Monday, October 3, 2011
Exception, Concentrated, Unspeakable
"Hampsterdam", Baltimore is a fictional social experiment from HBO's The Wire. Drug trafficking and other street offenses were confined into a 'free zone' where police would turn their backs on non-life threatening crimes in order to reduce the crime rate in the remaining parts of the city. An unforeseen advantage of the program included increased outreach of health and social services to at-risk populations. Hampsterdam was eventually shut down however when the media began to publicize the story, forcing city officials to distance themselves from the experiment and blame the zone's development on rogue police officers.