The two big public policies under attack by the left this week are “stop-and-frisk” policing and voter ID laws. Democrats denounce both policies as racist. I’m beginning to suspect they’re getting lazy in their arguments.
Stop-and-frisk was a crucial part of the package of law enforcement measures implemented by New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani that saved the city. Under David Dinkins, who preceded Giuliani, murders averaged about 2,000 a year. There were 714 murders in New York the year Giuliani left office. Continuing Giuliani’s policing techniques, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s New York had only 419 murders last year.
Just during his first year in office, Giuliani’s policies cut the murder rate an astonishing 20 percent. That first year of his administration was responsible for 35 percent of the crime drop nationwide from 1993 to 1995. (The New York Times hailed this remarkable achievement with an article headlined, “New York City Crime Falls but Just Why Is a Mystery.”)
It was mostly black lives that were saved by Giuliani’s crime policies. By the end of his administration, the Rev. Calvin Butts, liberal pastor of Harlem’s Abyssinian Baptist Church, was comparing Giuliani to King Josiah of the Bible, who “brought order, peace, the law back to the land.” The black minister told The New York Times, “I really think that without Giuliani, we would have been overrun.”
About the same time as the Rev. Butts was comparing Giuliani to King Josiah, Richard Goldstein of The Village Voice claimed he felt less safe in New York under Giuliani. It was the ravings of a madman, like saying winter is warmer than summer. But now, Goldstein’s ideas are being delivered from the federal bench by Judge Shira Scheindlin, who recently held New York City’s stop-and-frisk policies unconstitutional.
Yes, Democrat Bob Filner can pat down his female employees, but cops can’t pat down suspected criminals.
Liberals wail about guns, but how do they imagine police get guns off the street without going to high-crime neighborhoods and stopping young men acting suspiciously? Giuliani’s policing policies, including stop-and-frisk, reduced gun homicides in New York by 75 percent within five years.
It is precisely the fear of being caught with a gun that induces young hoodlums not to carry them. The word gets out: Don’t carry a gun! It’s not worth the risk.
Of course cops don’t find many guns anymore! That’s because they’re doing stop-and-frisk.
By liberals’ logic, the government should stop doing meat inspections because it turns up so few cases of contamination these days, anyway. We can also drop the metal detectors at airports. How many people does the TSA actually catch trying to sneak guns onto airplanes?
Have liberals polled the elderly black residents of high-crime neighborhoods on stop-and-frisk? As soon as the word gets out that it’s now safe to carry weapons, spray paint, drugs and stolen goods again, criminals will rule the streets and the elderly will, once more, be confined to their homes. As Martin Luther King said, crime is “the nightmare of the slum family.”
But liberals don’t care about the innocent black victims of crime. They don’t care about citizens being prisoners in their own homes — as long as it’s not in their neighborhoods. The important thing is to self-righteously preen about racism.
When a policy that has saved thousands of black lives is attacked as “racist,” the word has no meaning. At this rate, liberals will be claiming that peanut butter sandwiches are racist — except that wouldn’t be as crazy.
Voter ID laws don’t actually save black lives the way stop-and-frisk policies do, but it’s not clear how such laws hurt them. I suppose the argument is that by allowing Democrats to steal elections, they can pass all those laws that improve black lives immeasurably, like promoting trial lawyers, gay marriage, abortion and amnesty for illegals. You know, the Democratic policies that really enhance black lives.
The claim that modern voter ID laws are a racist Republican plot to prevent minorities from voting is complicated by the fact that, in 2011, such a law was enacted by the overwhelmingly Democratic Rhode Island legislature and, in fact, was pushed through by black Democrats.
Despite the pleas of national Democrats who realized their cover was being blown, the state senate’s only black member, Democrat Harold Metts, sponsored a voted ID bill. He said he’d heard complaints about voter fraud for years, telling the story of one poll worker who encountered a voter who couldn’t spell his own last name.
A black legislator in the House, Anastasia Williams, complained that when she showed up to vote in 2006, she was told she had already voted. Another time, she saw a Hispanic man vote, go to the parking lot and change his clothes, then go back in and vote again.
If white liberals are so concerned about black votes counting, why don’t they ever vote for black representatives in their own congressional districts? Black Republicans are always elected from majority white districts: Gary Franks, J.C. Watts, Tim Scott and Allen West.
But black Democrats apparently can get elected to Congress only from specially designated minority districts. How come white liberals won’t vote for a black representative? Can’t a black person represent Nita Lowey’s district?
Democrats do nothing for black Americans except mine them for votes, which they do by telling tall tales about racist Republicans.
Ann Coulter is legal affairs
correspondent for Human Events.