"More policing probably means more violence."
A dangerously misguided phrase recently uttered by MSNBC's Joy Reid while interviewing Medium's Michelle Kim.
Perpetuating a Narrative
While discussing how best to keep members of the Asian community protected from hate crimes, Reid threw the question of increased policing to Kim.
“Because the downside to more policing means that police can then maybe target the same communities. Because a lot of Asian communities are not—are struggling communities. Because more policing probably means more violence. Is that the answer?”MSNBC Joy Reid
Kim jumped on board with Reid's direction. She confidently stated that she does not believe "policing is the answer."
Kim's commentary did not stop there. However, she furthered the sentiment by adding kudos for those joining forces with " anti-policing activists" and further pushed "community-based interventions."
Both Reid and Kim are happy to further anti-police sentiment to push their own anti-law enforcement agendas.
Kim cited a singular incident of Christian Hall, a 19-year old who officers shot in the midst of a mental-health crisis.
Kim uses this incident as her reason for having fewer police around to protect their "elders and our community."
Conflicting Experiences vs. Studies
Instead, studies prove time and time again that more police officers have a larger effect on lowering crime statistics. In areas where there were fewer officers, crime numbers soared.
Florida State University's Jonathon Klick and George Mason University's Alexander Tabarrok studied police effect on crime by using terror alert levels. They concluded that when police presence raises by 50 percent, crime goes down by 15 percent.
John Jay College of Criminal Justice professor David Kennedy believes the issues are more complicated.
In the opinion article he wrote for the LA Times, he states that minority neighborhoods are both underserved and overserved.
Kennedy points to more of a community oriented approach having better results in the reduction of crime. However, even he does not state that less is the answer.
Despite the recent negative media attention, police officers have a positive effect on crime in our communities. We need more quality policing to stem the violence, not less.
Our communities need to know someone has their backs and can stand between them and criminals. Reducing officers in neighborhoods will lead to additional violence, leaving citizens feeling vulnerable and unprotected.