In 2014, when he was first inaugurated mayor, Bill de Blasio boasted that he’d end the “Tale of Two Cities.”
Eight years later, his Democratic successors have only deepened inequality in New York — and put blacks and Latinos in harm’s way much more than whites.
Affluent white neighborhoods remain largely safe while lower-income, mostly minority areas are seeing a tsunami in violent crime. The loss of human life under bail “reform” pushed by our left-leaning politicians isn’t just more common in black and Hispanic areas. It’s astronomically disproportionate.
Nonviolent crimes like shoplifting, robbery and other forms of lawlessness are up in 72 of the city’s 77 NYPD precincts this year compared to the same period last year, but the crimes that people most fear — murders, shootings and felonious assault — have wrought havoc on the city’s minority neighborhoods.
To see how uneven the killing ground is, as Casey Stengel liked to say, you can look it up.
Although there have been 261 murders committed citywide up until Aug. 8 this year, 37 of 77 precincts saw two or fewer homicides. Fifteen recorded no murders at all.
Meanwhile, The Bronx had 83 murders to date this year, or 32% of all city murders even though the borough has only 18% of its population. The brunt of the violence didn’t happen in the borough’s fancy Riverdale section, but in largely minority enclaves such as the 44th Precinct, which includes the Grand Concourse and Yankee Stadium. Sixteen murders to date, versus 12 last year, make it the borough’s deadliest precinct.
Bloodier still, in terms of shootings, was Brooklyn’s 75th, which covers East New York and Cypress Hills. In a neighborhood more than 90% black and Hispanic, 56 people have been shot this year and 11 killed. The adjacent 73rd, gang-ridden Ocean Hill-Brownsville, had 12 slayings. The two precincts’ combined 23 homicides comprised nearly half the total 49 killings in all of Manhattan’s 23 precincts.
In the Upper West Side’s 20th Precinct, there have been zero murders to date, the same as in 2021, and no recorded shootings compared to one in 2021. Manhattan’s 19th Precinct on the Upper East Side had just two murders so far this year. Both involved domestic disputes. There were only three shooting incidents versus two last year. The prosperous West Village, the 6th Precinct, saw two only murders.
As everyone except The New York Times knows, the surge in bloodshed for poorer, mostly minority New Yorkers coincides with the “bail reform” that was rammed through the state legislature in 2019 and took effect in 2020. Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and State Senate Majority Leader Andrew Stewart-Cousins got cover from woke-coddling governors Andrew Cuomo, who declined to veto the bill, and Kathy Hochul, who refuses to push for meaningful changes to it.
Bail “reform” was supposedly meant “to ensure all who encounter the criminal justice system are treated fairly and equally,” Heastie claims on his Web site. Its real-world effect was to let many lawbreakers go free and to strip judges of their right to consider each suspect’s potential “dangerousness” in deciding whether to impose bail — as is allowed in all 49 other states.
Alexander Wright, 49, perfectly personifies the problem. Wright is accused of pummeling a black subway cleaner in The Bronx this month just one year after randomly attacking an Asian woman in Chinatown. Although he has been arrested 42 times, he was put back on the streets again and again, and even now is being held on just $5,000 bail — half of what usually weak-willed Bronx prosecutors sought for the crime.
Why would Heastie and Stewart-Cousins enact, and continue to defend, a bail policy that is so manifestly and overwhelmingly catastrophic to neighborhoods of color?
Don’t expect an answer. They won’t even acknowledge that loosening bail rules has anything to do with it and instead blame insufficient social services, “too many guns” and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Black lives don’t matter to Democratic politicians of any color in pursuit of their own ideological agendas. Heastie and Stewart-Cousins, and Cuomo and Hochul, too, have blood on their hands for a calamity that could happen only in the one-party state of New York.