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Tipsheet

Imagine That: NYC Learns That Enforcing the Law Reduces Criminal Activity

AP Photo/John Minchillo

The upshot of these outcomes in New York City -- where the mayor seems alarmed by the electoral fate of his Chicago counterpart, and who's been sounding much more hawkish on crime lately -- is entirely unsurprising.  The enforcement of laws, including consequences for lawless actions, is a bedrock value of our society.  It doesn't exist because it's a tradition that feels comforting, or because it appeals to some innate sense of fairness, though both of those things are also true.  It primarily exists because it works.  Lawlessness breeds lawlessness.  Impunity for, and coddling of, criminals leads to more criminals and more crime.  And faithful enforcement against 'lower level' crimes fosters a climate in which 'higher level' crimes are deterred and reduced.  This is all common sense, but obvious realities evidently need to be repeated and underscored for a lot of people who've grown dangerously delusional about law enforcement -- including many elected officials and members of the media.  So this is an unremarkable development that nevertheless must be remarked upon:

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A light at the end of the tunnel? City subway crime has dropped so far this year to levels not seen in decades aside from the pandemic — as cops significantly ramped up their crackdown on fare evasion, doling out nearly 10,000 more summonses in 2023 than at the start of last year. Police figures show major crime on the subways is down 21.5% year to date compared to the same period in 2022 — with every category of serious felonies but one in the underground system showing a decrease. Burglaries remained flat, with two reported. “Obviously, crime is down. We’re proud. This is real progress,” Transit Chief Michael Kemper told a small group of reporters inside One Police Plaza on Tuesday...At the same time, cops have issued a staggering 75.6% more fare-evasion tickets over the first nine weeks of 2023, totaling 21,360 compared to 12,154 tickets over the same time last year, according to police data. Overall, all summonses were up by more than 12,000 — or an 83.5% increase from 15,143 for the same period last year to 27,785 so far this year, the data shows. Kemper credits pro-active policing on minor offenses as well as serious crimes with helping drive the recent decrease.

Much less ambivalence and looking the other way on fare-jumping (which is ubiquitous in crime-riddled Washington, DC, and is not 'victimless,' as some progressives argue) is leading to significantly fewer crimes that most people would deem to be more serious.  Respect for rules and laws matters. Enforcing criminal laws is not 'unjust' or an affront against 'equity.'  Just the opposite; enforcing criminal laws disproportionately protects law-abiding people in disadvantaged communities who are most at-risk for victimization.  It is the right thing to do, it is the safe thing to do, and it is the pro-fairness and pro-justice thing to do.  Speaking of DC, and cultures or systems in which criminals are allowed to run amok, listen to this statistic from the police chief in our nation's capital:

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Eleven arrests, on average, before graduating to murder.  What a disgrace.  And it's a lesson criminals are being taught by the people charged with enforcing the law -- often under the destructive guise of compassion, equity, or some other feel-goodery.  It's not always the case, but far too often, criminals who are conditioned to effectively get away with lesser crimes are emboldened to escalate, and they end up doing things like killing their victims, or murdering cops.  By the way, Washington, DC this week surpassed the 100 carjackings mark, year-to-date.  


We're barely more than two months into the calendar year, so that's a clip of more than one carjacking per day so far, with no end in sight.  The mayor's office has offered steering wheel locks for certain makes and models of cars, due to the grand theft auto epidemic, which is an embarrassing bandaid, at best.  The pro-statehood city council, in its infinite wisdom, voted overwhelmingly to reduce criminal penalties for an array of crimes, including carjacking.  It's so reckless that national Democrats have felt politically compelled to reject DC home rule and intervene with some adult supervision, having had their hand forced by Congressional Republicans.  

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I'll leave you with my interview with Georgia's Attorney General, whose office has been doling out domestic terrorism charges to ANIFA mob members involved in violent, politically-motivated crime outside of Atlanta.  The left-wing and non-credible Southern Poverty Law Center -- which much of the journo class cites as an authoritative source on 'hate' and extremism' (this horrifying incident got memory-holed almost immediately, by the way -- has found itself caught up in these crimes.  They're blaming the police.

UPDATE - You can't make this up:


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