Videos on TV and the internet show a trend of white left-wing activists shouting at black law enforcement officers. They call them “traitors,” “sellouts,” and “Uncle Tom.” “You should know better,” said a white activist in the face of a black cop last week.
It is just the latest in a disgusting attack on the police — a movement few Americans could have imagined just two months ago.
Anti-American leftists, under the guise of defending minorities, want local politicians to defund police and even close departments. More rational voices are calling for reasonable reforms to ensure better outcomes. (See today’s “Perspective” features).
Incredibly, elected officials are capitulating to those clamoring for no cops. The Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously last week to eliminate the police department in a city nearly the size of Colorado Springs, which serves as the hub for a metropolitan area of 3.6 million residents. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio cut $1 billion from the city’s police budget.
Without traditional law enforcement, we will have lawlessness. It’s the biggest no-brainer in the world. A society without the structure provided by law enforcement is one in which powerful predators victimize the weak.
Without law enforcement, we see vigilante justice. Prominent St. Louis attorney Mark McCloskey and his wife, Patricia, protected their home with a rifle and handgun last week because protesters broke down a gate and marched toward them. The couple knew their city’s embattled police force had effectively given up on the protests, allowing massive property destruction and death. They were frightened and took safety into their hands. That’s how this goes.
Federal crime data tell us poor Americans, a demographic made up disproportionately of minorities, suffer far more crime than Americans who are middle class or wealthy. The economically disadvantaged are less likely to have weapons and other means to protect themselves. They need the very law enforcement agencies these activists hope to defund and close, supposedly to save Black lives.
African Americans are 78% more likely than whites to experience household burglaries; 133% more likely to experience motor vehicle theft. Hispanics are 46% more likely than non-Hispanics to be victims of property crimes.
Based on a report by The Sentencing Project, Black Americans suffer serious violent crime at much higher rates than whites and Hispanics. The report says Blacks are 66% more likely than whites to be victims of sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, and simple assault. Hispanics are 37% more likely than whites to suffer these crimes.
The Sentencing Project found homicide is the most common cause of death for African American men ages 15 to 34.
“Racial minorities’ greater rates of victimization are tied to their heightened fears about crime...” The Sentencing Project reports. “When asked, ‘Is there any area right around here — that is, within a mile — where you would be afraid to walk alone at night?’ nonwhites have more often said yes than whites.”
Regardless of anything protesters might think, minorities are ordinary people who value their families, businesses and homes. They need a response when dialing 911.
Because the mostly white protests are staged in minority neighborhoods, the violence has killed dozens of minorities. Two black teenagers were shot in Seattle’s lawless cop-free “Chop” zone last week. Protesters have burned and looted minority-owned businesses, ruining the lives of families with children.
Upgrades of police procedures and practices are a good idea. We pay law enforcement to protect and serve without prejudice. When things go wrong, we need answers and solutions.
We cannot eliminate or financially suffocate law enforcement in a society based on the rule of law and not the might of men.
The murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis cops leaves a permanent scar on our country. It highlights the need for more and better law and order, not more violence and crime.
George Floyd was Black. His death reminds us of the suffering too many minorities have endured on this land since before our country was founded. It reminds us of how much work we need to do. We cannot allow this to make things worse for minority communities. They, more than white protesters fresh from the university, need good cops to protect their families, properties and lives.
The Gazette Editorial Board