New York Times writer German Lopez suggested readers should be optimistic about a 4% decline in murders over the past year after the murder rate rose nearly 40% in the years prior.
The spike in violence in recent years was triggered by COVID-19 policies including school closures and shutting down social services, as well as by less effective policing in the wake of George Floyd’s death, according to the NYT, and distance from these events could drive a downward trend in violence. But the murder rate is still significantly higher than it was prior to 2020 after surging nearly 30% that year.
The media’s reluctance to report the 4% decline in murders shows a bias toward bad news that makes Americans think crime is worse than it really is, Lopez argued, adding that this bias contributes to voters favoring stronger criminal justice policies. Lopez also speculated that the media’s emphasis on crime could make Americans think criminal justice reform was causing a spike in crime, which he said is incorrect. (RELATED: ‘Never Seen Anything Like It’: LA Residents Rattled As Violent Crime Finally Seeps Into Wealthy Neighborhoods)
FBI: Murder increased 29.4% in the United States in 2020 compared to previous year
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) September 27, 2021
The murder rate increased by 29.4% to a 20-year high in 2020, according to FBI data, and continued to rise throughout 2021. It’s stillsignificantly higher than it was three years ago, Jeff Asher, co-founder of AH Datalytics, told the NYT.
The rising murder rate was especially visible in large cities, many of which saw historic surges in murders beginning in 2020. During Memorial Day weekend 2022 alone, 30 people were killed and more than 100 were injured in major cities during weekend violence, including women and children.
Police funding and tactics were a central focus for politicians and activists that year in the wake of George Floyd’s death and the ensuing protests, and leaders of several Democrat-led cities significantly cut police funding in 2020.
Some have attributed the murder and violent crime surge to a lack of funding for police departments, including former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.
The NYT did not respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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