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Exactly one police chief scheduled to discuss violent crime wave with Biden: That seems really important

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In an ostensible effort to deal with the surge in violent crime across the nation, President Joe Biden is meeting Wednesday with several city mayors and several left-wing activists but only one local law enforcement official.

That official, Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul, will stand alone in offering the president the law enforcement community’s assessment on how to correctly handle the crisis engulfing the nation from coast to coast.

The president’s lack of interest in hearing from more law enforcement officials seems to make sense given his belief that the uptick in violent crime is a consequence of there not being enough gun control.

“President Biden believes that the surge in gun violence that has affected communities across the country over the last year and a half is unacceptable, and his Administration is moving decisively to act with a whole-of-government approach as we enter the summer months when cities typically experience a spike in violence,” a White House statement published prior to Wednesday’s meeting reads.

“Today, the Biden-Harris Administration is announcing a comprehensive strategy to combat gun violence and other violent crime. This strategy implements preventative measures that are proven to reduce violent crime, and attacks the root causes – including by addressing the flow of firearms used to commit crimes,” it adds.

Notice how the administration’s discussion of the uptick’s “root causes” only speaks about firearms and not other potentially relevant factors, such as a lack of law enforcement toward low-level offenses.

The enforcement of low-level offenses matters, a group of Baltimore business owners argued in a letter to city officials earlier this month because a lack of enforcement naturally incentivizes more crime.

“[P]olice cannot be directed to ignore manifest lawlessness that happens right before their eyes. When it comes to prostitution, public urination and defecation, and the illegal sale and consumption of alcohol and illicit drugs on the streets, we know these crimes are not as serious as the carjackings, shootings, and homicides that have become routine,” the business owners wrote.

“But, as this past weekend proved, a culture of lawlessness rarely remains confined to petty offenses and invariably leads to the kinds of violence and tragedy we witnessed late Saturday night,” they added.

Their point was that the decriminalization of petty crimes was naturally incentivizing more crime, including four separate shootings that occurred only days before the letter was submitted on June 8th.

Read the letter below:

Letter to City Leaders From… by Bryna Zumer

This group of business owners was not among those invited to the White House to discuss the crime epidemic affecting blue cities like Baltimore and Chicago.

The White House’s statement concerning Wednesday’s meeting also makes no mention of violent Black Lives Matter and Antifa extremists.

Data shows that the upsurge in crime has been most prominent in blue cities like Portland, Oregon, where BLM and Antifa extremists have been most active both in terms of rioting and in terms of successfully pushing their agenda.

However, the statement does acknowledge “the need to put more police officers on the beat – with the resources, training, and accountability they need to engage in effective community policing.”

It also calls for “[h]iring law enforcement officials — even above pre-pandemic levels — or paying overtime.”

The problem is that the specific form of law enforcement that the administration appears to be seeking is law enforcement against gun rights.

The White House statement explicitly calls for more gun control “enforcement efforts,” including “prosecuting gun traffickers, rogue dealers, and other parties contributing to the supply of crime guns, as well as collaborative federal/state/local efforts to identify and address gun trafficking channels.”

Critics worry such provisions will only serve to weaken the Second Amendment while simultaneously doing nothing to ameliorate actual violent crime.

The statement calls for Congress to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, a fundamental gun rights bill that protects gun dealers and manufacturers from being held accountable for the actions of those who misuse their products.

National Shooting Sports Foundation official Lawrence G. Keane noted last year in National Review that the elimination of this fundamental law would effectively “shut down” the firearms industry.

Vivek Saxena

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