Finally, a presidential candidate is leading with a priority requirement that is to reduce crime and incarcerations in America. That isn’t how this analyst would describe the outcome, but it is getting close.
American citizens need and want a number of priority outcomes as shown in the slideshow. They are inextricably linked. That doesn’t mean sequentially as the relationships are more asymmetrical. Here is a description of what that means, but first consider what Hillary Clinton said as reported by Philip Bump of the Washington Post today.
“We need a true national debate about how to reduce our prison population while keeping our communities safe.”
Philip Bump, Washington Post
The outcome that Americans need and want is “the lowest crime rate in the world”. If we have the lowest crime rate in the world that might be truly indicative that the American political system is capable of producing the best results. Can we claim that today? The answer is no, but many people will alibi all around that claim and response.
A friend pointed to the Baltimore flashpoint and said, “You see, that is the result of ‘progressive’ policies.”
“Progressive” means championing social reform with liberal ideas. What are “liberal ideas” pertaining to the treatment of crime in America?
Let’s compare foundations:
“Liberals believe in government action to achieve equal opportunity and equality for all. It is the duty of the government to alleviate social ills and to protect civil liberties and individual and human rights. Believe the role of the government should be to guarantee that no one is in need. Liberal policies generally emphasize the need for the government to solve problems.
Conservatives believe in personal responsibility, limited government, free markets, individual liberty, traditional American values and a strong national defense. Believe the role of government should be to provide people the freedom necessary to pursue their own goals. Conservative policies generally emphasize empowerment of the individual to solve problems.”
The American political system would integrate these positions into an actionable working policy. They are not mutually exclusive when the business rules are properly defined with accompanying laws and regulations. The rules of life might be the curriculum that is instructed in schools as soon as students are able to comprehend. Parents might need remedial instruction too.
Here are some good rules to consider:
- If you break the law a little, it’s going to hurt a lot. (How can that be instructed? It begins at the earliest age in the formative years. I can remember my teachers instructing that along with my parents while I was in kindergarten.)
- If you try hard at your work, you will be respected and accepted.
- If you don’t try and deviate from your work, you will lose respect.
- If you distract and obstruct others, you will be punished severely with a loss individual freedom.
- If you are violent or harm others, you will be evaluated by medical professionals and may be committed to treatment.
- If your behavior becomes uncontrollable in the context of your family, you may be taken away and reassigned to either foster care or institutional care and treatment.
Those things are the rules of life that begin while you are young and are reinforces as you mature.
The bigger you are the harder you will fall.
If you read Philip Bump’s story and examine the data, you might note these things:
The trend toward increasing prison populations has been increasing historically. It isn’t truly a “Clinton” story as the straight line trend came before Bill Clinton and continues right on by him. It has gone down a little during the Obama years.
Correspondingly, violent crimes have been reduced dramatically.
The number of black prisoners is proportionally higher than white prisoners compared with the universe of people in those respective categories. Black persons are more impoverished than white persons might be one factor.
When the economy is good, the crime rate goes down.