A recent bill to amend the criminal code was withdrawn by the D.C. city council, which is a win for law and order. President Joseph Biden and the Republican-controlled House of Representatives vehemently opposed the bill, which would have lessened the penalties for carjacking, illegal gun ownership, and other felonies.
The high-profile nature of some of these crimes has prompted the need for stricter police enforcement measures in D.C. as crime has increased in recent years. The council’s reform proposal, however, would have made it more difficult to punish criminals and ultimately might have increased crime.
Charles Allen, a council member, shot down those who said that the bill was required to combat structural racism in the criminal justice system. He noted that while there are a large number of black offenders in D.C., there are also a large number of black victims. Consequently, lowering criminal punishments would not solve the city’s actual crime problem.
Given the hostility the bill is facing, Allen is correct to drop it. To keep our streets safe, criminals need to face harsher consequences, therefore any legislation that makes it harder for us to punish them is harmful to everyone’s safety.