When he took the podium recently at the National Press Club, New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) blamed gun manufacturers for the surging crime rates in his city. He urged the media representatives present to “tell the story of how the gun industry has betrayed America. How the civilian firearms industry went from supplying hunters with rifles to marketing violence as a lifestyle.”
None of this was surprising, as Adams has made his anti-Second Amendment feelings known many times before. Also unsurprising is that while Adams blamed law-abiding gun manufacturers and gun owners for his city’s growing problems with crime and violence, he did not mention NYC’s notoriously soft-on-crime district attorney, Alvin Bragg (D). He also left out New York state’s vaunted “bail reform,” which has let thousands of criminals back on the streets to do what they do best: commit more crimes!
It is worthwhile for all who live in the Empire State to take a hard look at the real reasons for the state’s rise in crime, and question politicians like Adams, who seem unwilling to address the soft-on-crime realities at work in New York, accountable.
Statistics reported by the New York City Police Department revealed for the week ending September 25, 2022, that all major crime categories had big increases as compared to the same week in 2021. Murders were up 33%, robberies jumped 9.5% and rape complaints increased 13.3%.
An estimated 321 people in New York City had their lives taken from January 1 to September 25, 2022.
How does New York combat these staggering numbers? Mayor Adams told the Press Club’s journalists that they needed to do a better job covering “gun violence” by identifying the specific make and models of guns used, and to then try to hold the makers of these guns accountable for the criminal misuse of said guns.
Adams’ “solution” to his city’s surging crime rates would be laughable, if city residents didn’t have to bear the brunt of such illogical thinking. Consider what occurred when Alvin Bragg took office as NYC’s district attorney in January 2021. On the first day of his administration, Bragg sent a memo to city prosecutors outlining his so-called “progress policies,” that, according to the New York Post, “ordered his prosecutors to stop seeking prison sentences for hordes of criminals and to downgrade felony charges in cases including armed robberies and drug dealing … .”
Among Bragg’s instructions to his prosecutors was that armed robbers who used guns or other deadly weapons to hold up stores and other businesses would be prosecuted only for petty larceny, a misdemeanor, as long as no victims were seriously injured and there was no “genuine risk of physical harm” to anyone.
As the Post noted, “Armed robbery, a class B felony, would typically be punishable by a maximum of 25 years in prison, while petty larceny subjects offenders to up to 364 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.”
“Bragg gives criminals the roadmap to freedom from prosecution and control of our streets,” said Paul DiGiacomo, the head of the NYPD Detectives’ Endowment Association at the time the district attorney’s memo made the news.
And then there’s the state of New York itself, which in 2019 passed sweeping changes to the state’s legal system, including eliminating bail for nearly all misdemeanor offenses (the exceptions being for misdemeanor sex offenses and criminal contempt for orders of protection violations in domestic violence cases). It also eliminated bail and pretrial detention for nearly all non-violent felonies.
For those cases where bail could be set, judges had to consider the defendant’s financial situation, and could, unbelievably, only set bail that defendants can afford.