In a few years, once we’ve gotten some distance from the disastrous Obama presidency, it will be interesting to see which aspects of his tenure had the most damaging long-term impact. His weakness on terrorism? His signature health insurance legislation? His nuclear deal with Iran? His efforts to welcome illegal immigrants? Any of those things are potential contenders, but soaring crime rates may turn out to be Obama’s true legacy. When this man came into office, American crime was in the middle of a 20-year downturn. But due to his administration’s take on racial justice, those numbers are on the rise again.
It’s not just Obama, mind you. This is a movement that has infected the whole of the Democratic Party. In the wake of Ferguson, Trayvon Martin, and all the other sensationalized cases, our politicians have decided that it’s time to roll back the strict law enforcement policies and stiff penalties that brought crime rates down to begin with. In New York City and elsewhere, city officials are falling all over themselves in an attempt to decriminalize anything short of murder. And according to a new letter from Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s office, other municipalities are being strongly encouraged to follow their example.
First reported by the New York Post, Lynch’s letter warns judges at every level of the judicial system that their courts could lose federal funds if they continue to fine and arrest indigent minorities for minor crimes:
In lieu of fines and jail time, Lynch urges the nation’s 6,500 municipal courts to provide an avenue for offenders to perform “community service” or take advantage of “amnesty days,” whereby outstanding arrest warrants are cleared for nominal fees.
Failure to comply with these policies could trigger a Ferguson-style discrimination investigation. Already, Lynch says she’s “evaluating discrimination complaints against several court systems.”
Lynch’s argument is the same one we’ve been hearing from the social-justice warriors on the left for years. Because minorities are being arrested and fined at disproportionately higher rates than whites, the numbers themselves are evidence of a hopelessly racist system. Rather than delve into the factors that might explain why minorities are breaking the law more often, these leftists want to solve the problem from the other side of the equation. Too many arrests? Well…stop arresting people! What could go wrong?
It’s bad enough that Democrats won’t take responsibility for the immoral, intellectually-bankrupt policies that keep minorities mired in poverty and susceptible to a criminal lifestyle, but now they want to exacerbate the problem by dismantling the rule of law. If there’s a logical reason to believe that this will turn out well, we’d love to hear it.