Matt McDaniel

3 minute read

Hand-holding and hashtags aren’t going to make anyone safer.

Feigned outrage doesn’t stop bullets. Saying “please” doesn’t change the mind of criminals.Remember: talk is cheap. Virtue signaling has become the easiest way to do nothing.

Want some solutions instead of social justice pabulum? Here are five to start:

  1. Elect Politicians with Backbone: Call out criminals. Demand that the State’s Attorney’s Office not drop charges related to crimes in the community. Sure, the judges may not be accountable to the people of the City, but the State’s Attorney is. Politicians need to use their influence and exert political pressure on prosecutors to not slap criminals on the wrist for terrorizing the community. Show up at every hearing. Give impact statements.

  2. Enforce the Law: Support the police. Unequivocally. No “buts.” They are the thin blue line between order and anarchy. Say it publicly. Say it frequently. Likewise, cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to deport illegal aliens. This is the law, but also, in failing to enforce it, you run the risk of losing out on significant resources and federal aid. We shouldn’t have to deal with rising crime because politicians want to score points for future political offices.

  3. Fewer Bad Guys with Guns: Take away discretion for judges to give lenient sentences to violent offenders and offenses where an illegal gun is recovered. While the law would need to be changed at a State level, there is nothing preventing prosecutors from taking a harder line on crime, immediately.

  4. Identify Criminals: Shut down the paths that criminals are using to get into our community. Public-private camera partnerships with a central server database and a private support firm to monitor the data is a great start. Creating a crime notification app with camera locations—a police and a private version—could get vital data to police and help solve crimes. Add on gating alleys and motion-detecting lights with highly visible cameras. Find out where the criminals are coming from and make it easier for police to track down ringleaders and make arrests.

  5. More Good Guys with Guns: A troop surge is sometimes necessary. Police are spread thin, but there are some areas that must be, and remain, crime-free. The battle lines have been creeping, insidiously closer and closer to covering the whole City map in a warzone. It’s also necessary for people to be able to defend themselves. We know that the police can’t be everywhere at once. Maryland has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation, yet bad guys are still walking the streets brandishing guns. We need common sense in gun laws that allow well-trained private citizens the ability to defend themselves. Given that Baltimore’s unconstitutional ban on tasers has been lifted, perhaps this is an effective compromise for individuals leery of gun ownership.

These are just five of many, many ideas that would immediately make the community safer. We don’t have a generation to wait. Whether it’s naiveté or willful blindness, the City’s elected leaders are continuing on a disastrous track. If the ship isn’t righted, and soon, you will know exactly who’s to blame.