NYT Writer Can’t Explain US Crime Wave – So Blames America Instead of BLM

Photo by Lucas Edmonds

ANALYSIS – In one of its custom newsletters, the New York Times just published a piece highlighting America’s continuing crime wave, and the liberal paper of record is at a loss to explain it. Murders, in particular are on a tear, now at the highest point over two decades.

The story ‘A violent weekend highlights America’s continuing crime wave,’ by David Leonhardt, goes through every liberal excuse it can but still can’t tell us why crime has exploded in the U.S. since about 2020.

So, delving as deep as he can into sociological psychobabble (can we say ‘anomie?’), Leonghardt ends up essentially saying the crime wave must just be ’cause ‘Merica.’

We are to blame.

Of course, he tries to use COVID as an excuse, but admits it can’t explain it fully:

…the pandemic seems to be playing a role: The trends either began or accelerated shortly after Covid overwhelmed daily life in the spring of 2020. But the pandemic appears to be only part of the story.

The Times author absurdly tries to use ‘police brutality’ as an excuse, referring to what some allegedly call a “sense of lawlessness stemming from police violence (like the murder of George Floyd),” as if the lawlessness perpetrated by violent BLM-inspired rioters and criminals was the fault of some bad cops.

But then the NYT journalist admits that the crime increases are not limited to places where ‘police brutality’ has been worst, so that can’t be it.

Then there is the favorite liberal trope – it’s all about guns – so he dutifully mentions “a rise in gun sales during the pandemic.” But he later also admits: “Gun crime isn’t the only kind of violent crime that is rising…” So that can’t be it either.

Most egregiously, he lightly touches on what I would consider is a primary cause of the rise in crime across America, that Leonhardt ridiculously refers to as police “officers’ timidity in response to recent criticism of them.”

This, of course, spins the widespread, national abuse of police, ambushes and killings of officers, extensive ‘defund the police’ efforts, mass firings of police officers, mass resignations, lack of prosecutions for anti-cop crimes, and myriad other reasons why cops are not doing, or restrained from doing, their jobs.

And in his ideologically blinkered eyes, this can’t be it either.

Since none of the traditional liberal excuses for increased crime seem to work, and he comically dismisses one of the most obvious, credible factors – the recent ‘war on cops,’ Leonhardt then simply blames America as a whole. He writes in reference to the growing crime epidemic:

This country’s recent dysfunction is bigger than Covid. It is a dark new form of American exceptionalism.

Yup, it’s all America’s fault.

To be fair, he does make some valid observations, such as: “crime tends to increase if people lose trust in society’s institutions and basic fairness.”

Could be.

And that crime waves “often occur when people are feeling frustrated with society, government and their fellow citizens. This frustration can feed a breakdown in societal norms and a rise in what the sociologist Émile Durkheim called ‘anomie.’”


The writer adds, without giving any effort to understand why, (hint – draconian Democrat COVID policies to start with) that: “Nearly 80 percent are dissatisfied with the country’s direction, according to Gallup.”


He then adds that:

People spend hours screaming at one another on social media. Many Americans consider people with opposing political ideas to be so wrong that they don’t deserve the right to express their views. Polls also show an alarming degree of skepticism about democracy and openness to political violence.


Leonhardt then also correctly notes that:

Along with these signs of alienation, a wide range of behavior has deteriorated. Alcohol abuse and drug overdoses have increased. Americans’ blood pressure is up, and measures of mental health are down. Vehicle crashes have surged.

In each of these cases, the pandemic seems to be playing a role: The trends either began or accelerated shortly after Covid overwhelmed daily life in the spring of 2020.

So, is the writer correct in blaming America and COVID exclusively for our current crime epidemic? Or does he miss the boat entirely?

Well, he is right to blame societal breakdown (often caused by liberal policies) for some of the crime, and that should include draconian, Democrat-mandated COVID lockdowns, but he is dead wrong on totally ignoring the significant, if not primary reason for our current crime wave:

the national, BLM-inspired ‘war on cops.’

The violent, hateful abuse heaped on our nation’s law enforcement by BLM, the far-left, most Democrats, and a compliant media, since 2020, plus the insane ‘defund the police’ efforts, had a disastrous impact on crime prevention.

BLM needs to be considered reason number one for America’s current crime wave – not ‘anomie.’ ADN

Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank. - paulcrespo.substack.com - PAULCRESPO.COM

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