Whose Order?

The Story

A New York State assembly member from lower Manhattan was harassed by street vendors outside a subway station, and when she asked the police to do something about it, they told her that there was nothing to be done. Yuh-Line Niou, the elected official, was shocked, but she shouldn’t be: she has sponsored and supported legislation that limits the ability of cops and prosecutors to lock up street criminals, and she wants the city to eliminate its jail system. The incident helps illustrate the hypocrisy of New York public officials who are calling for dramatic criminal-justice reforms.

The Facts You Need to Know

  1. Loitering: Niou has sponsored a bill to repeal anti-loitering laws, but her own experience demonstrates that loitering is rightly regarded as a public nuisance. Read more.

  2. Broken Windows: Progressive politicians like Niou condemn Broken Windows policing–until they need it, as she recently did. Read more.

  3. Disorder: When police don’t arrest miscreants, public spaces become disorderly and unpleasant. Read more.

“The increasingly widespread view that community policing and order-maintenance efforts are at odds represents a fundamental misunderstanding.”

George Kelling

Twitter Take

The Past is Present

Revival in the Ruins By Stephanie Gutmann (Spring 1993)

“EBC has involved itself with projects as mundane as moving a bus stop so that women are safer when walking home at night, and as elaborate as turning a huge swath of empty, rubble-strewn land into a 2,300-home suburb.”

And in other news...

“The MTA’s wishlist for the next two decades — covering everything from new subway cars to eventual subway expansion — likely won’t be made public until the end of the year, officials said Thursday. That would make it more than a year late.”