By Christian Carvajal
New York City is undergoing a seismic shift with some drastic changes; the COVID-19 epidemic has cost the city upwards of $9 billion in lost tax revenue due to the lingering effects of the economic shutdown.
Yes, the NYPD's budget for the fiscal year 2019 was north of $5.6 billion, but they patrol the largest city in the country.1
Last Thursday, New York City Council voted to cut $1 billion from the NYPD budget. If things weren't already in chaos, the call to defund the NYPD's $6 billion budget, has given rise to the City Hall Autonomous Zone in New York. Fighting for social justice, against police brutality, and racial equality has an eerie resemblance to Marxist and socialist ideologies. These tenement communities that have risen in major American cities are the latest intersectional battleground in the fight for equality.
The architect of the movement, Jawanza James Williams, a self-identified socialist, wants nothing more than to turn New York City into a socialist hotbed, by hijacking the emotions of young self-identified socialists. 2 Signs reading Black Lives Matter, Trans Lives Matter, and Defund the Police have littered the NYC area where residents are airing their grievances towards police brutality, police corruption, and racism in general.
Their solution is simple: defunding the police will reduce racism and crime in minority communities. They believe that the cascading effect of defunding the police will inevitably result in lower crime rates and an end to systemic racism. They are shifting the financial focus from the police to community-oriented policing, which will not produce a safe environment.
The political activists say they want a system that is not reactionary and retaliatory, instead of a community-minded system with adequate funding to help minority and disenfranchised individuals.
This utopian environment that socialist and BLM advocates think will flourish without a formal police system will only add to the complexity of the situation. Who will ordinary citizens call when events like these happen in broad daylight? 3
The reality is that these protestors have been inundated with emotional, race batting rhetoric on social media and through mainstream media. These protestors feel subjugated to the inherently racist police force because they are overwhelmed with the sense of urgency that social media has created. To quote Winston Churchill, "a lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on."
PBA President Patrick J. Lynch said in a June 29 press release: "Mayor de Blasio's message to New Yorkers today was clear: you will have fewer cops on your streets. Shootings more than doubled again last week. Even right now, the NYPD doesn't have enough staffing to shift cops to one neighborhood without making another neighborhood less safe. We will say it again: the Mayor and the City Council have surrendered the city to lawlessness. Things won't improve until New Yorkers hold them responsible." 4
A glance at the NYPD's CompStat 2.0 website captures, in real-time, the instability and chaos NYC residents are being forced to navigate. 5 Crime is down on paper, considering petty crimes were decriminalized, and police officers have their hands tied with unsupportive city leadership.
The question remains, are we going to continue to accept the lies socialism and BLM offers us, or are we going to firmly denounce all acts of racial injustice AND also support our police officers?
Christian Carvajal is a New York Contributing Writer for Young Americans Against Socialism. He holds a B.S. from St. John’s University and is currently earning an MPA degree from Marist College. When he is not reporting on socialism running wild in America, you can find him at Prince St. Pizza in N.Y.C, researching issues in higher education, or outdoors hiking.