Coming To A Democrat City Near You: Excusing Crimes Due To “Poverty”

Exactly where does poverty stop in Liberal World? What’s the threshold? And doing this while defunding the police

The New Untouchables

In October, the Seattle City Council floated legislation to provide an exemption from prosecution for misdemeanor crimes for any citizen who suffers from poverty, homelessness, addiction, or mental illness. Under the proposed ordinance, courts would have to dismiss all so-called “crimes of poverty”—which, according to the city’s former public-safety advisor, would cover more than 90 percent of all misdemeanor cases citywide. In effect, the legislation would create a new class of “untouchables,” protected from consequences by the city’s powerbrokers.

This is the latest and most brazen effort in the city’s campaign to establish what might be called a “reverse hierarchy of oppression.” The underlying theory is that society has condemned the lower class to a life of poverty and stigma, which leads to addiction, madness, and indigence. The poor, in the logic of Seattle’s progressive elites, are thus forced to commit crimes—including violent crimes—to secure their very existence. Therefore, as society is the perpetrator of this inequality, the crimes of the poor must be forgiven. The crimes are transformed into an expression of social justice.

On a practical level, if this ordinance becomes law, it will effectively legalize an entire spectrum of misdemeanor crimes, including theft, assault, harassment, drug possession, property destruction, and indecent exposure. Criminals must simply establish that they have an addiction, mental-health disorder, or low income in order to evade justice. The impact of this measure would be enormous. In 2019, the Seattle Police Department reported 25,993 thefts, 8,442 assaults, 6,430 property offenses, 4,194 frauds, 3,910 trespasses, and 1,640 narcotics violations—representing 72 percent of all reported crimes. If the ordinance passes, nearly all these crimes would be permitted under law.

Will Seattle do this? Why not, they have pushed through some defunding of the police, and the courts routinely blow off crimes and release the criminals. We have seen this to a smaller degree in many other cities, where crime is excused

Anyone else see the problem here? And all these uber-Progressives in Seattle, San Francisco, etc, who think these policies are great are fine with people stealing their own stuff, assaulting them, and so forth, right? They never call law enforcement, right?

Lisa Herbold, the city councilwoman who proposed the legislation, must have known that it would be controversial. Though she chairs the council’s Public Safety Committee, she attempted to launder the ordinance through the budgetary process, under the justification that it would reduce the cost of court proceedings and jail usage. During a five-minute presentation buried in an hours-long budget hearing, Herbold framed her argument in social justice terms, claiming that “poverty, institutionalized racism, and systemic oppression are root causes that lead to mass incarceration” and that “punishment and incarceration are harmful and ineffective tools to address behaviors triggered by poverty and illness.” Neither questions from other councilmembers nor public comment was permitted.

The law was tabled from the budget hearings, and scheduled later for the Public Safety Committee. Because Liberals will never give up once they have an idea, and their political cult has created the talking points to make things like this not only possible, by necessary.

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4 Responses to “Coming To A Democrat City Near You: Excusing Crimes Due To “Poverty””

  1. Hairy says:

    Why Teach do you choose to work in a Dem city

    • President Elect Kye says:

      Perhaps because that’s where his job is at and he does not yet have the money to move. Happened to me when I was stuck in filthy, corrupt Philly.

  2. Dana says:

    What if these ‘crimes of poverty’ would have the effect of making the crime victim poor?

    Most crime victims are from the same economic stratum as the criminals.

    • Professor Hale says:

      You don’t have to guess how this turns out. Just look at any low-trust third world country. All transactions are in cash. All merchandise is behind plexiglass until paid for. Number of customers allowed in the store is limited. Bars on every window. No large store windows anymore. No Walmarts, Costcos, Lowes, or anywhere else that has large stacks of anything for sale. And the Black market is the only really free enterprise after the local officials come by and collect their “taxes”, “license fees” and “protection money”.

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