December 31, 2005


Crime Numbers Keep Dropping Across the City (AL BAKER, 12/31/05, NY Times)

Crime has fallen across New York City for the 17th consecutive year, with subway crime down by more than 5 percent from last year and the number of recorded murders virtually certain to be the fewest in any single year since 1963, new Police Department statistics show.

Just one more way that America is diverging from the former West.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 31, 2005 9:16 AM

In Canada, Toronto has achieved its age-old dream of becoming like New York City - only they have become the pre-Giuliani New York City, with gun battles blazing through the downtown streets like in Dodge of the 1800's. With a socialist mayor blaming the US for this rise in crime, you can rest assured the problem will not be solved until a Candian Rudy gets elected there. But don't hold your breath. Torontonians are willing to sacrifice innocent bystanders, rather than admit their Leftist philosophy is responsibe for these murders.

Posted by: obc at December 31, 2005 12:25 PM

1963? Wasn't that when the Dick Van Dyke show was on? Geez.

Posted by: RC at December 31, 2005 3:13 PM

Like the Population Bomb and Global Cooling, that by now our cities would become lawless Forbidden Zones is another prediction the "futurists" (and Hollywood) got wrong. (Although they did seem to get the self-mutilation and clothing styles more right than wrong.)

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at December 31, 2005 5:18 PM

I just received a Christmas gift... a book titled Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner.

In the book they analyze the numbers for the crime drop in New York (and elsewhere) and play out various scenarios - including "innovative police work", "Changes in the crack market", "Aging of the population" and all other explanations (increased use of capital punishment, concealed-weapons laws, gun buybacks and others).

They also discuss the one factor that has had the biggest impact on reducing crime but has had little or no coverage in the press. It all started with - Roe v. Wade (1973), but it took 20 years (one generation) for the effect to take place.

Some people will find the conclusions shocking and go into denial, others will find that they raises moral and social issues that we simply don't like numbers being applied to.

Roe v. Wade was the Supreme Court decision that allowed legalized abortion throughout America. Regardless of our moral position on abortion it seems only logical that a fetus that is aborted is also one less child that is unwanted.

Children grow up, and when they grow up being unwanted it is quite often a recipe for criminal involvement. Some 20 years later legalized abortion correlates as the most influencial factor for the reduction in crime.

Is this just too controversial for newspapers to publish?

Ed cannell,
Vancouver, Canada

Posted by: Edward Cannell at January 2, 2006 2:55 PM

Mr. Cannell:

it's been covered ad nauseum.

The problem is that as a genberal point it's a truism: kill everyone under 65 and you'd be rid of crime, it's a young people's pursuit. Meanwhile, as a particular point, it doesn't appear abortion affected rates much:

Posted by: oj at January 2, 2006 4:13 PM