In recent weeks, half of my attention has been focused on enjoying the Christmas season, and the other half has been taken up by my increasing bewilderment at the way our leftist fellow-citizens seem to have so badly misunderstood one of the fundamental aspects of human nature: criminality.
Sure, we have lately been distracted by how badly they have misunderstood so many other things: The economy. Foreign policy. Why countries need borders. The difference between male and female. The fact that math, boulders and roads – among many other things – are not racist.
But Man o’ Manischewitz, does the Left not understand crime!
Many progressives are inordinately fond of theory, much preferring it to messy reality. (Hence the old joke about the academic left’s commonplace question, “I know it works in the real world, but does it work in theory?”) And nowhere does this infatuation with theory manifest itself more than when considering crime and criminals.
The left can look at a mob of looters, or gang members pimping out underage girls, or thugs carjacking unresisting senior citizens and shooting them anyway, and not see sharp gradations of good and evil.
Instead they detect a subtle fog of societal inequities, large historical forces, and systemic unfairness that envelops and overwhelms individuals, robbing them of free will and absolving them of moral responsibility.
Think of how many recent crime stories have induced the left into the most absurd gyrations to try to deny the most obvious truths:
An idiot reporter stands before a block of burning buildings, surrounded by a howling mob of feral Biden voters, and looks into a camera and proclaims, “These protests are mostly peaceful.”
A gormless prosecutor shows video of three violent felons chasing and assaulting a boy scout with a rifle until he’s forced to righteously shoot each of them, and the moron calls the assailants “victims” and the boy scout the “aggressor,” and his assistant/Chris Farley’s dim-witted doppleganger says that the boy scout “should have just taken a beating.”
Elected Democrats watch packs of looters vandalizing buildings, stealing electronics and luxury goods, and see a righteous cry for racial justice.
When video of dozens of smash-and-grab mobs in various big cities have been broadcast for weeks, silly little dullard AOC insists that rumors of such events “have not panned out.”
For many of us, it’s starting to feel like we’re on different planets.
As a thought experiment, consider a few recent crime story examples. I’ll give you the scenario, then – using my magical wizard hat to put myself into the mind of a leftist Soros fan – I’ll give you the lefty’s reaction. And if I can speak for the average, level-headed conservative – and I think that I can – I’ll give you my reaction.
Crime story #1. Last December an antifa thug named Thomas Starks carried an axe into a government building in North Dakota and used it to destroy the door and window of a GOP state senator’s office. His attack was caught on tape, and he ended up pleading guilty. While awaiting sentencing, he showed himself to be an unrepentant creep, boasting on social media that he “will always attack fascists.”
While FBI sentencing guidelines called for 10-16 months in prison for his crime, he instead got probation and a $2800 fine. The icing on the cake: the FBI gave him his axe back! (I’m not making that up.)
Lefty Soros fan’s take: His fine was too high. After all, he was only fighting fascists, and fascists are bad!
My take: Give him the maximum in prison, and when he gets out, give him his axe back. Handle first. So that if he ever approaches a government building again, security will be able to recognize him from a long way off. On account of his funny way of walking.
Crime Story #2. Last week the staff of a San Francisco restaurant asked three uniformed cops to leave, after complaining that their uniforms and sidearms made them feel “unsafe.” Then they bragged about it on social media, declaring their precious eatery to be a “safe space,” where they would grudgingly allow the officers to eat,“when off duty, out of uniform, and without their weapons.”
Lefty Soros fan’s take: Yay! Power to the people! Mean old guns make me lose my appetite anyway!
My take: I’m tempted to follow a “when in Rome” attitude, and react as a native San Franciscan might, i.e. dropping a deuce in the middle of the dining room and then aggressively panhandling from every customer in the place. But I’m a gentleman, and not some degenerate anarchist.
So I’d just enter that restaurant’s number and address into the SFPD phone system and record a message, to be played in case they ever called the police: “Hello, this is the police department. We’re sorry to hear that you are in the middle of being robbed, beaten, sexually assaulted, or murdered. We’d love to come and help you, but unfortunately we wear scary uniforms and carry nasty old guns, and we know how those offend your delicate sensibilities. So please enjoy being robbed, beaten, sexually assaulted or murdered in a cop-free zone. And remember: There’s no place like a safe space!”
Crime Story #3:
Right after Thanksgiving a mob of youts went on a mass shoplifting spree at a California mall. Afterwards, one of the ambitious thieves was running away with his arms full of stolen clothes, when he was set upon by a half-dozen other scumbags, who fought over the booty in an orgy of looter-on-looter crime.
Lefty Soros fan’s take: That’s so sad! Those poor children don’t even realize that their real enemy is the white supremacist, capitalist system that is oppressing them. They should aim their anger at the real villain that’s keeping them down: Trump! I only hope that none of them were hurt!
My take: You do you, looters! That stolen swag is yours, so don’t you dare let any other crooks disrespect you by trying to steal what you stole, fair and square! Stand up for yourself, and fight to the death!
Crime Story #4:
On December 8th, a North Carolina man arrived home to find that a thief had been trying to steal a catalytic converter (informally known as a “cat” in auto parts circles) from one of his cars in his driveway. Unfortunately for the would-be thief, the jack had slipped, dropping the car on him, and allowing him to win the “assume asphalt temperature challenge.”
Lefty Soros-fan take: Aww! That poor man was a victim of the ruthless capitalist system that allows some greedy oppressors to amass many catalytic converters, while the have-nots remain converter-less. I call for protests to shut down the city. No catalytic converters, no peace!
My take: Must. Not. Laugh. (Clear my throat, take a deep breath… don’t think of any dad jokes.) After all, it’s always tragic when someone loses his lif– HA! HAHA! HAHAHA! That cat sure didn’t have nine lives! I wonder if the crook was wearing striped socks, and his legs rolled up like that witch’s when the house fell on her? HAHAH—cough, cough. I mean to say… Very sad story.
All sarcasm aside, it has been infuriating to watch once-great American cities descend into pitiful helplessness, voluntarily and needlessly surrendering to roving bands of thugs and thieves who now attack and loot in broad daylight, with impunity!
I’d like to blame the feckless and treacherous elected officials who have been allowing this to happen – and I do think that they are culpable. But the people in those cities have been electing those idiots, often for many years.
If they could be made to suffer the consequences without also victimizing the sane minority among them, there might be some justice in watching the decay and suffering they are bringing down on their cities.
But this is Cautious Optimism, and I do see a bright side in the current chaos: these policies are now out in the open, and they are not playing well with most Americans, to say the least.
The “defund the police” drive was all the rage (literally) only a year ago, but between that and the revolving door of deviants produced by “bail reform,” things have deteriorated so quickly that even many blue state voters are becoming distraught, and support for “soft on crime” policies is receding faster than Brandon’s cognitive abilities.
I see two possibilities in the next several years, both of which I think would ultimately benefit the country.
The most positive outcome would be for a giant electoral wave of common-sense, tough-on-crime conservative pushback to decimate the Dems in ’22 and ’24, repudiating their failed policies so clearly that they’ll become anathema to any ambitious office-seeker for a generation.
The next best option – which is not without its dangers, but which I’d guess might be slightly more likely – will be for a continued, accelerating sorting of our society into more polarized red and blue areas.
In red states, people will beef up their police forces, and they’ll expect them to fight crime aggressively, and will support them when they do. For that reason, red staters won’t need to form militias or take any extreme actions. But enough of them will be individually armed and willing to protect themselves and their property to persuade most criminals to seek easier victims elsewhere.
Such as in blue states, where the undefended stores offer easy pickings, and the restaurants are full of soft eunuchs who are afraid of uniforms and sidearms.
I think the purple states will transform, as their citizens migrate toward one side or the other. My bet is that most of them will become redder, because I can’t believe that most Americans will react like the cowed and cowering residents of Portland, Seattle or Minneapolis.
I have to believe that if roving mobs of looters, or BLM and antifa rioters, who have had free reign in blue cities try to spread their class and racial warfare to red cities, they’re going to discover a nation of honorary “rooftop Koreans.”
And the self-styled “revolutionaries” — who are used to sucker-punching individuals, terrorizing lone drivers, tearing down inanimate statues, and screaming at cops who are prevented from responding by far-left politicians — are going to learn a hard lesson.
It’s a lesson encapsulated in the words of the nameless philosopher I quoted a few columns ago, who observed an aggressive would-be bully with a baseball bat stop and retreat when she saw her target produce a pistol.
Say it with me, CO nation: “That iron get ya mind right!”
It’s been a long 4 years, and it’s only been 11 months.