The defund the police movement has not only come up short, leading to massive crime waves and new public calls for public safety, it has led to a massive funding of the police from New York to Los Angeles, The New York Times reported Sunday.
New York City has funded an addition $200 million to the New York Police Department. Los Angeles gave its forces a 3% boost, and even places like the city Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., once ran as mayor, Burlington, Vermont, went from cutting the police budget to approving $10,000 bonuses for police to stay on the job, according to the Times.
Even liberal cities in deep-red Texas were cutting police funding, but now Austin’s budget has been jacked up to record heights and Dallas Democrat Mayor Eric Johnson, who is Black, has moved to increase the size of the police force.
“As an African American male who came of age in the 1990s, I remember a lot of people whose lives were devastated by violence,” Johnson told the Times. “I don’t want to go back there.”
As the city roiled with protests and last year’s calls for defunding police, a wave of violent crime led to a 25% increase in homicides to 252, the Times reported.
But now, after Mayor Johnson wrote over the summer, “Dallas needs more police officers, the city has undertaken a ‘hot spot’ policing method, focusing forces where the most violent crime is occurring.
“When you talk about hot spots, these are still minority communities,” Gerard Claiborne, 49, whose barbershop is in a predominantly Black neighborhood told the Times. “I can’t say his plan won’t work. But it’s a bigger fix that’s needed.”
Black Lives Matter and Defund the Police movements sought to reduce police focus on minority communities, but hot spots do just the opposite.
“Hot spot policing is a polarizing subject, particularly in communities of color,” Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia told the Times. “Nothing was working — we’re on to something that seems to be working.”
Violent crime has dropped 6% and homicides have slightly slowed, according to the report.
“Dallas stands out for the amount of investment that the local government is putting into the department,” Major Cities Chiefs Association Executive Director Laura Cooper told the Times.