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Jerry McConnell / June 4, 2015

Guess Who Pays When Rioting Thugs Destroy Our Cities?

Possessing an incredible amount of perspicacity, Thomas Sowell is always a “Best Bet” to come up with logic by the tons when confronted with a sticky situation. Defining the effects of the recent marauding of American cities couldn’t be analyzed and dissected by anyone any better than the good Doctor of Economics Thomas Sowell.

In his June 2, 2015, column “Paying the Price,” he covers the question in the above headline in magna cum laude fashion by stating on the Baltimore riots, that that city, meaning its residents, “is now paying the price for irresponsible words and actions, not only by young thugs in the streets, but also by its mayor and the state prosecutor, both of whom threw the police to the wolves, in order to curry favor with local voters.”

Naturally the physical damage to properties was generally the result of the rioters who had larceny in their hearts and craze in their minds. But the unbelievably poor judgment in the use of words during a crisis heightened time such as that, immeasurably worsened the after-effects.

It may not be totally sourced with the rioters but it is highly conceivable that as Sowell says, “murders in Baltimore in May have been more than double what they were in May last year, and higher than in any May in the past 15 years.” So in the face of the hard evidence, Sowell can’t be faulted for his statement on murders. And another factor that can’t be overlooked is, again as Sowell states, “Meanwhile, the number of arrests is down by more than 50 percent.”

It only seems natural that when high state government officials such as the city’s Mayor and the State Prosecutor, to paraphrase Sowell, threw the police ‘under the bus of blame’ some of the ‘care’ that police have for their fellow citizens has to be dampened somewhat. It is terribly discouraging to get chastised for doing one’s duties.

Sowell goes on to say that there are other communities across the country seeing similar crimes and police who have reduced arrests, but this is a very likely result when out-of-control mobs storm their cities chanting anti-police slogans, while the print and viewing media do little to correctly identify the thugs most responsible, allowing police criticism equal opportunities.

I think that probably there will be more information on the ‘slow-down’ or lack of effort coming from police activities in other states where rioting or organized opposition to law enforcement efforts have also been happening; in places like Ohio, Missouri, California, New York, Wisconsin and South Carolina. At some point there will have to be an acknowledgment from the citizenry that police activities must be supported for the overall good and if lacking, general mayhem may reign. We must support our local police when criminals take to the streets. Politicians must mend their ways and stand with the people.

TV and news reporters’ cameras capturing shots of police in pursuit of perpetrators or physically deterring thugs forcibly are looked on as “big game for the next edition.” But such material is often viewed wrongly by the public as it puts the police to a disadvantage and seemingly brutal. It appears at times that the picture-takers are happy to join the government officials in throwing the police under the bus.

Sowell states, “None of this should be surprising. In her carefully researched 2010 book, "Are Cops Racist?” Heather Mac Donald pointed out that, after anti-police campaigns, cops tended to do less policing and criminals tended to commit more crimes.“

In my opinion I consider Ms. Mac Donald to be an agitator using language that exacerbates more police hatred from the public and the rioters in particular. Her words also give more credence to the criticism doled out by the government officials.

Again Sowell writes, "Critics who accuse the mayor of Baltimore and the Maryland prosecutor of incompetence, for their irresponsible words and actions, are ignoring the possibility that these two elected officials are protecting and promoting their own chances of remaining in office or of moving on up to higher offices.”

Politicians live by the mantra ‘Do or say anything for the votes.’ The police certainly are not going to rebel against the politicians; a sure way to lose one’s job; so they’re fair game for the pols’ chastisements, in deference to the rioters.

Here again Sowell demonstrates his acumen stating, “Of course, all these benefits have costs. There is no free lunch. But the costs are paid by others, including men, women and children who are paying with their lives in ghettos around the country, as politicians think of ever more ways they can restrict or scapegoat the police.

"The Obama administration’s Department of Justice has been leading the charge, when it comes to presuming the police to be guilty — not only until proven innocent, but even after grand juries have gone over all the facts and acquitted the police.

"The Department of Justice has threatened various local police departments with lawsuits unless they adopt the federal government’s ideas about how police work should be done.”

There again is an example of government officialdom creating a critically dangerous situation prompting hoods and thugs to get out and riot (and loot and steal). No wonder our police are silently saying with their inactions — “Why should I risk my life when I will only be censured by the officials?”

Now you know the answer to the question in the headline above; it’s you, the taxpayers.

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