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Panicked Democrats switch from 'defund' to 'refund' the police

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 8/26/2021 Washington Examiner
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It was short, and it wasn’t sweet.

The Democratic Party’s quest to defund police forces, an act in which it kowtowed to its hard-left-wing base, has come to a very bitter end. The resulting surge in violent crime has produced a massive public backlash that threatens the careers of elected Democrats throughout the nation. Naturally, the endangered species is trying to distance itself swiftly from the wreckage that “defund the police” has left behind.

The mayors of Portland and Seattle, who respectively slashed police funding by $15 million and $7.5 million last year, are now moving to restore those budgets amid spikes in violent crime made worse because police officers are choosing to retire rather than stay where their work is scorned by their employers.

Something similar is happening in Chicago, where last year, Mayor Lori Lightfoot demanded that the police force leave vacant positions unfilled as part of a broader drive to cut police budgets. Lightfoot now faces a 60% increase in murders since 2019, and suddenly, she sees the light — the police are not expendable, and the thin blue line between chaos and order cannot be allowed to get any thinner.

She says she wants “to recruit the next generation of officers.” Good luck with that. All over the country, police forces are dwindling because officers are quitting their thankless jobs in cities run by leftists. We're deeply sympathetic to the city communities betrayed by their political leaders, but it's hard not to take a certain pleasure in the backlash now engulfing the political charlatans who perpetrated this disaster.

Police reform has been and remains an important issue, but the Left has tried to demonize the brave officers and rejected the very existence of law enforcement itself, attributing racist motives to even basic measures to suppress crime. Compounding the problem is a gaggle of irresponsible leftist prosecutors who have taken office in communities such as Philadelphia and San Francisco. In the name of racial justice, they refuse to prosecute brazen crimes and care not at all for the mostly nonwhite citizens whom these predators victimize.

According to the FBI, the number of black murder victims rose by an astounding 23% from 2014 through 2019 — more than three times as fast as the rise in white victims. Not only does this mean that blacks now comprise 54% of all murder victims, but it also means that nearly twice as many black people are being murdered every single year as were lynched in the entire history of the Jim Crow South, according to a detailed 2015 report on that grim chapter of U.S. history.

In other words, today’s Democratic defund agenda inflicted more death in minority communities than back when the leaders of the same party were hiding behind white masks and burning crosses.

Decent people want the police to treat everyone fairly, regardless of race. Equal justice under the law is the American way. As recently as 2014, all political parties seemed to be on the same page with that idea. To that end, both conservatives and liberals have advocated laudable reforms to police procedures that would maximize transparency and the rule of law while minimizing occasions for abuse or brutality.

But no one is benefiting from Democrats’ push to defund the police. Is it any wonder that they are now slinking away from the scene of their own crime, trying to pretend they never even supported such a thing?

 

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Tags: Editorials, Lori Lightfoot, Joe Biden, Democratic Party, Democrats, Crime, Gun Violence, Portland, Seattle, Chicago

Original Author: Washington Examiner

Original Location: Panicked Democrats switch from 'defund' to 'refund' the police

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