Once upon a time Seattle was one of my favorite cities in the world. Situated as it is beside the beauty of Puget Sound with the Cascades in one direction and the majesty of the Olympic Peninsula in the other, it is placed in one of the world’s most beautiful locations. The climate also is enviable, never too cold, never too hot, perhaps a bit damp but nothing compared to the nearby rain forests. Wandering through Pike Place market was a magical experience then.
Not anymore. Seattle has gone mad, lost to the inherently irrational “progressive” agenda that is raging across the United States. Nothing makes sense. Nothing is logical. It is as if the madness of Alice’s Wonderland had come to life all around you.
Witness the ongoing consideration of a bill by the Seattle City Council, which will make it impossible for the city to prosecute “crimes of poverty.” If approved, the ordinance would excuse and dismiss, effectively legalizing, misdemeanor crimes committed by any offender who could show:
- Symptoms of drug addiction. No medical diagnosis necessary.
- Symptoms of a mental disorder.
- Poverty and that the crime was committed to meet an “immediate and basic need.”
So, if this ordinance becomes law in Seattle and you are a junkie you will be handed what is, in effect, a get out of jail free card for any misdemeanor you desire to commit. If you are clean and straight and sober but don’t have a job and decide you need to walk out of the local supermarket with an armload of steaks and a case of Coke, you skate. And, if you have a mental disorder all bets are off. Commit whatever misdemeanor you want.
Scott Lindsay, the former public safety advisor for Seattle, had this to say. “I’m not aware of any legislation like this anywhere in the United States (or) even globally. All cities have criminal codes to protect their citizens from criminal acts. This would essentially create a legal loophole that swallows all those codes and creates a green light for crime.”
“If you don’t feel very protected right now, this would wipe out almost all remaining protections that we have,” Lindsay added. “This would absolutely open the floodgates for crime in Seattle, even worse than what we often currently struggle with,” Lindsay said. “It’s basically a blank check for anybody committing theft, assault, harassment (and) trespass to continue without disruption from our criminal justice system.”
Christopher Rufo, writing for the Seattle City Journal, had this to add about the impact of this proposed ordinance. “On a practical level, if this ordinance becomes law, it will effectively legalize an entire spectrum of misdemeanor crimes, including theft, assault, harassment, drug possession, property destruction, and indecent exposure… The impact of this measure would be enormous. In 2019, the Seattle Police Department reported 25,993 thefts, 8,442 assaults, 6,430 property offenses, 4,194 frauds, 3,910 trespasses, and 1,640 narcotics violations—representing 72 percent of all reported crimes. If the ordinance passes, nearly all these crimes would be permitted under law.”
In short, this is not an attempt to work around the edges of the criminal justice system. This is a proposal to gut it and effectively legalize most of the crime that occurs in the city. The proponents of this measure believe that the “system” is inherently racist and oppressive. They don’t think men and women who prey on law abiding citizens are criminals who deserve punishment. They don’t even think of them as drunks or drug addicts who should be put in rehab and forced to deal with their substance abuse problems.
No, these individuals are victims. They have been abused by an evil capitalist, democratic system and they have been forced to engage in criminal activity by that system. The man who knocks you down and takes your purse is not a thug. He is a hero fighting back against the “man.” The guy exposing himself and urinating on the sidewalk is not a drunk or even someone who needs to be compelled to undergo treatment for a mental health disorder. He is, instead, at the vanguard of the new society we must build.
A rational person would say this is madness. He or she would predict that the city will rapidly become unlivable, not that it is not already well on its way. He or she might also note that empowering criminals, the mentally ill and those whose lives are ruled by drugs to steal from convenience stores, expose themselves in public and assault fellow citizens is hardly a prescription for moving those people off the street and turning them into productive members of society.
It doesn’t matter. Rationality has no place in this. This is Seattle. Welcome to crazy town.