The political landscape of America has been fraught with tension and division, but one issue that has transcended party lines and united citizens across the nation is the growing concern over crime. The recent announcement by President Joe Biden that he will take a firm stance against crime has come as a small glimmer of hope to Republicans, and even many Democrats, who have been calling for action to address this pressing issue.
Biden is typically seen as beholden to the far left, yet he has taken a step in the right direction by announcing his intention to sign a bill that would override the DC Council’s override of the DC mayor, who originally vetoed a bill that would allow lighter. sentences for those who commit petty crimes.
While I applaud Biden for this move, my heart remains heavy with concern for the delay in taking such action. How many innocent individuals had to suffer the heinous consequences of criminals running rampant before he realized the dire need to tackle the surging crime rates head-on? The notion of doling out lighter sentences to those who commit crimes — an implicit incentive to engage in more criminal acts — must be cast aside. We cannot afford to release hardened criminals back onto the streets, perpetuating an environment in which crime becomes a lucrative and risk-free business.
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For far too long, we’ve witnessed the devastating impact of petty crimes on our cities and communities. It’s not just murder or arson that wreaks havoc on our society; it’s the persistent and insidious nature of petty crimes that leave ordinary citizens feeling unsafe, disillusioned and, quite frankly, annoyed. Criminals who engage in theft, burglary and other such offenses are emboldened by the lack of consequences and the ease with which they can commit these acts. With minimal penalties, these crimes become an attractive and profitable enterprise, incentivizing criminals to continue their illegal activities. It’s only when we start to take a tough stance on such crimes that we can start to see a positive change. We must recognize that the well-being of our cities and communities is inextricably linked to how we treat criminal actions.
The reason behind Biden’s decision to act could not be clearer, and the timing could not be more apt. It all started with the stunning defeat of soon-to-be former Mayor of Chicago Lori Lightfoot in the most recent mayoral election — a loss that left her in third place with a measly 17% of the vote, breaking a 40-year streak of incumbents winning reelection. This blow sent ripples throughout liberal circles, with Lightfoot hastily pointing fingers at racism for her loss, all while overlooking the glaring reality that she had been elected as a black woman in the first place. The real culprit? Rampant crime, of course, which had left the city’s streets unsafe for even the briefest of walks, as residents feared becoming victims of robbery, assault, or even worse, murder.
This all-too-familiar narrative has plagued liberal-run cities, where criminals are incentivized to escalate their nefarious activities and are shielded from the consequences by far-left city council members, mayors and district attorneys who continue to enact laws that lighten sentences and decriminalize certain offenses. As citizens remain disarmed in the face of soaring crime rates, criminals grow ever more audacious, secure in the knowledge that the authorities are unwilling or unable to prosecute them.
It’s high time we abandoned the notion of extending sympathy to criminals. Of course, many find themselves in dire straits, struggling to provide for themselves or their families. I understand that, and I empathize with their situation. However, feeling compassion for their plight and wanting to hold them accountable for their crimes are not mutually exclusive. We can acknowledge the existence of individuals in dire circumstances while also recognizing that no one should have to endure victimization simply because of someone else’s predicament. We can also recognize that not all people in dire circumstances commit crimes. Instead of lightening sentences and turning a blind eye to criminal behavior, we should focus on providing better resources to support those in need, encouraging them to turn their lives around and steer clear of crime.
Sadly, where one obstacle falls, another may rise. Now that Biden has taken a stand against crime, it’s likely that liberals will push him further to the left on other radical ideals, hoping to use their power to threaten his political aspirations. We may see movements like transgenderism gain further momentum, emboldened by the Biden’s endorsement, as a compromise to the left.
While I sincerely hope that this is not the case, it remains a likely outcome, given the fact that Biden has had to compromise on such a significant issue. Only time will tell, but for now, let’s take heart in the progress we’ve made and the prospect of a safer, more secure future for our cities.
Armstrong Williams is a political commentator, author, entrepreneur and founder of Howard Strik Holdings, which creates diverse content relative to politics, entertainment and topics of social and cultural relevance. The opinions are the writer’s.
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