Numbers Do Not Lie -- Murder and Violent Crime Way up After Democrats and BLM Demonized the Police in 2020

AP Photo/Jeff Roberson

This story out today in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution is about Atlanta, but you can substitute just about any major city dominated by Democrat Party political leadership and the theme of the story would be the same as of June 2021:

Atlanta police have investigated 64 homicide cases in 2021, a 58% increase over this time last year. The surge follows a historically deadly 2020, when authorities investigated 157 homicide cases — the most in more than two decades.

There are some noteworthy specifics in those two sentences that need to be unpacked.

First, the mathematical comparison of 64 homicides this year being a 58% increase over the number of homicides “over this time last year” must be emphasized.  The author doesn’t specify the dates he has in mind, but let’s just assume he’s referring to June 10.  If 64 represents a 58% increase, that means it’s slightly more than double.  One-half of 64 would be 32, so the number of homicides from January to June 10, 2020, was probably 29-30.  That would be a rate of 6 per month.

But we know the number of homicides at the end of 2020 was 157.   Simple math tells you that there were 127 homicides over the final seven months of 2020 — a rate of 18 per month, or three times the homicide rate prior over the first five months.

With only 64 homicides over the first six months of 2021, Atlanta has at least reduced that pace back to 12 per month.  That’s still a long way from where they were before BLM and other groups took to the streets with their mostly peaceful protests.”

But Atlanta’s mayor doesn’t see a connection.

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has referred to the spike in violence as a “COVID crime wave…”

Keisha Lance Bottoms and every other Democrat mayor of every big city with a one-party political system makes this same claim to deflect blame from themselves, their policies, and the race-baiting agitators they welcomed into their cities for political reasons after the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis.

… but the city’s death toll continues to mount as more Georgians get vaccinated and life returns to normal. As of June, Atlanta’s murders are up and shootings have increased by 40%, according to the latest data. Meanwhile, overall arrests are down by about 43% as Atlanta’s police force remains more than 400 officers under its authorized level.

More than 200 officers quit the force in 2020, many after criminal charges were filed against the two involved in the deadly shooting of Rayshard Brooks and other officers who used their Tasers on two college students during last summer’s protests downtown. Another 75 Atlanta police officers have left since the start of the year, records show.

The story is the same at big-city police departments across the country — NYPD, Chicago PD, Minneapolis PD, Seattle PD, SFPD, Dallas PD. The list could go on and on.  

The one thing each situation has in common is radical left-wing liberal politicians running the cities and having leadership over these police departments.

As I was in the process of writing this piece, a different story was published in the NY Post which covered some national data on this subject that has just been released.

Several agencies in the nation are seeing an almost 45-percent surge in retirements and departures compared to the year before Floyd’s death in Minneapolis at the hands of convicted cop Derek Chauvin, according to data from the Police Executive Research Forum obtained by the Associated Press.

For all of 2020, 5,300 uniformed NYPD officers retired or said they would retire, a 75 percent increase from the year before, according to the data.

Some 2,600 retired and another 2,746 filed for retirement last year, according to the data. By comparison in 2019, 1,509 left NYPD and another 1,544 filed for retirement, the data showed. Another 831 officers retired or filed to leave by April 21.

The AP story that the NY Post refers to reported the following:

Researchers heard from 194 police departments last month about their hires, resignations and retirements between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021, and the same categories from April 1, 2019, to March 31, 2020.

Rapidly increasing rates of violent crime and murder juxtaposed with a rapid escalation in the pace of police retirements following Democrat Party-led demonization of the police, and support for rioting, looting, and violence in the streets.

The “elephant in the room” identified by Andrew Sullivan in his “Weekly Dish” Substack publication last week (behind a paywall) is the overt link between the May 25, 2020 — the date of George Floyd’s death — the BLM-led rioting that followed, and the skyrocketing murder rates in big cities across the country.

You can see for yourself in this story from the Unz Review, which put together a chart of the increase in the cumulative number of murders in 19 cities that publish day-by-day homicide stats.  The line in the chart at the link represents the weekly percentage increase during January through September in two periods — the average weekly numbers during 2015-2019, and the average weekly numbers in 2020.

As the author notes, cumulative murders were up from January to March 2020, but only in the range of 10-15%.

There was no noticeable change in the pattern during March through May when the COVID lockdowns began to take effect.  Between March 17 — when San Francisco was the first major city to announce COVID lockdowns — and May 25, the cumulative increase in the murder rate over the five-year average during the same weeks/months remained at or near 14%.

But beginning the week following May 25, the cumulative murder rate for 2020 begins an extraordinary climb when compared to the average of the five prior years.  By the end of September — after a summer of “mostly peaceful protests” led by BLM and other Democrat Party interest groups —  the increase in the cumulative number of murders over the prior five-year average was 30%.

The protests and rioting coincided with the nationwide calls from Democrat Party leaders and Democrat elected officials in these big cities to “defund” the police and alter the focus of the criminal justice system in ways — like “no cash bail” — that have emptied out jails and prisons.

The results of these policies are now reflected in police retirements and increasing crime statistics.

I posed this question on Twitter after first looking into this issue:

If the after-effects of George Floyd’s death while in custody of Minneapolis Police Officers has been a significant drop in the deaths of black men at the hands of the police, but if as a consequence there has been a decline in policing of inner-city neighborhoods due to retirements and changing policing strategies, resulting in more innocent black citizens  being killed by criminals, is the trade-off worth it?

Democrat politicians should be made to answer that question.