The following exchange occurred between Alisyn Camerota, CNN anchor, and Lisa Bender, Minneapolis City Council President:
CAMEROTA: “What if in the middle of the night my home is broken into. Who do I call?”
BENDER: “Yes, I hear that loud and clear from a lot of my neighbors. And I know — and myself, too, and I know that that comes from a place of privilege.”
When I first read this, my reaction was that the privilege comes at a price. People pay taxes for the police to protect the community at large. Those who work pay more in taxes for the privilege than those who don’t. Nevertheless, the privilege is spread across the entirety of the community regardless of what someone does or does not pay in taxes. Lisa Bender has disconnected privilege from taxes – and the work and wealth creation that goes into paying them.
The next thing that occurred to me was what happens if that policing privilege is reduced or eliminated. In modern America, people deprived of security hire private security forces. Some live in gated communities. The inequity involved in eliminating the police is that the poorest of the citizenry are deprived of safety and security because they can’t afford to buy it. Lisa Bender is advocating for a more unsafe and insecure city.
The rule of law is enshrined in constitutional principles. The law of arbitrary monarchy, or worse, the law of the jungle has therefore been neutralized in both theory and general practice. Whether she knows it or not, Lisa Bender plans to segregate individual communities under a patchwork of different criminal and civil laws. This is a “legal” bias that is intended to, but will not, placate those who have a multitude of divergent grievances against the constitutional rule of law for all.
An important aspect of professional policing is that it provides a basis for community and business risk assessment. Businesses chose locations based on risk and reward. People accept employment and seek housing based on risk and reward. Insurance companies insure based on risk. Lisa Bender is choosing a path where risks are unknown at best and likely greater. That translates into very high costs of doing business and loss of prosperity for Minneapolis.
There are numerous examples of societies where lawlessness was the order of the day. In the old west, when law enforcement came to the town it was often a mark of advancing civilization and a repudiation of outlaws who would just appear, do damage, and then escape unaccountable. Lisa Bender apparently thinks that violence is somehow going to decrease when you eliminate the police.
Police Forces in America are a relatively new phenomenon. As the nation and its cities grew, public order associated with economic prosperity and political interests led inexorably to changes in the concepts of societal control. Policing in Colonial America had been very informal, and based on a for-profit, privately funded system that employed people part-time. Small towns often relied on a “night watch” in which volunteers signed up for a certain day and time. From these lowly and disorganized attempts at law enforcement rose the modern professional police force. Lisa Bender apparently want to return to the “good old” pre-police days.
Needless to say, Lisa Bender and her band of merry Minneapolis City Council members intends to create a situation where there will be no policing and no commonality of law enforcement. Apparently, she thinks the illusion of safety and security is the same as the reality of safety and security. To be blunt, she is wrong.