Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.
At his State of the Union address, Biden embraced the slogan, “Fund the Police.”
While it was nice of the titular figure of a radical party that is still trying to lynch police officers across the country for doing their jobs to propose funding the police, that’s not the issue.
And somewhere in his last endangered brain cell, even Biden knows that.
Despite that being the slogan of Black Lives Matter, little actual police defunding has taken place outside of a few major cities. Many police departments could use more resources, but the massive crime wave that cities are faced with is not about a lack of police funding.
What happened wasn’t that police were defunded, but that new laws and the enforcement of existing laws and policies changed the crime landscape so that many behaviors that used to be criminal were no longer treated as such while standard police tactics were criminalized.
The release of large numbers of prisoners during the pandemic to protect them from COVID along with the refusal of pro-crime prosecutors, particularly those funded by Soros, and pro-crime judges to actually lock up offenders turned low crime rates into high crime rates.
Funding the police doesn’t do anything except take offenders off the street for a few hours.
There have been a multitude of accounts out of San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and other major cities of monsters who are arrested for violent attacks, who are released only to carry out another attack and then are promptly released all over again.
Frank Abrokwa smeared his feces on a woman in the New York City subway, was arrested, released, and then committed an anti-semitic hate crime, and then was released again.
He had punched a man on the subway in January and another man at a bus station in February.
Nothing in the NYPD’s $5 billion budget is going to make a serious dent in the reign of terror posed by Abrokwa and a few thousand junkies, criminals, vagrants, and crazies like him as long as New York State’s effective elimination of bail continues releasing monsters like him.
Beyond stationing a police officer every 10 feet, funding the police won’t fix this nightmare.
Despite 44 prior arrests, Abrokwa continued to be freed because New York State, under Cuomo, had tossed out bail. Cuomo crony, Gov. Kathy Hochul, insisted that she will not lock up criminals because that would be too mean and it would upset AOC and the state’s lefties.
“I will absolutely stand behind the fundamental premise on why we needed bail reform in the first place,” Hochul ranted. “Others, who are trying to politicize this, and the other party don’t seem to acknowledge why there was a need for change.”
Former Philly mayor and ex-cop Frank Rizzo once joked that, “a conservative is a liberal who got mugged the night before.” These days a supporter of Black Lives Matter who had feces rubbed in their hair during their weekend outing could just as easily get the wake up call.
In 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio boasted that he had reduced the city’s prison population from 11,000 to less than 4,000.
The disgraced radical politician claimed that the result was “smaller, safer, and fairer for all.”
One out of three ain’t bad.
De Blasio announced that the city had the smallest prison population since 1946. Not only does the city have over a million more people than it did in 1946, it has a very different population due to decades when the city’s middle class fled crime enabled by his predecessors leaving behind a lot of career welfare recipients and their subsidiary junkies, muggers, and De Blasio voters.
When the De Blasio administration bragged that the number “of people entering jail fell to about 600 people, compared to 3,300”, the excess number went on mugging, assaulting, and robbing people instead of safely, fairly, and justly being locked away where they couldn’t hurt anyone.
The NYPD had over 34,000 uniformed officers who had helped dramatically lower crime rates a decade ago. Now it has over 36,000 uniformed officers and crime is killing New York City.
Police officers are the tip of the spear, but it’s just as unfair and unrealistic to expect them to make city streets safe on their own. It would be just as crazy to expect garbage men to clean up the city without letting them take out the trash. Especially if government officials passed laws putting the trash back on the street almost as soon as the garbage trucks picked it up.
A city with a small police force, but an effective justice and penal system is much safer than one with a huge police force, but no functioning justice or penal system.
A cop who is allowed to do his job is worth a thousand cops who know that when a video of them stopping a crazed junkie goes viral, elected officials will throw them under the bus and then throw the book at them. It doesn’t matter how big the police budget is when the only thing that the cops are allowed to do is show up, speak softly and then fill out a big report.
American cities still have large police forces with huge budgets.
The NYPD budget is over $5 billion, the LAPD budget is pushing $2 billion, as is the Chicago Police Department. The eye-popping police budgets are necessarily largely because politicians and cultural elites have created ongoing crises that require constant police intervention.
When there are tent cities every few blocks, junkies casually shoot up outside schools, and crazies freely assault random people before getting out a few hours later, basic public safety involves plowing billions into large forces full of men with guns to provide plausible deniability.
Funding the police makes it look like the politicians are dealing with the crisis they created.
But that’s a lie. And any cop will tell you so. Under these circumstances the police aren’t there to keep cities safe, they’re there to make the politicians look good and then take the fall for them.
Not only do we already know how to clean up cities, but we did it within the living memory of virtually every human being over 25 years old. Take the junkies and crazies off the streets, write laws so that there are real consequences for career criminals, and enforce quality of life rules.
It’s not only common sense, but it turned around some of the worst cities of America.
It worked so well that the downtowns of those cities filled up with insufferable hipsters eagerly absorbing the latest idiotic academic theory which, in the case of ‘decarceration’ did for public safety in New York City and San Francisco what Communism did for Soviet agriculture.
The pandemic sent many of those same hipsters fleeing to the suburbs and rural areas, and other states entirely, even as they continue to write and share the same smug op-eds and memes, while leaving battered cities with unlivable city centers in their wake.
Everything they say leaves our country and the public debate on any subject dumber.
Police defunding is no longer a serious issue. When even Joe Biden, who doesn’t use the bathroom without first getting permission from Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, can embrace, “Fund the Police”, you know the whole thing has become an empty distraction.
Fund the police, sure.
Add another billion to the NYPD budget, another $200 million to the LAPD and CPD budgets, but don’t expect anything to change as long as shoplifting is legal and crack is considered a health food. When gang leaders can recruit 12-year-olds to carjack suburban moms shopping at malls, and the growing population of crazies can punch as many people as they like on public transportation, funding the police becomes a distraction from the real crime crisis.
Funding the police won’t stop the nightmare in our cities. Only filling up the prisons will.