2019 Wrap-Up, 2020 Goals (In February?)
2019 was a pretty stellar year in gaming for me. I unlocked 1,069 achievements worth 31,509 gamerscore and 57,706. With my commitments and schedule I was comfortable with those numbers. What I was proud of was the quality completions I had in 2019. These were Saint's Row: The Third, Titanfall, Forza Horizon 3, Homefront: Revolution, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (Xbox 360) and Dead Space 1 and 2. Titanfall is my proudest completion so far and I had a lot of fun getting it.
2019 also saw me finally start Dead Space, since I had all 3 from Games With Gold. It was one of those titles that I had but just never got the motivation to play. That all changed once I started Dead Space. In a short time I was able to 100% both Dead Space and Dead Space 2, as well as buying Dead Space Ignition even though I am not a big fan of puzzle games. I also bought both books and have read them already. Needless to say, I am invested in the story and the lore at this point. Unfortunately I've heard that Dead Space 3 isn't great, and I have yet to start it.
In 2019 I was also finally swayed by GamePass. I was initially skeptical of the service, as I didn't want to pay a monthly fee for a limited amount of games. I've come around on it now and I'm glad to have it. We received the much-anticipated Borderlands 3 in 2019, and while I still prefer the second installment over this one, it was a solid game and I had a lot of fun with it. I look forward to future DLC and continued support.
Policing in the US continued to be a struggle in 2019. Line of duty deaths totaled 134 for the year, which was actually a -20% decrease compared to 2018, but is still a very high number. This trend is continuing into 2020. As of this writing (2/24/20), there have been 20 line of duty deaths so far in 2020, which is a -17% decrease over this point last year. Hopefully this decreasing trend will continue.
A new concern in law enforcement emerged last year with a handful of states (including mine), adopting "bail reform." For those who are unaware, when someone is arrested for a crime in the US, they can be held on bail. The purpose of bail is to ensure that a person appears in court to answer the charges, and to ensure the safety of the community and the person. For example, if someone is a local resident who has an otherwise clean criminal history and is arrested for a "lower level" offense, they will most likely be released on Personal Recognizance, meaning they don't have to pay any bail and will only be held if they skip court and get arrested again. Conversely, if someone was arrested for a violent crime and had a history of skipping court, they would be held on $5,000 bail and would have to pay $5,000 to get out.
With bail "reform", it essentially gets ride of any cash bail. So someone could be arrested for a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), be released and skip court, get arrested for DUI again, be released, and so on and so forth. It quite literally puts criminals back on to the street and is extremely frustrating for law enforcement and should be quite concerning to community members.
My hope for law enforcement in 2020 is that the line of duty deaths continue to decline, law makers realize the errors of bail "reform" (and hopefully I can get a new cruiser!).