George Soros, the billionaire philanthropist and bete noire of conservatives, has written a column for The Wall Street Journal defending his donations to liberal prosecutors who are releasing criminals on low or no bail, resulting in their frequent commission of new crimes.
Mr. Soros claims a choice between public safety and justice is a false one and that they reinforce each other. He can pontificate on the issue because he likely has paid security protection.
His proposals for reducing crime and reforming the criminal justice system have been tried before. He makes the ludicrous claim that “there is no connection between the election of reform-minded prosecutors and local crime rates. In fact, violent crime in recent years has generally been increasing more quickly in jurisdictions without reform-minded prosecutors.”
In fact, violent and other crimes have been increasing in cities and states run by Democrat mayors and prosecutors, some of whom are facing recall elections. According to worldpopulationreview.com, Democrats run 11 of the deadliest 15 American cities.
Like many other progressives, Mr. Soros blames racism for the number of Black men arrested for violent and nonviolent crimes. Yet the latest Department of Justice statistics reveal that for Black victims of violent crime, 70.3% of offenders are fellow Blacks while 10.6% of offenders are white. Is Black-on-Black crime the result of racism? This is not “breaking news” as the trend has been known for years. If liberal solutions to violent crime worked, would they not have by now?
The main causes of rising crime, in addition to progressive prosecutors funded by Mr. Soros, are moral and spiritual. A sense of entitlement and envy of the successful, as well as the absence of fathers in the home and the loss of a shared moral and value system, have all contributed to rising crime. Consider the rampant looting of high-end stores and pharmacies one regularly sees on TV news.
No racial group has suffered more from violent crime than African Americans. Several prominent Black voices have correctly diagnosed the crime problem, among them former NAACP leader Kweisi Mfume, writer Thomas Sowell and Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Riley. When asked by Larry Elder which posed the bigger threat to Black communities, white racism or absent fathers, Mr. Mfume said, “The absence of Black fathers.” Thomas Sowell agrees: “The black family, which had survived centuries of slavery and discrimination, began rapidly disintegrating in the liberal welfare state that subsidized unwed pregnancy and changed welfare from an emergency rescue to a way of life.”
Writing on the 50th anniversary of a report by then-assistant Labor Secretary (later senator) Daniel Patrick Moynihan on the state of the Black family, Mr. Riley noted: “History has proved that Moynihan was onto something. When the report was released, about 25 percent of black children and 5 percent of white children lived in a household headed by a single mother. During the next 20 years, the black percentage would double and the racial gap would widen. Today more than 70% of all black births are to unmarried women, twice the white percentage.”
While no prosecutor can rebuild the family structure, they can better protect the public by enforcing laws and tightening the bail structure, especially for violent offenders. The revival of the family structure is up to the religious community and prison programs that seek to spiritually transform criminals so they are less likely to commit new crimes when released.
The Soros approach makes it more likely offenders and offenses will increase. Perhaps he should speak with crime victims to learn what they think about the revolving door that has become too much a part of the criminal justice system.
• Readers may email Cal Thomas at [email protected] Look for Cal Thomas’ latest book, “America’s Expiration Date: The Fall of Empires and Superpowers and the Future of the United States” (HarperCollins/Zondervan).