Crime is spiking in America. That is a fact. It comes at a time when law enforcement is at a low – and heading downward. That is likely one of the reasons – although the anti-police left avoids the obvious by laying the blame on the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic slide.
The drop in effective policing is measurable. It is seen in the upsurge in retirements, the drop in recruitments and the increasing number calling in sick (blue flu?). What is more difficult to measure -- but may be the most important impact-- is the reluctance to pursue and engage with criminals. They know that every take-down looks bad on camera – and if the suspect is killed, it can automatically be turned into claims of abuse or criminality on the part of the officers.
The Covid-19 argument is highly dubious. While home confinement was expected – and did – seem to result in an increase in domestic abuse. Economic downturns tend to result in a measurable increase in crimes of need, such as shoplifting and petty theft. Economic hard times do not generally turn an otherwise honest person into a bank robber.
During the latest month, crime in New York surged to 414 percent – four times – the level of this time last year. That figure does not hardly reflect the tens of thousands of crimes committed during the so-called peaceful protests – crimes in which no one will be prosecuted or even arrested. Imagine what the crime figures would look like if our police were arresting all those committing serious crimes in the name of protest.
Many of these crimes where being committed in the face of hundreds of police who were on stand-down orders. Many of the criminal assaults on the police themselves – even with potentially deadly weapons – were carried out without any response from the very law enforcement officers themselves.
Sadly, the reduction in police enforcement will be most felt in areas where there is traditionally higher rates of crime – especially in the segregated minority communities in our major cities. These are the areas in which police vehicles have been smashed or burned, officers doused with water as the perpetrators laughed and police have been ambushed and physically attacked – occasionally fatally.
Of the 10 million arrests American police officers make each year, only an exceedingly small number are even questionable – much less obvious examples of excessive force or abuse – and unjustified killings – though reprehensible and tragic – are minuscule. It is a fact that many more police are murdered than suspects murdered by police. That is not to suggest that a rogue cop unnecessarily killing a criminal suspect should go without severe repercussions. We just need to keep things in perspective.
The professional criminals and street thugs know that as crime statistics soar, enforcement will diminish. That means the crooks own the streets. It is a lot like one of those old western movies in which the criminal gang controls the town for lack of law enforcement – and they do so until that new tough sheriff shows up in town.
I have spent a lot of time with the average folks in our segregated inner cities. And like that old western movie, the people in the crime-riddled neighborhoods are victimized and scared. They want their freedoms. They want to eliminate the terror of the criminals. They want to stop burying loved ones – including their children – from the gunfire that is heard every night. They want that new tough sheriff.
Ignoring crime in our segregated minority communities has been the standard operating procedure of the Democrat political machines that have run the large urban police departments for generations. They are the government leaders who have handed the stand-down orders. Instead of reforming the police department by weakening it, the people trapped in those environments should think about reforming the city government on the next election day.
If they do not, it may be the police who will not be crossing those yellow “do not cross” crime scene tapes.
So, there ‘tis.
By Larry Horist