Commentary| Why Cities Burn


By Mike Smith

Says Ben Shapiro in The Bigotry of No Expectations:

Everyone has a right to expect that the police will treat them in accordance with the law. American citizens also have the right to expect that when things go wrong, their cities won’t burn.”

Ben Shapiro is half right. Expecting to be treated lawfully by police should go without saying in America. And except for the blind enforcement of unconstitutional ‘public health’ orders lately, this country’s law enforcement officers are largely lawful.

But there is no right to expect cities not to burn “when things go wrong.”

In fact, “when things go wrong” comes much sooner than is most widely believed.

Most people who live or work in big cities (the context here) foolishly expect more ‘city safety’ than the people in them can provide. This is plainly observable. And the mass ignorance behind the expectation defies a world history of many, many cities ruined from within – socially and physically.

Yet all city communities undergo family ruin long before being set on fire.

The fact so many people think cities are less likely to burn than they actually are, only proves the point.

Urban communities generate large sums of people who think they are safer in big cities than is the case. This is not hard to prove. And why so many? Because decades of family failure, corrupted mass academia and societal softness ‘inform’ the mass ignorance and irrational fear over why cities burn.

Even some of America’s best citizens want to believe big cities can be healthier, more stable and more family-friendly than is possible. Sorry, folks: cities DO burn. Their inherent flaws make it inevitable.

This is a cynical fact of life – no opinionated cynics necessary. “When things go wrong” is when too many people inhabit too confined a space for self-governance and small government to survive.

From that point, bets can be made when crime will increase; then corruption; then riots; then fires. The math is on history’s side.

And this is no dig on law enforcement – there always comes a point where a growing big city cannot be adequately policed no matter the resources. Urban mayors and ‘their’ police chiefs bending to collectivist mobs, imposing criminal-helping rules of engagement on officers, is the effect of their cities’ causal defects. Another is the urban-based media’s racist ‘black-white divide in policing’ libel.

In the 400 years Israel ruled itself as a nation with no human king, Israel was mostly rural. America’s Founders created America on this moral self-governance model. There’s a lesson here.

Does America still have time to learn it?

If We, The People don’t bother to, the answer is certain.

Mike Smith was a 23 year resident of Camarillo

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Citizens Journal.

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