Post-election analysis indicates that, on Long Island, crime was a major issue that led to Democrats’ defeat. (I need to note that our congressional candidate, Bridget Fleming, carried Southampton Town.)
Surely, the first thing Republican Congressman Jim Jordan, reputed to be the incoming chair of the House of Representatives Justice Committee, would do would be to provide insight into Republican plans for crime fighting. However, according to all reports I’ve read, Jim Jordan’s main goal is to begin investigations, possibly leading to impeachment hearings targeting President Joe Biden and various Biden administration cabinet members.
That probably won’t improve street crime — but this did.
You may recall the American Rescue Plan, a bill advanced by congressional Democrats and signed into law by President Biden that, among other things, provided a large infusion of money to local governments.
According to the Marshall Project, a nonprofit that studies criminal justice issues, $26 billion from the ARP has been spent so far on all matters of public safety enhancement, including police recruitment and retention, police salaries, and equipment such as tasers, rifles, drones, police cars, armored vehicles, body scanners, body armor, police dogs, etc.
Discussion of public safety can be and has been distorted in the political arena; conversely, it can be advanced if good leaders are elected.
In 2020-21, in the wake of the death of George Floyd, our town leaders addressed police/community relations by establishing the Community Law Enforcement Review Committee. The Southampton Press provided witness to the maturity on display by our town leaders, Supervisor Jay Schneiderman and the recently mourned Police Chief Steven Skrynecki, when they measured up to the challenge: “The process of formulating the plan was born of a difficult time in the nation but ends with a local demonstration of the best in people when, with humility, we work together toward a greater purpose.”
Southampton has proven that a stakeholder in a room with mature leadership can produce results.
National leaders, take note.
Anthony is a former Southampton Town Democratic Committee chairman — Ed.
One fine body…