Ever since the death of George Floyd, major cities around the country have done everything in their power to strip police of their ability to keep the streets safe. Some removed qualified immunity, others chose to reallocate funding from the police force to social services, and still others just decided that people who were arrested need not stay in prison, by instituting the Orwellian-named “bail-reform.” Over the last two-plus years, we have seen a rapid decay in major cities, as homelessness and crime run roughshod over their streets, while district attorneys pat themselves on the back for being the driving force behind the transformations made under their watch.
But I believe we are on the way to turning this around. At this stage, it is clear to me that as a society, we have already hit rock-bottom. And the driving force behind this feeling is based on three recent low-profile incidents and the reactions from unlikely sources.
Low-Profile Incident 1
On August 12 in the Bronx, Van Phu Bui sucker punched a man, sending him into a coma. On August 20, the Bronx District Attorney, Darcel Clark, downgraded the felony charges of attempted murder to assault and harassment, which are misdemeanors. Phu Bui has a long violent criminal past, is a level three registered sex offender, and is on lifetime parole. This did not stop the DA from allowing him back on the streets within hours of his arraignment. Later, Governor Kathy Hochul responded to public outcry by stepping in and seeing that this violent criminal was behind bars.
Low-Profile Incident 2
On August 13, five people took a cab to Far Rockaway, got out, and refused to pay. The cab driver chased after them, caught one, and was immediately surrounded and beat by all five. Austin Amos, who had been arrested 10 previous times, dealt the final two blows that eventually killed the father of four.
Low-Profile Incident 3
On August 11, Alexander Wright viciously beat an New York City transit worker, sending him to the hospital with a broken collarbone and a dislocated nose. Wright had previously been arrested 41 times, including a hate crime against an Asian woman in 2021. Despite his extensive violent history, Wright has been out and about, and his bail was set at a measly $5,000, despite prosecutors requesting up to $30,000.
The reason for my optimism is the response from the famed far-Left internet organization The Young Turks. For those of you unfamiliar with TYT, know that they are the media wing that backs all of your favorite Justice Democrats, including Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and Cori Bush. In fact, the founder of TYT, Cenk Uygur, is a co-founder of the political organization Justice Democrats. They push every socially-progressive stance you can think of, and of course, criminal justice reform has always been a huge part of their platform.
In a twelve-minute video, Uygur and co-host Ana Kasparian launched into a tirade, explaining how bail reform has gone too far, to the point where a man arrested 41 times is back on the street free to assault subway workers just doing their jobs. And honestly, when you lose The Young Turks, you’ve lost the game. This media organization represents the furthest left-leaning people in the country. If they can see the error of their ways, it is not a stretch to think that the tide is turning. The crime may seem bad now, but this has to be the lowest point. We can look forward to a brighter future now that the Progressives have seen just what damage is done when their policies are followed through to their inevitable conclusions.
Izzo Zwiren is the host of The Jewish Living Podcast, where he and his guests delve into any and all areas of Orthodox Judaism.