Law and order broke down in Atlanta earlier this year, under the inept leadership of Democratic Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. For unclear reasons, the mayor is considered a rising star in the Democratic Party.
The mayor's star may be rising but so are homicides in Atlanta. Big-city mayors like Bottoms, who greenlit anti-police protests and peddled conspiracy theories about systemic racism earlier this year, are now grappling with a very predictable surge in violent crime.
There were three killings in Atlanta during a one-day period over the Christmas weekend. The Christmas slayings brought Atlanta's homicide number to 154, the highest since 1998. Before the three recent killings, a 7-year-old girl riding in a car with her mother and aunt was struck in the head by a stray bullet fired during an altercation between several men outside a Saks Fifth Avenue store. According to Fox News, the child remains in the hospital undergoing treatment.
Fox News reports that at least one Atlanta city councilmember is fed up with the homicides happening under the mayor's watch.
(Via Fox News)
"It is obvious that the civilian authorities do not control the streets and cannot provide even a token feeling of safety beyond our front doors," City Councilman Howard Shook said in a statement on Dec. 22, before the recent slayings.
"To the administration, I don’t want to hear the word 'uptick,'" Shook said. "Stop minimizing our concerns by telling us that 'crime is up everywhere.' Spare us from the lie that the steady outflow of our officers isn’t as bad as it is. And please, not another throw-away press conference utterly devoid of game-changing action steps. It will take a lot to turn this around. But here, in descending order, are the three things we need to begin: 1). Leadership; 2). Some leadership; 3). Any leadership."
The latest string of homicides began when police discovered a body in a park at about 5 a.m. Friday. The victim appeared to have multiple stab wounds, the Journal-Constitution reported. Hours later, police responded to a home where a man with a gunshot wound was unconcsious. He later died at a hospital. Then, just after midnight, a 16-year-old girl was fatally shot during a dispute in a hotel room.
Addressing Shook's criticism, Bottoms told the newspaper that many cities are grappling with an increase in violence crime and discussing it is "not an abdication of responsibility, but an acknowledgement of the widespread severity of this issue."
The mayor said she is open to ideas others may have to better address the problem in Atlanta.
"If there are solutions that we have not explored and enacted, I welcome the suggestions, as I am always open to making the city that I am raising my children in a safer place for us all," she said.
Here's a suggestion for the mayor: support Atlanta's police officers who risk their lives to keep her children safe.