Does Education Matter?:
Surviving and Escaping The Game
Paul Martin
n the first season of HBO’s critically acclaimed, cult
classic series The Wire, one of the central
characters on the series unassumingly utters one of
the most grippingly accurate, yet poignantly crushing
blurbs in the entirety of not only that first season but the
series as a whole. In referencing the drug dealers,
middlemen, and kingpins that the Baltimore Police
Department detectives and investigation team
painstakingly track, record, and interrogate in order to
reduce crime, detective Jimmy Mcnulty states, “Every
now and then we pay a visit to the projects. ‘They’ are
forced to live there” (1.04). This is the haunting reality
of the impoverished lower class in the urban
environment they call home. The people who make the
rules and those who enforce the rules are from an
entirely different world than many of those they police.
Even law enforcement officers, whose jurisdiction
requires they patrol these violent and poor
neighborhoods, only spend parts of their day there;
ultimately, they return home to middle class lifestyles
often in the relative safety of American suburbia.
Because the laws of the land are written in a manner
that don’t necessarily make sense or apply to the
needs of the people in struggling areas, the residents
of these street slums make their own rules based on
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