Andrew Cuomo gave his favorite punching-bag another heavy workout, rapidly taking Mayor Bill de Blasio to task for anti-police graffiti demolishing public buildings in Lower Manhattan.
Too bad he had nothing more to say about the anti-police politicians who were bringing the New York public square into disrepute. Or bullet-casings littering the city streets someday. There is a connection between the two, you know.
“I am telling the Mayor: It is important to clean the city. Now there is a lot of negativity in the air. Positive progress, go ahead, ”Cuomo ordered during a Manhattan press conference on Thursday.
It was another looking glass moment for New York, New York – where the shooting takes place, the road to arrest is closed and the poles all live with their heads in the ground.
It’s no secret that gun crime has exploded in New York – that the city was suffering through its bloodiest June in 25 years, that a 1-year-old was murdered on July 13 at a barbecue in Brooklyn and when That Gotham isn’t quite Chicago, Baltimore or Philly, the trend line is terrible.
But still it is, which is not getting nearly enough attention: between mid-June and mid-July – a period when the city was arrested by shootings, an increase in double-digit crime, and violent civil disorder – arrests occurred. It was 62 per cent eye-popping compared to 2019.
In particular, gun arrests were 67 percent lower overall. Typically this indicates fewer guns on the road, but the Municipal Corporation’s contingency count clearly indicates that something else is going on.
Perhaps it is that the police – not the dummies, recognize them – recognize the strong emergence of a political movement dedicated solely to insulating criminals from the consequences of their crimes. And that they are hesitant to fall prey to it.
It absolutely caught the attention of both Cuomo and the city’s Let’s-Present Mayor. It was also predictable like the sunrise.
Albany’s any neem-loose bail “bottlenecks” and hurdles for proper lawsuits imposed on district attorneys last year would have hit the ball.
The official enthusiasm for the #DefundThePolice movement – including Cuomo’s overlapping executive order imposing structural changes on the state police – did not help.
And then the City Council actually criminalized the proper, tried-and-true arrest protocol for opposing suspects – legislation that Smilein’s Bill de Blasio staged a roadshow for the Bronx to sign.
The bill has horrified law enforcement professionals everywhere – Westchester County and state police, for example, have warned their officers not to engage with criminal suspects in the city. The Westchester Cops cross the city regularly, and Cuomo deploys scores of troops to Manhattan – so that’s a big deal.
And while the shocking drop in NYPD arrests began weeks ago, it is equally true that the bill guarantees fewer arrests in the future. This is fine if your goal is to effectively help criminals escape from prison, but perhaps not so hot if your child is just hit by a stray bullet at the family cook.
As a cop for myself, it’s all about the options:
- They can risk a criminal trial for a wrongful verdict during an incandescent road collision or for a wrong knee or elbow, while confronting a violently suspect.
- Or they can sit in their patrol cars and look the other way, which is pretty certain that the problem will just go away.
Put yourself in that patrol car. Make that decision – knowing well that the problem won’t really go away, it will simply move down the block a bit.
But this will not be your problem. Makes a big difference, right?
None of it is an unknown area. John Lindsay, arguably the worst city mayor of the 20th century, established low-impact policing in the late ’60s, which turned into a crime explosion that involved a generation.
De Blasio, a heavy morning-line favorite for the worst of the current century, is followed by the suit. This is the message with a dramatic drop in shooting figures and in arrests.
But when not foreseen forever, Cuomo cannot reliably request ignorance. And no de Blasio Knight was too young for the governor for the last seven years, so it is not as if he is anything outrageous.
No, a failure to speak clearly here would be an excess of cowardice. Graffiti cleanup is important, but life matters more – and Andrew Cuomo needs to say so.
Twitter: @ rlmac2