Dr. John Lott has a new piece at National Review that responds to a recent op-ed that Heather Mac Donald had in the Wall Street Journal where she blamed Chicago’s crime problems on President Obama’s policies.
Last week, President Donald Trump again expressed concern that the violence in Chicago was “totally out of control.” “We’re going to have to do something about Chicago,” the president said. While it’s unclear what Trump has in mind, it is undoubtedly true that the Chicago police department is a mess, with the city suffering ever increasing murder rates.
Some analysts, such as Heather Mac Donald in the Wall Street Journal, focus on the damage created by President Obama trying to run local police departments via the U.S. Justice Department, but the problems facing Chicago go well beyond that and certainly aren’t new.
The quality of Chicago’s policing has been deteriorating for decades. Back in 1991, 67 percent of murderers were arrested. When Mayor Richard M. Daley finally left office 20 years later, in 2011, the arrest rate was down to 30 percent. This troubling drop only continued after Rahm Emanuel became mayor, hitting a new low of 20 percent in 2016.
Unfortunately, the true figure is even worse, because Chicago has been intentionally misclassifying murders as non-murders.
Nationally, in 2015, 61.5 percent of murders resulted in an arrest — almost two out of every three. And unlike Chicago’s arrest rate, the national rate has been fairly constant over the decades. . . . .
The rest of the piece is available here.