Of all the most discouraging aspects of the breakdown of civilization we have been living through the single worst was the orgy of violence and destruction that the Blue State and City governors and mayors unleashed on their cities. Forcing the police to stand down and allow the mobs to terrorize and victimize the innocent people of these places was horrifying. And the consequence of this decision has been the ascension of criminal urban gangs to dominance over the streets of these cities. The consequences of this have been unsustainable for law-abiding people trying to raise families and make a living. Businesses are subject to random and overwhelming attack by mobs of smash and grab thugs stealing everything of value and threatening violence or even shooting and killing the patrons and employees of businesses. And every city dweller is subject to random violence at any time.
This state of affairs is similar to what went on during the Middle Ages when marauders and pirates would descend on a coastal town and rape and pillage and burn whatever they wanted to, leaving the inhabitants terrorized and devastated. The threat was only finally ended when the local nobles figured out that building walled towns and recruiting a standing army was the only way to defeat the Viking incursions.
Now we already know that the only way to suppress crime is to have a strong and effective criminal justice system. You need a professional police force and a carefully calibrated court and prison system. It can be neither too draconian nor too lax. Too strong and the citizens will feel enslaved, too weak and the criminals will rampage across the countryside. But once you break that system you can’t just click a switch and reactivate it. It will require an effort and a conscious decision by both the government and the people. By necessity the people will have to empower a champion whose job it will be to reconquer the areas that have fallen to the barbarians. And that will of necessity require that the actions be severe and possibly exaggerated. Death penalties may have to reappear in order to make an example of the worst offenders. But none of this will happen until the people despair of fixing things by half measures. The police won’t take the risk of prosecution for using deadly force unless the people signal their desperation and their clear agreement to the use of drastic measures.
I do not imagine we are anywhere near this point yet. Idiots like the mayor of San Francisco will talk about empowering the police to stop crime an restore order. All that talk is just noise. It means nothing. Even Eric Adams who was elected in New York to be a law-and-order mayor has already signaled by his choice of a black woman diversity candidate for police commissioner that any talk of law and order will be lip service. I’ve often facetiously talked about cannibalism breaking out in the blue cities. Well, it may be a joke but I think things will have to get a lot worse before they get better. Maybe once some billionaire has his child kidnapped for ransom the rich people will realize how close to third world banana republic we’ve sunk. Or maybe a gang lord will shoot up a school yard and the sight of fifty dead kids will bring people to their senses.
But whatever the exact circumstance, I think it will be crime that finally snaps this country out of its stupor. When that happens whoever has the courage to lead that crusade will find enormous leverage to make big changes to our government. And hopefully he’ll be smart and wise enough to make them.