Letter: We don’t feel safe in Asheville

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I live in Asheville, and I’m wondering why people care more about the homeless than the police who are deciding to quit because of the people in charge not backing them up, and [people] running around shooting up places? Should we send mental health workers out on those calls and the break-ins?

Because I’m tired of these people getting away with shooting up places, people terrorizing everyone and turning Asheville into a slum place to live. They need to focus on the projects. I can call it that because I live in one. I’ve seen too many shootings to mention, but nobody wants to talk about it.

The Vance Monument taken down, riots, killings, a casket filled with poop [left at] the police station, yet everyone gets away with this, and the world still thinks Asheville’s this wonderful place to travel to. Carrier Park’s cars get vandalized by people all the time. We don’t feel safe. Is this not a subject worth writing about?

I want Asheville the way it was. Beautiful, peaceful, but until the crime stops, it won’t be, and I won’t recommend anyone to visit this once-beautiful city.

— Name withheld


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29 thoughts on “Letter: We don’t feel safe in Asheville

  1. Robert

    Some of the money squandered yanking down the Vance monument could have been used to hire/train police and perhaps adopt/include aspects of Japan’s Koban method. This could have helped the police and community get to know one another and work in harmony toward mutually beneficial goals. The monument could have been renamed Harmony or Unity Tower and utilized as a teachable moment for children to interact with police, fire fighters, teachers and others who are important in our community. Many other wise citizens have voiced similar visions to myopic elected officials who only care about luring in more tourists…alas, lack of vision and chances gone. Oh, Lost!

    • Lou

      The Vance monument would already be a fading memory if outraged right wingers would move on. Peace starts at home, not on the streets. Too many ignorant selfish people are procreating. How about putting an end to THAT.

      • kw

        Ridiculous comment, Lou. I’m far from a right winger (have never voted Republican) and in fact think Trump and Cawthorn should be locked up. The Vance monument was just an example of yet another lost opportunity in this town to utilize resources properly and see a teachable moment…

  2. Enlightened Enigma

    Decades of non leadership, especially NOW is our problem and the current coterie of womyn are evil intentioned to perform according to the party of slavery, KKK, and destruction. No benevolence, only malevolence. Democrats DESTROY slowly but surely.

    • Anonymous

      Excuse me, “Enlightened Enigma,” but anyone who thinks that the Democratic Party is the party of destruction and the KKK is far from “Enlightened.” Just in case you hadn’t noticed, the Republicans are the ones trying to keep the KKK from becoming irrelevant, they deny election results, and they even deny that climate change and global warming are happening. They deny what the doctors and scientists are telling us about covid and the necessity of vaccination and mask wearing in crowds, some even on their deathbeds. Maybe if we started investing more money back into our educational system that will change, but it’s going to take a long time to get this country back to where most of the deniers will be able to “see the light” and realize they’ve been backing the wrong horse all along.

      • Drew

        Do you blindly imbibe whatever the Federal Government and their “news” outlet cohorts tell you? You must love you some George W.

  3. Mchispas

    Texans are rethinking Asheville as a retirement location. There seems to be a substantial increase in crime and homelessness. While the city seems proud of their bohemian culture, this should be defined more by the arts and music lifestyle. Its disappointing that the the homelessness and crime is redefining the culture in Asheville.

    • Some Guy

      If that’s what it takes to keep Texans from retiring here, maybe I’m ok with it.

    • BRO

      good – we are not really interested in Texans retiring here, especially with the pro violence and anti choice attitudes we see from your state. It is sad that the once great state of Texas is in this condition, but please don’t come here.

    • Zma

      Might I suggest Texans think about retiring to East Tennessee instead. Just as beautiful and Texans have a good reputation there. I used to live in Johnson City and loved it. It’s not as hip as Asheville, of course.

  4. David Bradley

    I teach firearms training courses. The increase in crime and lack of decency in Asheville and other liberal areas has been a major reason I have much more interest now than in the past. People cannot depend on the police and need to be able to defend themselves.

    • luther blissett

      Please explain how being able to shoot a gun works adds decency. Is it something they put in the bullets?

  5. concerned citizen

    “and I won’t recommend anyone to visit this once-beautiful city.” Good! Shilling for the tourism industry is driving the homelessness crisis, the crime, the unrest; all of it. Actual residents are being driven further away from town just to be able to afford rent, they have to pay to go to work because there’s nowhere to park that isn’t being monetized, they get abused the whole time they are at work from the tourists, and then they have to negotiate which group of angry people they have to walk through just to get back home because everybody is pointing fingers at every group they can find except the core problem. Higher hotel tax, property taxes for landlords tied to whether they offer units for 1/3 median income or less, extended hours for public transportation so low paid employees don’t have to spend money on uber rides every day just to get home from work, more available monthly/yearly parking passes, and absolutely no to ‘social districts’ allowing alcohol consumption outside of the bar/restaurant it was purchased from.

    • kw

      Yep, tourism and lurism at the root of all of our problems…I would debate anyone anywhere anytime on this subject and I guarantee I would win.

  6. TexasLimoLib

    The premise of this opinion is wrong. I know they tricked you with the title black lives matter. Obama critiqued that very well as well he pointed out the need to properly reexplain the concept of defund the police so the older whiter poorer folks can understand properly. You see what they mean is its time to stop making people poor by punishing them for being poor and then shooting them to death when their poorness leads to mental health emergencies. Also and its sad I need to point this out to the post maker, black children and young people are often murdered because white people who like football and other violent sports get head injuries and make them very violent and scared then they become police officers.

    So in conclusion, in addition to tearing down slave owning hero monuments in the middle of your towns next to your county court houses from a time of reconstruction when the south was embarrassed and trying to make itself feel better about fighting to death for rich old white slaver owners, perhaps train a couple dozen cop recruits to work as community social and mental health workers. That’s what they meant. I know it was hard to parse and the GOP reacted normally with faux outrage mostly because brain damage.

    Dear poster, I dont mean to make you feel badly. I suggest you do a little better with your reading and seek out competing views. Turn off your cable tx misinfo machine, infact, cancel that, and save some money. There is this press group called the Associated Press and its free to access and most of the news you see or read starts from this and they still have journalistic integrity. If you fail to do this and keep eating the cable news which keeps you on edge with sensational 247 hatefulness you will lose any chance at gaining understanding and support of your fellow citizens. Its not your fault, the politicians need to keep you angry so youll vote and they can keep their power structures which are mostly corporate ceos full and happy.

    And we selected Asheville because they tore down their civil war monuments and we like the art and history. Im certain Carrier Park would do well with a nice dose of gentrification and if you get on board early you might be able to cash in and sell out. Alternatively in Austin where Im from, the city purchased land under older folks houses and made a deal that they could just pay property taxes on the improvements. Then when the older folks went away the city had a private corporation refurbish the houses even the old lead paint was abated and the city could then produce a nice offset profit on the investment. It was a total win win. The whole east side of town is booming where once back in the 90s was just block after block of crack houses.

    I hope you make it through and as happily as possible. And that`s definitely your choice, obviously. Maybe sometimes I think conservatives are simply not happy people. They always seem to find fault in others. Act piously. And desire to punush the other whomever that will be. Not that thats you, but that is your choice. Peace to Carrier Park.

    • Drew

      At no point did OP mention anything about politics or race. Are you familiar with the term projection?

    • Chris

      Hey TexasLimoLib,

      I absolutely love posts like yours, because they’re such a teachable moment.

      I don’t mean to make you feel badly, but a quick internet search can reveal to you that there are several Confederate memorials still in place (yikes! better pack the bags!)

      I don’t mean to make you feel badly, but I’m sure you’re aware that Buncombe and Asheville’s black population shrank, largely due to people emigrating here (that wouldn’t be you, would it? You know, the kind of people who can afford to move across two time zones with all of their possessions?)

      I don’t mean to make you feel badly, as I adore your mantra of not finding fault with others in a post entirely critical of the opinion you disagree with that’s full of assumptions that are not stated, but welcome to Asheville, and learn some history.

      • TexasLimoLib

        Its true. Its not just true here either. People have been immigrating and emigrating forever from every place to every other place. And rich people no matter how rich they get know there are always people out there that can outbid them on whatever it is on the auction block of life, especially in a capitalistic society. Additionally the old adage still rings true, buy low and sell high. If one fails to compete they still lose. But then again the same applies of how low can you go philosophies. Nothing prevents someone from moving to the woods, except perhaps its cold and muddy. So yeah I wont address race in fact I will refuse. Except to say its time the rest of the hate based civil war relics come down especially in public places no matter what google says.

        And I dont buy, I rent and invest in REITS and Munibonds. So, say what you will we will be traveling again next summer because Texas is hot and make our choices to see the wold slowly. I think Mr Vandebuilt owned some trains and even built his own tracks. That said we love the Black Mountain College and that education by doing approach the artists of the bahaus gifted the USA from here in NC. I guess I mean its Ok to realize this place is awesome and fight to stay here, but dont whine and cry if you did nothing to win.

        Im not trying to hide anything just saying it as I feel it. The GOP poor are the worst hypocrits ever because they fail to grasp the safety nets the DEMS have built over 80 years. That said SOMETIMES the gop has good ideas, but not in the last 30 years or so as far as I can tell. Enjoy Life Yo.

    • WNC

      According to FBI statistics
      40 % of murdered police are killed by African Americans.
      A police man is 18.5 times more likely to be killed by an African American that a black civilian to be killed by police
      African American police officers are 3,3 times more likely to discharge a fire arm at a crime scene (if you patrol in a neighborhood with more crime I would expect you use your fire arm more often)
      12% of White and Hispanic death were due to police officer
      4% of Black deaths were due to police officer

      If your speed more don’t be surprised if you receive more speeding tickets. If you want to discuss why a particular potion of the society speeds more that’s a different discussion.

      I don’t care if you live in Texas or Tennessee the conflated assumptions your spewing are greatly off base.

      • luther blissett

        Just for the record: precisely one Asheville PD officer has died in the line of duty in the past 50 years. That was the officer who drove off the Bowen Bridge while speeding and not wearing a seat belt.

        • WNC

          Just for the record the F in FBI stands for Federal and the statistics are accurate as quoted.

    • Worker Bee

      Are we reading the same letter? The OP says they live in the projects and is disappointed with the security provided by the city and is exhausted by the violence they witness in their neighborhood. I don’t think your advice to them about “get{ting} on board early” to “cash in and sell out” applies here.

      • TexasLimoLib

        Actually it might apply, but only if the community can address the underlying issues and be prepared for the coming onslaught of development. There are two methods for this individual. Move to a cheaper town or enlist young workers to improve the neighborhood and actively work against violence. Sitting back complaining and doing nothing will accomplish nothing.

        As we write an article was released about the police finding new recruits easily. Certainly this signifies Asheville is popular and attractive. To that I predict housing prices AND POPULATION in Asheville doubling by 2030. When the OP wants to sell they should have no problem and profit nicely.

        In Austin a public corporation was developed called the Austin Revitalization Authority. They managed the low and fixed income loan programs which had to use lotteries for applicants and also limited sales times and profits so developers flipping was discouraged.

        These are complex issues. There are solutions that work and though some scream GENTRIFICATION!!! Everyone benefits eventually even the whiners.

    • TexasLimoLib

      Fist Name
      Last Name
      Mothers Maiden Name
      Social Security Number

      Your reply will help us out.


  7. blueridgeguvnor

    AVL has EXACTLY what it voted for. This is what you get with feckless, pandering, intellectually bankrupt Leftist garbage.

    Asheville is transforming into Portland in real time.

    If Mannheim is re-elected, AVL will never recover.

    • C-Law


      Your post wins the thread! Congrats!

      I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—Asheville and Buncombe County have gotten EXACTLY the governments they DESERVE!!

      I personally seceded from those locations a few years back, went “Galt” so to speak, but I must admit I thoroughly enjoy watching the implosion from a nearby, yet reasonably safe distance! Ha!

    • TexasLimoLib

      Portland is a beautiful city with great weather and an active community which encourages free speech and community action. 50% of the electorate will find Asheville`s more liberal approaches extremely attractive. The rest should stay out and those who can`t stand it should cash in and move out. Its relatively GREAT compared to the rest of the southern parts of the truly central american continent! Name calling is fun though. Have you tried more fiber?

      • blueridgeguvnor

        Free speech in Portland haha that’s hilarious ask the reporters who were assaulted about that. Mostly peaceful right ? Keep drinking the Kool Aid.

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