Crime is plaguing so many of our communities right now that it’s downright ridiculous. In particular, violent crime, which is always going to be a bigger problem.
I mean, burglaries are bad, but I think we can all agree that people shooting other people in cold blood tends to be a bit worse.
There’s a lot going on and a lot of people have their theories why. For at least one police department, the causes may not be clear, but the lack of officers to deal with the issue is just as much of a problem.
Like other communities in the D.C. area and across the nation, Montgomery County, Maryland, is facing a surge in violent crime, and it’s confronting the threat to public safety with fewer police officers.
The county council’s Public Safety Committee was briefed Monday on new crime statistics and on the available number of police officers.
Crime data for the first nine months of this year compared to the same period last year shows that the homicide rate is up more than 29%, aggravated assaults are up nearly 24% and carjackings rose more than 126%.
The committee was told that there have been 56 carjackings in the county between Jan. 1 and Nov. 12. Since December 2020, there have been average of nearly six carjackings each month.
“We’ve received a lot of correspondence on this, as we should, from constituents, who do not feel safe, and unfortunately, in some cases, they’re taking matters into their own hands. We’ve had a record number of gun purchases in Montgomery County,” said Council Vice President Gabe Albornoz.
I’m hardly surprised. When violent crime goes up, people get armed. That really just makes sense.
This is especially true when there’s a lack of police officers on the streets. Even some of the most ardent “let the police handle it” types change their minds once they realize there aren’t any police to handle it in the first place.
Not all of them, to be sure, but enough.
So, people are buying guns to protect themselves. I’m not crazy that Albornoz referred to it as “taking matters into their own hands,” though. People buying guns for self-defense is hardly the same thing as vigilantism, which is actually taking matters into your own hands. Then again, people have called Kyle Rittenhouse a vigilante and he was just defending himself, so maybe he simply doesn’t know the difference.
The thing is, Montgomery County, Maryland is hardly unique.
See, this is happening all over the nation. While not everywhere actively defunded the police, the anti-police sentiment that drove such actions was widespread. It made an impact on people remaining on the job or applying to become police officers. As a result, it’s made an impact on driving violent crime.
Now, people are being shot and killed because someone got it in their head that we’d be better off without the police.
Well, we’ve managed to get a glimpse of that world. I’m curious as to how they like it. My guess is that they’re not too fond of it.