Sunday, January 04, 2015

Thoughts on Broken Windows

William Bratton, NYC police commissioner, and George Kelling, criminal professor emeritus from Rutgers, take time to write:
Critics have posed a variety of arguments against Broken Windows.  Some assert that it is synonymous with the controversial patrol tactic known as "stop, question, and frisk."  Others allege that Broken Windows is discriminatory, used as a tool to target minorities.  Some academics claim that Broken Windows has no effect on serious crime and that demographic and economic causes better explain the reductions in crime in New York and across the United States.  Still other critics suggest that order-maintenance policing leads to over-incarceration or tries to impose a white middle-class morality on urban populations.  It is rare to have the opportunity and space to correct all the misconceptions and misrepresentations embedded in such charges.  We will counter them here, one by one.

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