by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Editors at Investor’s Business Daily aren’t that impressed with the president’s crime-fighting strategy.
Even as violent crime spreads like wildfire across U.S. cities, President Obama advises police to “de-escalate” encounters with suspects and find “alternatives to arrest.” Spoken like a man with a protective detail.
Not to mention a radical agenda impervious to reality.
On Tuesday, the president spoke to the International Association of Chiefs of Police in Chicago. There, he and his attorney general handed out a guidebook published by his Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The 30-page guide, titled “Moving from Recommendations to Action,” is designed to help local police departments implement his “criminal justice reforms.”
Under the section, “Changing the Culture of Policing,” the document recommends that cops give more “voice” to minority suspects, treating them with “dignity and respect,” while checking their own “implicit” cultural and racial biases. In other words, more listening and less cuffing.
“Agencies should acknowledge the role of policing in past and present injustice and discrimination, and how it is a hurdle to the promotion of community trust,” the White House pamphlet strongly advises.
To help build that trust, Obama earlier this week proposed that cops drive ice cream trucks into high-crime areas and hand out free ice cream cones to suspected drug dealers.
Apparently, they have started doing it in riot-torn Baltimore, and the president really liked the idea.
“I do want all the chiefs to look at the task force recommendations we’ve put forward post-Ferguson,” Obama said. “There are some real problems in certain jurisdictions that we’ve seen.”
That’s a not-so-veiled threat. His Justice Department already has launched investigations of two dozen allegedly racist police forces. Other departments are falling in line, also adopting more lenient policies.
But Obama is pushing for more of what his own FBI director — and even his former chief of staff — complain is causing record high murders to break out in inner cities across the country.
Perhaps a dose of “law-and-order conservatism” might help.