On the mournful anniversary of the blatant murder of George Floyd, an inconvenient truth confronts American politics: Violent crime has shot up dramatically in cities over the past year, amid the pandemic, yes, but also amid a wave of policing protests and radical reforms.
Luckily, after a year where the number of shooting victims in New York City doubled, there is a leader who supports commonsense criminal justice reform and yet has a record of speaking plainly about “predators on our streets” and the need to remove them while also dealing with root causes: “It doesn’t matter whether or not they’re the victims of society. The end result is they’re about to knock my mother on the head with a lead pipe, shoot my sister, beat up my wife, take on my sons.”
Or, rather, there was a leader who knew how to talk about getting violent crime under control. To confront what threatens to be an emerging crime epidemic, the kinder, gentler Joe Biden of 2021 might want to recall and channel some of the Joe Biden of 1993, who understood the personal real-world danger of out-of-control crime and the political danger of being tagged as a “soft-on-crime” Democrat.