The normalization of random neighborhood assaults
Thursday morning, on Nov. 3, 2022, I listened to the 1010 WINS radio station, here in New York City.
The extent to which New York’s gubernatorial candidates were focusing on crime was the topic. Then the morning host made a statement about the average citizen’s so-called "frantic" concern about crime. She completed her statement with the words “even if the numbers don’t’ line up.”
Friday morning, on Nov. 4, again over the airwaves from 1010 WINS, I learned that a female runner was raped at approximately 6 a.m. the day before, during her run. The morning host then said that the criminal perpetrator was a repeat offender.
Usually, this dynamic of one day acknowledging the concrete facts about a dangerous environment, and another day minimizing any risks from that same environment, is what psychologists observe is something seen in the home of an abusive family.
What is mind-boggling is that this very same abusive seesaw dynamic is now being pushed by the media – the purported marketers of facts -- on the matter of rising crime around the country.
The burying of facts and the wielding of emotional manipulation is done within abusive relationships. Abusive relationships, by their very nature, distort facts and confuse the person involved.
But why are we all experiencing abusive fact distortion about crime in our daily lives by those who don’t even know us? Why are these distortions then catching on and being belted out in song, like the chorus of T.V. advertising jingle?
Burying the facts kills any chance for getting help. This is innate knowledge. You cannot help the wounded pedestrian if you can’t describe his appearance and give his location during the emergency call for help. Same for catching the criminal. The police need a person’s description and location of the incident. On crime, the facts need to be laid out accurately.
Distorting the facts, as in “even if the numbers don’t add up” or the excuse “Crime? Really, it’s the economy causing stress,” compounds the harm.
First, this distortion, nostalgically known as a lie, is crazy-making for everyone affected by crime. Imagine being punched in the head by some random stranger and then having a friend tell you that the real estate market is the culprit. Just as we rely on traffic lights and lines in the streets to guide us, or rely on the time of day to determine our activity, we rely on reactions that match actions. Today, reactions are paired with actions in a mismatched, Orwellian “Love is Hate” manner. The foundation of right and wrong, punishment and reward, is broken.
Here are some examples of how this is happening:
Crime and No Punishment
From ages two to ninety-two, people (and animals) instinctively know that consequences are the main ingredient of prevention. All living creatures, big and small, are motivated to execute certain actions and refrain from executing other actions based solely on the resulting consequences these choices will yield.
Anyone who relays unpopular facts or unwanted personal experience is scolded with statistics. Exposure is allowing the problem to be visible, no longer creating excuses or excess events, a.k.a, noise to make the problem blend in with the scenery. The direct, rational person sees exposure as practical. Others somehow tell us that exposure is intrusive and discriminating. The productive person wants to name the problem because giving it a name means there is a specific point of reference for discussion and intervention. Others somehow tell us that naming is a derogatory putdown, a label type of branding done for the purpose of shaming. Deliberate action, to a person who wants to solve the problem, allows him to implement a possible, if not probable, solution. Some others tell us such actions are insulting, stifling of free expression.
Emotions are the new weapons of murderers. Wielding self-righteous shame against anyone who dare say that violent criminals should be locked up-regardless of their socio-economic status and independent of facts outside of the scope of having committed the crime knowingly, is murdering our liberty and freedom.
Muddling through the battleground streets of what once felt like a safe neighborhood, is the death of peaceful enjoyment. Being ridiculed for failing to display mandatory sympathy for violent thugs is a killing of free expression. Dismantling police is a murdering our safety, murdering our way of life and inevitably, us -- the vigilant non-violent. Talking about criminals in any other way than sympathetic is deemed as arrogant prejudice. Believing in a baseline of safety and peaceful enjoyment is the new thoughtcrime. If we delete the expectation of walking in our neighborhoods without being assaulted by strangers, along with any expectations of violent criminals being arrested and jailed and our right to the facts of what is taking place, then our American way of life will factually become another fatality of 2022.
Image: Pixabay / Pixabay License