Burlington, Vermont cut its police force by 30 percent, back when ‘defunding the police’ was cool. Now Democrats are admitting the cut did a lot of damage. Officers left in droves because of the hostility. Overtime costs soared. Only five officers patrol at night. A crime-fighting team was disbanded. Emergency call response times got longer. Burglary and vehicle thefts are up. But not to worry, City Hall hired its own private security firm for their own safety. But like other places, Burlington had to confess error and reverse course. In October, the City Council voted to raise the number of officers and to offer bonuses to keep any more from quitting.
Burlington’s police chief called the whole ‘defund the police’ movement “a grand experiment on a national and local level that’s gone awry.” You got that right. But defunding the police is not the only way the magical thinking mush-for-brains Left has messed up criminal justice in recent months.
Take zero bail, for example. Crime is up in Democrat cities that enacted bail reform, including New York City. One reason is that repeat offenders who are let out go on to commit more crimes. Duh! How many repeat offenses would it take for you to think there might be a problem here – three? five? California’s no-bail policy resulted in a car-theft suspect being re-arrested 13 times in 12 weeks. Zero bail – another crazy left-wing idea. Police in Los Angeles arrested 14 suspects in smash-and-grab robberies last month, but they were all released from jail because of the Democrats’ low-or-no-bail policies. Just the facts, ma’am.
If stolen watches don’t matter to you, maybe murder will get your attention. Twelve U.S. cities, all run by Democrats, broke homicide records this year. Philadelphia had more than 500 murders. Critics are pointing to the defund the police movement as the cause. It only took Philadelphia a year and a half to go from cutting its police budget by $33 million to the most murders on record since 1990. The spike in homicides in Chicago is attributable to a lack of support for the police and to left-wing prosecutors who coddle violent offenders out of some misguided notion they are downtrodden and oppressed. Chicago is where gangs can shoot up entire neighborhoods and get released without charges.
Left-wing Democrats would rather chase unicorns and rainbows than criminals. It’s gotten so bad in L.A., the head of the police union is warning tourists to stay away because the police cannot guarantee their safety. In San Francisco, residents call the police to deal with stolen packages, break-ins, open drug use and other problems created by the homeless – but the police won’t come.
But Leftists are either in denial or actually trying to gaslight you. Take left-wing District Attorney Larry Krasner in Philadelphia where homicides passed 500 this year. Krasner said recently, “We don’t have a crisis of lawlessness, we don’t have a crisis of crime, we don’t have a crisis of violence.” In response, former Mayor Michael Nutter who is black said, “I have to wonder what kind of messed up world of white wokeness Krasner is living in to have so little regard for human lives lost, many of them Black and brown, while he advances his own national profile as a progressive district attorney.” Amen.
A “messed up world of white wokeness.” Had enough of these left-wing crazies, yet?