by Will Bunch | Columnist
The Philadelphia Inquirer
July 15, 2021

Progressives need to understand what’s behind rising city homicides and develop plans to reduce shootings — without yesterday’s police abuses.

… The naysayers are absolutely right: There is no new crime wave in the United States, as most broadly defined. In 2020, property crime fell nationally and violent crime, which includes murder but also other offenses, rose by a minimal 3%. But the same stats show a significant rise in homicides in 2020 — up about 25%, according to the preliminary numbers — and 2021 is running even worse in many places. America is clearly experiencing a murder crisis, especially by gun.

… “I think anyone who thinks that the way to improve public safety is to invest in law enforcement is just pushing us further down the path toward a police state, where the only public safety we have is purchased and maintained through force and coercion,” Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice of the City University of New York, told a recent forum.

[ Read the op-ed at The Philadelphia Inquirer ]

A double shooting at N 15th St & W Courtland St, in Philadelphia, July 14, 2021. Police say two males, a 19-year-old and a 16-year-old, were both shot after being chased by another vehicle in the city’s Logan section. JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer