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Heather Mac Donald: Trump Can End the War on Cops

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The Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald writes: Stop treating police as racist and pushing lower hiring standards as a way to achieve ‘diversity.’

Heather Mac Donald writes: Donald Trump’s promise to restore law and order to America’s cities was one of the most powerful themes of his presidential campaign. His capacity to deliver will depend on changing destructive presidential rhetoric about law enforcement and replacing the federal policies that flowed from that rhetoric.

“Mr. Obama’s Justice Department has imposed an unprecedented number of federal consent decrees on police agencies, subjecting those agencies to years of costly federal monitoring, based on a specious methodology for teasing out alleged systemic police bias.”

The rising violence in many urban areas is driven by what candidate Trump called a “false narrative” about policing. This narrative holds that law enforcement is pervaded by racism, and that we are experiencing an epidemic of racially biased police shootings of black men.

SEAFORD, NY - MAY 08: The hearse carrying the casket for fallen New York City police officer Brian Moore leaves a Long Island church on May 8, 2015 in Seaford, New York. Officer Moore died last Monday after being shot in the head while on duty two days earlier in Queens. The 25-year-old officer and his partner stopped a man suspected of carrying a handgun when the man opened fire on them. As many as 30,000 police officers from across the United States payed their respects at the Long Island funeral. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

SEAFORD, NY: The hearse carrying the casket for fallen New York City police officer Brian Moore leaves a Long Island church on May 8, 2015 in Seaford, New York. Officer Moore died last Monday after being shot in the head while on duty two days earlier in Queens. The 25-year-old officer and his partner stopped a man suspected of carrying a handgun when the man opened fire on them. As many as 30,000 police officers from across the United States payed their respects at the Long Island funeral. (Photo – Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Multiple studies have shown that those claims are untrue. If there is a bias in police shootings, it works in favor of blacks and against whites. Yet President Obama has repeatedly accused the police and criminal-justice system of discrimination, lethal and otherwise. During the memorial service for five Dallas police officers gunned down in July by an assassin who reportedly was inspired by Black Lives Matter, Mr. Obama announced 41rc4fb5lil-_sl250_that black parents were right to “fear that something terrible may happen when their child walks out the door”—that the child will be fatally shot by a cop.

[Order Heather Mac Donald’s book “The War on Cops: How the New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe” from Amazon.com]

The consequences of such presidential rhetoric are enormous, especially when amplified by the media. Officers working in high-crime areas now encounter a dangerous level of hatred and violent resistance. Gun murders of officers are up 68% this year compared with the same period last year.

“The department assumes that police activity like stops or arrests will be evenly spread across different racial and ethnic populations unless there is police racism. So if police stops are higher among blacks, say, the police, according to this reasoning, must be motivated by bias.”

Police have cut way back on pedestrian stops and public-order enforcement in minority neighborhoods, having been told repeatedly that such discretionary activities are racially oppressive. The result in 2015 was the largest national homicide increase in nearly 50 years. That shooting spree has continued this year, ruthlessly mowing down children and senior citizens in many cities, along with the usual toll of young black men who are the primary targets of gun crime.

[Read the full story here, at WSJ]

To begin to reverse these trends, President Trump must declare that the executive branch’s ideological war on cops is over. The most fundamental necessity of any society is adherence to the rule of law, he should say. Moreover, there is no government agency today more dedicated to the proposition that black lives matter than the police.

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“But this analysis ignores the large racial differences in offending and victimization rates. Policing today is data-driven: Cops go where innocent civilians are most being preyed upon—and that is in minority neighborhoods. Under a Trump administration, police activity should be evaluated against a benchmark of crime, not population ratios.”

The nationwide policing revolution that originated in New York City in 1994—based on proactive enforcement—saved thousands of minority lives over 20 years, and provided urban residents with newfound freedom. While police agencies and their local overseers must remain vigilant against officer abuses, the federal government will no longer deem cops racist for responding to community demands for public order.

Mr. Obama’s Justice Department has imposed an unprecedented number of federal consent decrees on police agencies, subjecting those agencies to years of costly federal monitoring, based on a specious methodology for teasing out alleged systemic police bias. The department assumes that police activity like stops or arrests will be evenly spread across different racial and ethnic populations unless there is police racism. So if police stops are higher among blacks, say, the police, according to this reasoning, must be motivated by bias.

But this analysis ignores the large racial differences in offending and victimization rates. Policing today is data-driven: Cops go where innocent civilians are most being preyed upon—and that is in minority neighborhoods. Under a Trump administration, police activity should be evaluated against a benchmark of crime, not population ratios.

The next administration should continue the new FBI initiative to collect and publish data on all officer use of force. But such information must be accompanied by…(read more)

Source: WSJ

Ms. Mac Donald is a fellow at the Manhattan Institute and the author of “The War on Cops,” (Encounter Books, 2016).

 

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One Comment on “Heather Mac Donald: Trump Can End the War on Cops”

  1. […] via Heather Mac Donald: Trump Can End the War on Cops — pundit from another planet […]


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