Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell announced Thursday that she would change prosecution policies for cases involving gun violence in an attempt to ensure violent criminals face jail time.
“The revision to our plea policies recognizes that these crimes will not be tolerated in Maricopa County. Those who choose to put the residents of this county at risk by using a firearm in the commission of felony will be held accountable,” Mitchell said. “I will not let the Valley of the Sun and surrounding communities become another San Francisco or Chicago where law and order has been overlooked by prosecutors, which has caused unnecessary chaos.”
The Phoenix Police Department (PHXPD) announced that after roughly a month after the launch of “Operation Gun Crime Crackdown” (OGCC), officers seized hundreds of crime guns to reduce gun violence in the city.
“The results of this targeted effort are a great example of how working with our law enforcement partners can enhance the great work the men and women of the Phoenix Police Department do every day,” said Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams.
This is a response—and perhaps a natural one—to a human tragedy or crisis. We saw this response in the wake of 9-11. We saw it during the Covid-19 pandemic. And we’re seeing it again following three mass shootings—in Buffalo, New York, Uvalde, Texas, and Tulsa Oklahoma—that claimed the lives of more than 30 innocent people, including small children.
In the wake of recent mass shootings in New York, Texas, and Oklahoma, Democrats are once again sending Americans up a blind alley. Their “solution” is to punish millions of law-abiding gun owners for the crimes of a few evil maniacs. Undeniably, there is a certain appeal to this response. Gun control is a facile “fix” to a complex problem.
Americans have owned guns since the founding, but it wasn’t until comparatively recently that mass shootings became a concern. Guns are not the problem. Our culture is. Broken cultures produce broken human beings. For every school shooter, there are thousands of other weak, confused, mentally disturbed men who are drifting away from society. They aren’t dating, aren’t working, and they spend most of their time in their bedrooms playing video games, smoking weed, watching pornography, and stewing in social media echo chambers.
Less than 40% of Americans view the coronavirus as a top-five issue to address in 2022, a new poll shows.
The Associated Press-NORC survey found that just 33% of Americans labeled virus concerns as a top issue, down 16 points from a year ago. On the other hand, 68% of respondents said that the economy was the top issue on which to focus this year, with subtopics ranging from inflation to unemployment and the national debt.
The results come as inflation has hit a multi-decade high and supply chain bottlenecks continue to affect Americans’ lives. However, it also comes as the Omicron coronavirus variant has fueled daily case counts near record-highs, with the U.S. now averaging over 650,000 new infections per day.
I testified earlier this month at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in Chicago on underlying causes of the spikes in gun violence in that city and around the country.
Although Sen. Dick Durbin’s interruptions of my opening statement stole the show in many respects, it shouldn’t be overlooked that the Illinois Democrat also solicited disparaging remarks on the right to keep and bear arms from another witness—Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown.
In direct response to one of Durbin’s questions, Brown remarked that armed civilians make police officers’ jobs more difficult, and that he never has seen a lawfully armed civilian make a situation safer.
Gov. Tom Wolf has vetoed legislation that would have allowed residents to carry a concealed firearm without a license, claiming the measure would exacerbate gun violence in the commonwealth.
“This legislation removes the requirement that an individual obtain a license, and with it, the ability of law enforcement to conduct a background investigation,” Wolf said. “Removal of the licensing background investigation will hinder the ability of law enforcement to prevent individuals who should not be able to carry a firearm concealed from doing so.
In response to sharp increases in violent crime, President Biden stressed again last week that his administration is focused on “stemming the flow of firearms used to commit violent crimes.” But critics warn that this “guns first” approach ignores a basic fact – about 92% of violent crimes in America do not involve firearms.
Although firearms were used in about 74% of homicides in 2019, they comprise less than 9% of violent crimes in America.
The vast majority of violent offenses – including robberies, rapes and other sex crimes – almost always involve other weapons or no weapons at all.
Shortly before Christmas in 2018, a woman named Darlene voluntarily turned in a 9mm pistol to the Baltimore Police Department. It was just one of about 500 firearms the department collected that day as part of the city’s gun buyback program, which paid citizens somewhere between $25 and $500 in exchange for their firearms and high-capacity magazines.
Darlene, however, had a confession. She was turning in her 9mm, she told a local news reporter, so she could “upgrade to a better weapon.”
Like what? the reporter asked.
“I don’t know,” Darlene said. “I haven’t quite decided.”