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OPINION WONDER LAND
Law and Order: It’s Back
New York City’s mayoral race is forcing the Democrats to talk about crime—again.
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Wonder Land: Democrats hate to talk about law and order. But in New York City’s mayoral race, that’s all they’re talking about. Image: Spencer Platt/Getty Images
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May 19, 2021 6:33 pm ET
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Everyone knows that if you want to make Dracula shrink back in terror, hold up a cross. Want to know how to make a Democrat gasp in horror? Say these words: “law and order.” Aaaaagh!
Everyone loves “Law and Order”—as a TV series. As real life, law and order, also known as the crime issue, doesn’t exist in the Democratic mind. It’s never a problem. Until it is. On Monday, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio ordered 250 cops into the subways to battle rampant crime on the trains and platforms.
When Mr. de Blasio was elected mayor in 2013, he inherited decades of urban calm from Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg and their anticrime police commissioners, Bill Bratton and Ray Kelly. One of the biggest issues in the 2013 campaign was whether to ban horse-drawn carriages in Central Park.
Eight years later, the Democratic primary race to succeed Mr. de Blasio is suddenly about those three Democratic denial words: law and order. The June 22 primary effectively selects the next mayor.
New Yorkers have spent the past year beaten down both by Covid and crime. For Covid they’ve got vaccinations. For the city’s epidemic of shootings, up over last year by some 80%, they’ve got nearly nothing. In a city brimming with progressive politicians and street activists, the police have been targeted as the enemy.
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