Democrats are resurrecting an old issue from the 1960s – that criminals are victims. During the Days of Rage when civic unrest rose to the level of violent criminality – arson, bombings, vandalism and even murder – and non-political crime rates soared, the liberal Democrat community saw political criminals as mere protestors and common criminals as the victims of society. The pendulum between punishment and rehabilitation swung too far to the latter.
This resulted in a rise in crime and the eventual backlash of the 1990s when even Democrats – including President Clinton and Hillary – supported so-called criminal reform that shoved the pendulum to the punishment extreme. And now we have the backlash to the backlash.
There is legitimate concern over excessive imprisonment. Something is very wrong when the freest of nations is among the world’s leading incarcerator of its citizens. This trend of excessive criminalization may be a byproduct of a nation with lawyers (prosecutors) as the ruling class, but that is an issue for another time.
But even in periods of crack-down, Democrats generally have been the more lenient. Today, they are downright advocates of crime without consequences. In a sense, they are playing to their base. Virtually every poll and study show that criminals tend to be overwhelmingly Democrats. Explain it as you might, that is just a fact.
It certainly applies to Democrats willingness to allow millions of people to enter America and remain here illegally and to even overlook secondary crimes, such as identity theft. Rather than justice, they offer sanctuary. Democrats also oppose using the census to ask if a person is a citizen. Their rationale is that illegal aliens will not respond and will not be counted. Democrats, however, want to empower illegal residents to be counted for federal grants and even configuring congressional districts. They want to add illegals to give Democrats greater representation – essentially reducing the power of citizens – and drawing more money from Uncle Sam for mostly Democrat-controlled urban centers.
Democrat leniency also applies to the lack of enforcement during “demonstrations” and “protests” in which Democrat-controlled urban communities are torched, property vandalized, stores looted and innocent people beaten or killed. But immigration policy – or lack thereof – and street riots are not the only area where the Democratic Party and common criminals find common ground.
That is why you see Democrats now proffering policies that would restore voting rights to convicted felons after they return to society. That is why Jesse Jackson long ago proposed voting rights for those still in prison – a proposal that socialist Bernie Sanders has made a plank in his presidential platform. It would give terrorists, rapists, mass murderers and the entire panoply of sociopaths the opportunity to vote for governors, senators, presidents and even sheriffs and prosecutors.
In my hometown of Chicago, street gangs were part of the Democrats inner-city precinct and ward organizations – operating more like enforcers than traditional precinct committeemen.
Sanders believes that criminal behavior and imprisonment should not result in the taking away of voting rights. This is just another of Sanders’ nutty ideas – and one that has been rejected even by most of his colleague presidential candidates. Part of the punishment of going to prison is the denial or curtailment of certain constitutional rights – such as freedom of speech, freedom of access to public places, freedom to take a job, and on and on. The ability to select public officials from prison should be the first right suspended in a sane society. Sanders’ proposal is not humanitarian or respectful of the Constitution. It is a blatant attempt to increase the Democrat vote.
John Creuzot, the Dallas County, Texas Prosecutor is one-upping Sanders. He has decided to not prosecute what he unilaterally determines to be low-level offenders – shoplifters, pickpockets, muggers and other individuals committing crimes – thefts of less than $750, for example. Yep! Creuzot has decided that they can go scot-free. Police can arrest who they please, but Creuzot will not prosecute them. (Sounds like an official version of what happened to Jussie Smollett in Chicago.)
By way of explanation, Creuzot says that these criminals are just folks trying to survive – you know stealing a loaf of bread to feed the children. He sees many of these as “crimes of necessity.” If you were not aware of that as a defense, you are not alone. Creuzot’s Dickensonian view is absurd.
Even most low-level crimes are committed for greed — not poverty – and often by repeat offenders. In fact, the first offender given a pass under the new policy in Dallas was a guy with a record of 27 arrests and 18 convictions.
The very idea that self-perceived “necessity” is a legitimate excuse for criminal behavior runs contrary to logic and equal justice – and maligns a lot of good poor people. I am sure Al Capone found it personally necessary to knock off a few competitors.
And what about justice for the victims? What happens when some guy puts a $500 watch in his pocket – or, in the name of political correctness, some woman slips a $700 necklace into her purse – and walks out of the store? According to the Dallas prosecutor, they simply walk away – maybe not even returning the goods.
Can a mom and pop grocery store survive if just anyone can pick off $749 worth of merchandise every day? And even that is assuming – wrongly – that they are stealing to feed those poor kids. How about stealing some of those electronic devices to sell for drug money?
Seems that the logical outcome of this policy would be to create a rash of low-level crimes. Every day is Christmas for the shoplifter and mugger. They can ply their criminal business without fear of consequences or punishment in Dallas.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott and the various police unions – who are commissioned to arrest ALL crooks – are more than a bit perturbed with Creuzot – and some have called for his resignation.
The issue in Dallas also raises a point I have made in other commentaries – that we should not put too much belief in the so-called rule-of-law and that no person is above the law. Those claims are discredited by way of too many exceptions – and Creuzot is about to make it official for a broad range of criminals in Texas.
By empowering criminals and illegals – and giving them quasi-citizenship rights — Democrats are hoping to strength their political power. The Democrat prosecutor in Dallas can keep them eligible to vote – and maybe that is what it is really about. But it seems clear that Democrats sure ain’t about public safety and the rule-of-law.
So, there ‘tis.