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Horowitz: Pro-criminal organizations blocking Georgia Gov. Kemp’s anti-gang bill

Just how powerful is the “criminal justice reform” movement in our political scene? Well, not only is Kim Kardashian directing criminal justice policy at the White House, but every state has a cadre of well-monied organizations vouching for criminals and leaving forgotten law-abiding Americans behind to deal with the carnage. What’s most offensive is that they are using racial pandering to push pro-criminal ideas that actually harm African-Americans more than anyone. Nowhere is this more evident than in Georgia Governor Brian Kemp’s fight for anti-gang legislation.

While many GOP governors are joining with the Soros Democrats to push weak-on-crime laws, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp is headed in the opposite direction. He understands, as Reagan did, that “criminal justice reform” means focusing on victims of crime and public safety. During his State of the State address in January, he pledged to introduce anti-gang legislation to combat the growing gang violence in metro Atlanta, an area that is experiencing an increase in both violent and property crimes.

With support of the governor and state attorney general, one would think that toughening sentencing on gang members would be a no-brainer in a state like Georgia. After all, Republicans enjoy a 103-75 majority in the House and a 35-21 majority in the Senate. But RINOs in the House joined with left-wing pro-gang organizations to gut the governor’s bill, H.B. 994, before it could pass committee. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that activist groups convinced some House Republicans to gut the bill and force amendments at a hearing last week.

Under the original proposal from the governor, juveniles who commit violent crimes as gang members would be charged as adults; gang members who commit crimes in multiple jurisdictions would be tried for all crimes in one county; and those who committed murder as gang members would be eligible for the death penalty upon conviction. All of those provisions were stripped from the bill.

Evidently, the deep concern of jailbreak advocates for “low-level, nonviolent offenders” has now transmogrified to advocacy for the most violent gang members. Much of the murder and mayhem in this country is committed by gang members, increasingly at a young age because there is no deterrent against gangs any more. Georgia has 71,000 gang members, 50,000 in the metro Atlanta area. DeKalb County experienced record murders last year, up 40 percent from the previous year, as arrest rates plummeted in the region thanks to “criminal justice reform.”

As politicians wring their hands to “do something” about mass shootings, they miss the point that most murder in this country is gang-related. Deterring violent gang members should be bipartisan, yet we can’t even get many Republicans to stand up to the de-incarceration crowd to get tougher on violent criminals.

Liberals in Georgia, just like Kim Kardashian, only care about criminals like Myliek Ryshiem Dunn, not his victims. Dunn is charged in Cobb County with gang-related murder, armed robbery, and rape of an 11-year-old. He is a juvenile, but that is no solace to his victims. They don’t deserve less justice, and society at large doesn’t deserve a lesser deterrent against juveniles capable of committing such crimes. Yet these are the people tugging at the hearts of the political activists, not the victims.

As in most states, the lack of deterrent against juveniles is a problem in Georgia. In January, I reported on an Atlanta teen who had a massive rap sheet and was not locked up who went on to allegedly rape and beat a mother of two in a park. He was offered bail even after the brutal rape.

On Friday, New York City police released a video of what appears to be a pack of several dozen violent teenagers beating one 15-year-old girl unconscious.

This is far from petty theft. Is the damage to the victim less severe and the public safety threat less potent because these grown violent perpetrators happen to be under 18?

According to the Atlanta Repeat Offender Commission, in 2017 and 2018, just 23 percent of repeat offenders arrested by Atlanta police were sentenced to any degree of confinement by Fulton County Superior Court judges — a decrease of nearly 14 percent from those sentenced in 2016. The most common sentence issued by a Fulton judge was “time served.”

The result? Atlanta police are experiencing a 22 percent increase in auto thefts this year. But rather than getting tougher on violent criminals and gangs, the bipartisan criminal lobby wants to diminish deterrent and weaken our justice system even further.

Liberals suggest you can’t arrest your way out of the gang problem, but what we are seeing across the country and in Atlanta is that you can release your way into the problem.

One last thing…
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