By Helina Selemon
As our planet grapples with the consequences of man-made climate change and the excessive summer heat it is causing, a lesser-known repercussion is coming to light: its correlation with the uptick in gun-related incidents in America’s cities. But how exactly are rising temperatures and gun violence intertwined, and could addressing the effects of climate change in cities hold the key to curbing this alarming trend?
Near the end of July 2022, the city was in a heat wave. On Tuesday, July 19, a series of oppressively hot 90-degree days began with the humidity hovering above 70% in some places. The air was thick and heavy, the kind of heat that sent streams of sweat down your spine in minutes and made clothes cling to skin like a damp blanket. On some days, the air barely felt like it was moving.
In Central Park that Wednesday, it was 95 degrees. In Tremont and Brownsville, it was about 100 and felt like 105 degrees. In that week and before the following Tuesday was done, shots rang out in 47 different places in the city, leaving six people dead.