Ezra Klein is trying to warn Democrats during the George Floyd Memorial Orgies that the huge increase in shootings over the last year does not bode well for Democratic politicians:
First, violent crimes supercharges inequality. Families who can flee, do. Business close or never open. Banks won’t make loans. Property values plummet. Children are traumatized, with lifelong impacts on stress and cognition.— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) May 21, 2021
(@patrick_sharkey's work is great on this.)
Ezra’s word “spiking” implies that violent crime will eventually go down as fast as it went up.
That would be nice, but so far there’s no evidence of the second part of “spiking” is happening. Instead, increase in shootings looks more like a plateau. Here’s my graph of Gun Violence Archive data of all the gun murders in 2019 (blue) and 2020 (red).
Yet, the most extraordinary fact of 2020 is that for the seven-plus months from George Floyd’s death to the end of the year, the United States averaged 50.5 murders per day, up 41% from the 35.7 per day during the same long period in 2019. The consistency of the gap between 2020 and 2019 during the Racial Reckoning is striking.
You are probably as sick as I am of hearing journalists proclaim this or that to be the New Normal. Let’s hope that fifty murders per day during the warmer months is not Anti-Racist America’s new normal.