BEFORE THE APRIL RIOT, THE CINCINNATI POLICE used to practice community policing.
This two-decade-old concept introduced by UCLA professor James Q. Wilson is also known as the “Broken Windows” theory. The term comes from neighborhoods that have broken windows, abandoned buildings, dirty streets and graffiti. The theory goes that, in these types of disorganized areas, people who live there tend to act much like their surroundings. In other words, if small disorders are ignored, larger disorders such as serious crime may flourish.
Popularized in New York City under the Giuliani administration, “Broken Windows” calls for the police to arrest people for petty violations and to investigate suspicious people in high-crime areas. Theoretically, arrests made for petty violations will provide apprehensions of people who are wanted for crimes that are more serious.
This policy worked well in New York. Crime decreased because many probation and parole violators were imprisoned. Many criminals with outstanding warrants were arrested and generally, criminals were removed from the community. However, more contact between police and suspects also means more opportunities for shootings.
Leftist agitators exploited these shootings, citing racism. This culminated last April in Cincinnati with what agitators described as a “rebellion.” Activists called Cincinnati police officers murderers. They demanded investigations. They demanded prosecutions. They termed police shootings “executions.” They said that the Cincinnati police routinely engage in racist activities.
Of course, the mainstream media reported these allegations without an iota of skepticism. Neither the mayor, the governor, nor the DA, spoke up to endorse their department. Quite the opposite, the Governor went to the services of a slain suspect.
The police realized that the city government infrastructure was all too willing to purge them. A reminder of this was a new city ordinance, requiring police to complete a contact card denoting the race of drivers being investigated for traffic violations. These cards can be used as evidence of racial profiling, according to Lieutenant Kurt Byrd, of the Cincinnati Police Public Information Office.
Cognizant of the possibility of civil and criminal litigation, the police have eschewed the Broken Windows theory and now approach their duties cautiously. They still enforce the law, however, they minimize the risk. No longer do they routinely investigate petty traffic violations, suspicious vehicles, or suspicious persons. No longer do they routinely risk hastily traveling to crime scenes.
If they make an arrest, they make an arrest. If they don’t, they don’t. The primary concern is to avoid any action that the second-guessers and provocateurs could use to form a lynch mob, or to claim racism.What is the result of this new conduct? Crime rates, especially homicides of black males, have increased exponentially. Lt. Byrd said there were 18 shooting incidents from April 13 to July 12 last year. For the same period this year, there were 66 a 360-percent increase.
Now the same people who vilified the police for killing too many blacks are criticizing them for not preventing black crime. Reverend Damon Lynch, of the Black United Front (BUF), has been at the forefront of both protests.
On Monday’s Nightline, Lynch and Keith Fangman of the Cincinnati Fraternal Order of Police debated the performance of the Cincinnati police in the aftermath of the civil unrest. On the show Lynch stated, “ We’re not anti-police.”
He’s not? The Cincinnati Enquirer, which has been sympathetic to Lynch, quoted him as saying: “Cincinnati, like many cities, breeds a police culture negative toward blacks.”
Moreover, the BUF has circulated a petition stating that the United States of America is engaged in the genocide of black people. If Lynch believes this, then he quite obviously would be opposed to any government particularly the enforcement branch.
Cincinnati’s Lt. Byrd said Lynch made two misstatements during his Nightline appearance neither questioned by host Ted Koppel. First, Lynch claimed Cincinnati has a gun buyback program. There is no such program. Second, Lynch claimed the increase in shootings were the result of guns stolen from pawnshops during the looting. According to Byrd, only two pawnshops were looted and no guns were stolen from either.
Lynch is more a leftist ideologue than a community leader. He spouts the same liberal canards about law enforcement. I have always said that a leftist was a racist’s best ally. Leftists’ inability to support strict law enforcement has contributed to the leading cause of fatality among young African-American
Cincinnati has validated my claim.