Old: If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.
New: If you can’t do the time, Alvin Bragg will be there for you.
That much just became clear, as the newly minted Manhattan DA issued marching orders to his hundreds of assistants and support staff.
“Let’s do our very best to keep people out of jail, kids. And let’s really, really not sweat the small stuff.”
OK, Bragg didn’t actually say that — but it pretty faithfully paraphrases the guts of a staff memo
Bragg issued Monday, the first business day of his four-year term.
Specifically, Bragg says his office “will not seek a carceral sentence” for anything short of murder or deadly assault (“carceral” being progressive double-speak for prison). Also, he says minor crime won’t be prosecuted at all.
In other words, jail is to be reserved for ax murderers and their ilk; armed robbers and heavyweight drug dealers are to be minimally inconvenienced — and just forget about the quality-of-life law enforcement that was the beating heart of the Giuliani-era rescue of New York City decades ago.
Victims? Let ’em hunker down and hope for the best. No place for them in Manhattan anymore.
Soros’ biggest coup yet
And Mayor Eric Adams can just forget about his oft-promised crackdown on the city’s dangerously rising crime rates — because there is no point in picking up criminals if you have no place to put them.
Off somewhere wearing a sardonic smile must be billionaire George Soros — the arch-anarchist who’s been lavishing big bucks on progressive district attorney candidates for years now, and who kicked in a reported $1 million to Bragg’s campaign last year.
Soros-backed DAs reign in Los Angeles — where flash mobs steal property in the hundreds of millions — and in Philadelphia, a city that posted more murders than New York last year despite having one-fifth Gotham’s population.
Now Soros has hit the jackpot. Bragg holds America’s foremost local law enforcement office in terms of volume, influence and prestige. In other words, whatever it is that Soros has in mind, Bragg both owes him and is perfectly positioned to oblige him — and on the grandest stage in America. This is not a comforting thought.
Did the ’80s teach us nothing?
At first glance, Bragg wouldn’t seem to be Soros’ type.
A former state and federal prosecutor, he was brought up in Harlem during the worst of the Dinkins-era crack violence; he is, in other words, a fellow who should know better.
Back then, crack turf war-related bloodshed was endemic, and the casualties weren’t limited to dealers; mothers put their babies to bed in bathtubs to protect them from stray bullets coming through walls.
As bad as crime is today, it was far worse then — and no reasonable person would want a reprise.
And yet here is Bragg, formally instructing his small army of subordinates to disregard all the lessons learned as New York rescued itself, in the process demonstrating that crime-paralyzed cities are not inevitable.
Many lessons were learned back then, but the most important was that holding criminals accountable for their actions — swiftly and unapologetically — is key to safe streets.
Turnstile-jumping isn’t mugging, and armed robbery isn’t murder, but each in its own way is an offense against public order that simply cannot be ignored if cities are to function.
And by the way, who is Bragg — or any DA — unilaterally to decide which laws are to be enforced and which are not? Prosecutors must be allowed discretion, of course, but they don’t get to rip out whole sections of the penal code based on personal notions of what’s just and what isn’t. On a whim.
Bragg’s staff memo reeks of ignorance, arrogance and contempt for the law-abiding. It also puts him in direct conflict with Eric Adams — who was a cop during the crack wars, who therefore knows what’s up, and who has promised to make crime a priority.
Adams probably didn’t expect Manhattan’s district attorney to be an obstacle to safe streets, but there you have it. He is.
Ball’s in your court, Mr. Mayor. Best of luck.
SOURCE: New York Post