Steve Doocy and company over at Fox & Friends are proving they can still say appallingly stupid things, even without Elizabeth Hasselbeck to fuel the fires.
This morning, they tried to mount a defense of Donald Trump’s claims about the supposed effectiveness of stop-and-frisk and New York City’s crime rate. In a few short minutes, the Fox gang showed there was no conservative trope they were not willing to push.
Let’s look at some of the claims made by Doocy & Company:
STEVE DOOCY: I think the whole thing about crime and lawlessness that started the conversation was about stop-and-frisk. And [Donald Trump] was making the case that in New York when Rudy Giuliani was doing it, crime went down, which is absolutely true.
Politifact pointed out back in 2007 that no, this is not absolutely true. Yes, crime rates fell, but there are important caveats:
- Violent crime in New York began falling three years before Giuliani took office in 1994, U.S. Justice Department records show. Property crime began falling four years before. The decline accelerated during his administration, but the “turnaround” he claims credit for started before him.
- New York was no anomaly, but was part of a trend that saw crime fall sharply nationwide in the 1990s, particularly in big cities. The city with the best record for reducing violent crime during this period? San Francisco.
- Independent studies generally have failed to link the tactics of the Giuliani administration with the large decrease in crime rates.
In addition, J. Peter Donald, Assistant Commissioner for Communication & Public Information for the NYPD tweeted a fact-check of Trump’s debate claims about the success of stop-and-frisk:
Stop question & frisk has decreased nearly 97% in NYC since '11. Crime, murder, & shootings have decreased significantly during same period
— J. Peter Donald (@JPeterDonald) September 27, 2016
He further pointed out that “Additionally, #NYC is on pace to have one of the safest years on record for crime. Murders, shootings are ⬇️ significantly.”
None of this stopped Doocy & Company from pushing their absurd claims, in line with the Fox News bubble but not with our shared reality:
DAVID WEBB: The numbers are there, we went from about 2,200 murders down to about 500. The other part of that is stop, question, and frisk actually benefits the poorer communities. The communities that benefitted because the policing occurs in those communities, they benefit. A grandmother can now walk —
DOOCY: But they say it’s racial profiling.
WEBB: No, it’s not. Criminal profiling, we’ve talked about this before, is different from racial profiling. Criminal profiling, perfectly lawful, upheld in 1968, Terry v. Cook, stop and frisk is the constitutional, the law of the land. Lester Holt was completely wrong in how he classified what happened with Judge Scheindlin, who declared the practice unconstitutional, but not the law. And by the way, that was then fought, and the case wasn’t taken up again.
Actually, it IS racial profiling. Politifact also reported that “a 1999 study by the New York Attorney General’s Office found that “Stop and Frisk” was unevenly applied — minorities were stopped disproportionately.”
After this, things just turned childish, which, is at least entirely in consistent with the tone of the Trump campaign:
BRIAN KILMEADE: And she’s a cop-resenting judge, and everyone knows it.
The other thing that came out is that [Hillary Clinton is] also is saying that we (added space)have an implicit bias as Americans, and that we’re going to retrain law enforcement. Really?
WEBB: OK, let’s take this farce called “implicit bias” and “white privilege.” That’s exactly what it is. It’s kind of saying, “I go to sleep, and suddenly I wake up and I have an implicit bias I didn’t know I had this before.”
KILMEADE: No, you came out of the womb that way, that’s what she’s saying.
WEBB: And you can acquire it at any time. This thing is like allergies, apparently it can happen at any time. Difference is allergies, you know you have an issue. Implicit bias is simply a political issue, it’s a wedge that they use. It’s this safe-space crowd, it’s this whole we need to pad the walls for everyone.
DOOCY: Is this just to get out the vote?
WEBB: Yes. The answer is yes.
According to Fox & Friends, talking about a very real bias against minorities is “just to get out the vote.” Naturally, we cannot argue that it is to begin a dialogue that will lead to improving the condition of minorities in our country, because that would be admitting racism exists in the first place, and Fox News has long since revealed that it is Barack Obama who is responsible for racism.
Unable to face a truth they cannot admit to, because it would pop their reality bubble, the gang at Fox & Friends are forced to revert to childishness, lies, and mockery of facts instead. Anything to avoid discussing actual problems. After all, why do that when they can push Trump’s invented problems instead?
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.