Rhetoric vs. Reality, Police Safety Edition


Here’s the rhetoric:

Scott Walker:In the last six years under President Obama, we’ve seen a rise in anti-police rhetoric….[This] rhetoric has real consequences for the safety of officers who put their lives on the line for us and hampers their ability to serve the communities that need their help.”

Ted Cruz: “Cops across this country are feeling the assault. They’re feeling the assault from the president, from the top on down….That is fundamentally wrong, and it is endangering the safety and security of us all.”

Donald Trump: “I know cities where police are afraid to even talk to people because they want to be able to retire and have their pension….And then you wonder what’s wrong with our cities. We need a whole new mind-set.

And here’s the reality. During the George Bush administration, police fatalities per 100 million residents averaged 58 per year (54 if you exclude 2001). During the Obama administration, that’s dropped to 42.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

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We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

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Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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