Opinion Opinion: America's crime wave tests both parties
Biden expresses some regret for COVID-19 test shortage
President Biden said Wednesday that the current shortage of coronavirus tests is not a failure of his administration but expressed regret that he did not ramp up supplies sooner ahead of the rapid spread of the omicron variant."I don't think it's a failure," Biden said in an interview with ABC's David Muir that aired Wednesday evening. "You could argue that we should have known a year ago, six months ago, two months ago, a month ago.""I wish I"I don't think it's a failure," Biden said in an interview with ABC's David Muir that aired Wednesday evening. "You could argue that we should have known a year ago, six months ago, two months ago, a month ago.
One of the lessons of the past two years -- and one that will come in handy in 2022 -- is that when problems are real, playing political games and twisting the truth does not help to solve them. That seemingly self-evident bit of wisdom, ignored withby the previous administration, should stand as the centerpiece in another major challenge -- the battle against the rise in violent crime across in the United States.
Whether you prefer Democrats or Republicans, the key here is solving the problem: stemming the rise in violence that is leaving thousands of Americans dead and millions more feeling vulnerable and unsafe.
Biden: Who Could Have Predicted What Many People Predicted?
The president’s excuses for his administration’s COVID-testing failures don’t add up.At a press conference Tuesday, Biden responded snappishly to PBS’s Yamiche Alcindor, who had asked him, “What’s your message to Americans who are trying to get tested now and who are not able to get tested and who are wondering what took so long to ramp up testing?”
First, the facts. The murder rate in the US, up 30% from 2019, according to provisional numbers from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That was the largest single-year increase in 100 years (although it's the homicide rates of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s). The numbers have continued to rise in 2021, although at a . Other types of crime but not as much as murder.
To hear the GOP tell it, this isof Democratic policies, affecting cities and states led by Democratic leaders and majorities. In reality, the facts tell a different story. Crime increased last year in most states in the US. The largest in Montana (84% increase), South Dakota (81%), Delaware (62%) and Kentucky (61%.) That's hardly a geographic atlas of progressive politics.
EXPLAINER: How will Biden's COVID-19 test giveaway work?
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden says the federal government will buy half a billion COVID-19 rapid test kits and distribute them free of charge to people to use at home. But despite the high public demand for tests, it will still be several more weeks before these kits are available to be shipped. The administration is still working on details for how the program will work. DOES THE GOVERNMENT HAVE THE TESTS? Not yet. As of this week, the departments of Defense and Health and Human Services were “executing on what's called an ‘accelerated emergency contract,'" the White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, said. A contract is expected to be signed soon.
To be sure, crime rates are higher in urban areas, where there's higher density, and cities tend to be more Democratic than Republican. But the dominant factors are more likely related to realities of urban life -- not party affiliation.
So, why has the level of violence soared in the country? There's. The pandemic has something to do with it. People are frustrated, anxious and stressed. But the pandemic has hit the entire planet, and the crime rate has not soared across the world. The exploding murder rate is an American phenomenon.
No developed countrythan the US, and guns are being used in an of murders. When guns are brandished in a fight or in a robbery, the chance that someone dies is much greater.
Crime rates have also likely increasedbetween the police and the community. Racial tensions and animosity have led to many police officers , have made others reluctant to intervene in conflicts and have caused the public to police they don't trust.
LAPD warn of crime wave, but data show theft, robberies down
The numbers tell one story, but recent messaging from the Los Angeles Police Department appears to be telling another. © Provided by NBC News Robbery, burglary and theft are down in Los Angeles, compared to 2019, according to the latest crime data from the police department. But in recent weeks, police have indicated those types of crimes are rising, pointing to incidents involving “smash-and-grab” shoplifters who descended on high-end shopping districts at the height of the holiday shopping season. At a Dec. 2 news conference, L.A.
In my view, another factor is the political climate. With so many Republicansthe system is unfair and falsely claiming elections are illegitimate and with many Democrats the system is rigged to favor the rich and powerful, there is a growing sense of anger and mistrust among segments of the public.
As the 2022 political campaigns gain traction, we will hear more and more claims that murders are rising because Democrats chanted "defund the police," even though many Democratssuch defunding measures. Democrats, for their part, may choose to blame it all on America's wild availability of guns.
For responsible political leaders, the right approach is to tackle the problem with facts, creative ideas and effective implementation.
Sure, thein the hands of civilians is a daunting problem with deadly consequences, and the failure to address it is a blemish on America's system of government. Efforts to create gun safety rules should continue, but that cannot be the only focus.
The elections of late 2021 already showed that "defund the police" may have been a satisfying street chant after horrifying murders perpetrated by police officers, but the public -- including Democrats of all races --, and many want additional officers, too. That's Eric Adams, a former policeman, was elected mayor of New York City and why boosting and improving policing was a in Atlanta's mayoral election.
Schools Might Be Heading for a January ‘Omicron Break’
Unless we radically rethink pandemic protocols, there will be a lot of absences in a lot of places.Ben: On Monday, the CDC released new COVID guidelines advising that people who have tested positive need to isolate for only five days, down from ten, and that they can return to the general population if they’re feeling better at that point — no negative test needed. That last point especially has drawn a lot of criticism.
The Justice Department has just launched a massive $1.6 billion program of grants, with hundreds of communities across the country set to receive funds to reduce violent crime. The money will support projects on gangs, domestic violence and novel crime prevention ideas.
But creative thinking on crime should not require reinventing the wheel. When one looks at the rest of the developed world, the failure of the United States is breathtaking.
In the Netherlands, where I spend part of the year, the number of murders in 2020from already low figures. The total number of homicides for the entire country was 121, less than 7 per 1 million people. That's the rate in the US. The capital, Amsterdam, a city of more than 800,000, suffered just one murder a month.
Interestingly, according to the European Commission on Human Rights, police only shoot to kill when it's "." And when they shoot, they for the legs of assailant. In the US, officers are generally allowed to use deadly force when they have a "reasonable belief" that their life is in danger.
I've watched Dutch officers interact with the public in difficult situations. They seem supernaturally focused on keeping calm and reducing tensions. The imperative ofis finally gaining attention in the US, where the police have seemed .
As you read this, you may be hearing a siren blaring in the background or have just read yet another news account of a shooting. The problem is real. Downplaying it will not do. But simply playing politics is hardly the answer. As politicians eye the 2022 elections, voters would do well to watch closely and see how they handle this challenge. Their words and their actions should tell us which among them deserve support.
California Kids Who Took State Exams Drops From Typical 95 Percent to 25 Percent in 2020-21 .
State education officials said difficulties from internet access to technology deficiencies in certain areas made it difficult to administer the tests remotely.Students missing the tests, most for the second year in a row, leaves a gap in data state officials usually use to track education progress and determine the effectiveness of new policies from year to year.