 months of the conversion he and the City council had the garbage workers on strike which brought Martin Luther King to Memphis and the rest is history. Memphis hasn’t had decent leadership in either the Mayor’s office or the city council since. Wharton and the current council are a part of a long line of incompetent clowns trying to run a city with no idea what they’re doing. If the people of Memphis don’t find someone from outside Memphis with experience to run a city and elect them, Memphis will go under in less than 10 yrs.

    • E.L. Cavens

      amen! I don’t know why, but we have never recovered from all of the corruption Herrington put us through. He took this nice little city down quickly. All of the changes he made had a large ripple effect on the community. We’ve always had crime and crazy people here, but the lack of jobs and progress on a whole have left no where for people to turn. If you train all of the kids and young adults to move this city up the scale, and there is no where for them to work but fast food places, how do you ever expect to make the money for the taxes it takes to run a large city. And people go overboard here on pride and emotions when they have a problem. I mean just look at the examples the citizens and children have had just on the board of commissioners. Those ghetto fabulous pill popping alcoholics have finally been weeded out, so maybe we can see a difference soon.

  • Ken Twiss

    I was in Detroit two days ago and the thugs saw my Shelby County tag and shied away. Now that tells a story.

  • Kay

    It’s too late,this is going to I be Detroit soon, move while u can if possible before u or your family gets hurt or killed

  • J. D. Gilway

    When a person or community loses its capacity, to seek and accept Truth, to think or act from a sound mind, to reason right from wrong, to morally police itself by biblical standards, then the capacity for evil is intensified at every level and passed from generation to generation until both, the person or the community, is destroyed.

  • d

    I m so tired of the dumb comments about Dr. Herrington! This city was named one of the clean and beautiful city in America. Yeah there was crime but is that his fault? Blacks got city contracts and were included at the table of business. When you disenfranchise a sector of the population this is what you get. AC is corrupt as this city council but I dont hear any of you blaming the members of the clown council that are benefiting from deals that are clearly illegal. Beale St, redbird stadium, sears crosstown, walking bridge to Ark, check who will gain from this waste of tax payers money!

  • ajwarr

    Like any other major city in America, Memphis has its positives and its negatives. Like Christine, I’m from the east coast and there is a lot of underutilized potential I see here. I think it hurts that there are so many people in Memphis (white & black) who are from Memphis so it’s hard for native Memphians to see the potential and jewels clearly. I also think that if people who are commenting on this board feel so negatively towards Memphis then you really should move; I don’t think it’s good for ANYONE, no matter where you live to feel so negatively about your place of residence. You will never find joy or peace and that unhappiness and discontent will affect your attitude and those around you that are affected by your attitude. My contribution to the mission: I don’t think it’s fair to compare Memphis to New York City, San Francisco or Dallas. However, you can compare it to Nashville, Charleston, Virginia Beach or even New Orleans. Memphis has a unique flavor that needs to be cultivated and marketed. However, I think Memphis can look to comparable cities for fresh ideas to see what their doing. I also believe there should be some type of commission or committee made of people who are current residences of the city but are from other areas, who can offer ‘outside’ opinions. Finally, I believe there needs to be research that goes back to the last time period of the Golden Years for Memphis and look at what changed that impacted the city so negatively.

  • F

    Crime is at the center of most of the problems in Memphis. It keeps good jobs from coming to the city and is forcing people to leave, reducing the tax base. The leadership is destroying the police departments; the thin blue line protecting the citizens from the criminals. Destroying the fire department assigned to saving lives. Destroyed the school system assigned to educate the next work force. The only solution is to vote these clowns out of office in the next elections.

  • Mary Jo

    I believe if Memphis defeated Kansas in the national championship game a few years ago, it would have solved a lot of the racial problems that exist in Memphis. The Memphis Tigers were galvinizing the city with one goal and that was a national championship, in which would have drugged Memphis out of the mud, in the eyes of America. Black and whites would have truly had something in common as a reason to sit at the same table and talk about!

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