New York City’s Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly – favored by local politicians to head the nation’s Department of Homeland Security but assailed by critics for the NYPD’s “stop and frisk” policy – staunchly defended the tactic for taking “tens of thousands” of weapons off the street and saving 7,383 lives.
Writing in The Wall Street Journal, the city’s top cop touted a precipitous drop in the city’s murder rate during Michael Bloomberg’s administration — from 13,212 murders in the 11 years before the Republican took office to 5,849 murders during his term.
“That’s 7,383 lives saved-and if history is a guide, they are largely the lives of young men of color,” Kelly wrote in the piece, which appeared online Monday night, adding murders are down 29 percent so far this year from 2012’s 50-year low.
But to critics, Kelly wrote, “none of this seems to much matter.” He blasted charges that the NYPD’s tactics are blatant racial profiling.
“Sidestepping the fact that these policies work, they continue to allege that massive numbers of minorities are stopped and questioned by police for no reason other than their race,” he wrote, calling the criticism “disingenuous” and “incendiary” in the wake of the Zimmerman case.
“As a city, we have to face the reality that New York’s minority communities experience a disproportionate share of violent crime,” he wrote. “To ignore that fact, as our critics would have us do, would be a form of discrimination in itself.”
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