When it comes to creating policy, many Democrats use emotion instead of reason. They tend to support policies not because they make sense, but because they think they’re well intentioned. As a consequence, a vast number of the policies supported by the left actually end up making people less safe.
For example, Democrats in New York City are currently trying to get the New York Police Department (NYPD) to make their anti-terror tactics public. However, doing so would put everyone, especially local law enforcement officers, in extreme danger and would make it easier for terrorists to evade capture.
According to reports, two New York City Council members, Dan Garodnick (D-Manhattan) and Vanessa Gibson (D-Bronx), recently a bill that would essentially require the NYPD to publicize their counter-terrorism strategy. Specifically, the Public Oversight of Surveillance Technology Act would force the police department “to issue reports on what kinds of spy equipment police use – such as license-plate readers, cell phone trackers and X-ray vans used to peer through walls – as well [as] how the department stores and protects private information collected.”
To justify the legislation, Garodnick stated, “civilians are in control of the police force – not the reverse. We need to be able to understand what tools the NYPD has and how it uses them to ensure public trust in our criminal justice system.”
However, John Miller, the Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence And Counterterrorism for the NYPD, claimed that passing the bill would be extremely dangerous. “In a final analysis, all that this legislation does is provide an invaluable roadmap to criminals, terrorists, and others for how to harm the public,” Miller argued. “[If passed, it] would create an effective blueprint for those seeking to do harm. As written, it would endanger police officers’ lives and the lives of other resources and the lives of citizens who may be caught in either criminal activity or terrorist attacks,” he explained. “[It’s] asking us to describe the specific manufacturer and model of an undercover recording device that an officer is wearing in an ongoing terror investigation,” he continued, noting, “that would be insane, and it would endanger lives.”
Larry Byrne, the NYPD Deputy Commissioner for Legal Matters, also spokeout against the bill. “The public must trust cops with sensitive matters. [The public doesn’t] have the right to know how certain technology can be used. There are very strict safeguards around how long and how these technologies are used,” argued Byrne.
“I think the City Council has an important role to play, but ultimately the state and federal law should govern what the NYPD does. We’re a public agency that has multiple levels of oversight, and we’re accountable to multiple levels of government,” he continued, adding, “it’s not the role of the Council to decide what technology we use, or what investigative techniques we use. It’s the role of the Council to have an oversight role to make sure that we’re behaving legally. They don’t get to decide which lawful investigative techniques we use when.”
Surprisingly, New York City’s liberal Mayor, Bill de Blasio (D), also opposes the legislation. His reasoning was very similar to the reasoning used by Miller and Byrne. “This bill is a short-sighted overreach that would make New Yorkers less safe,” announced his spokesman, Austin Finan. “We’re not about to hand over a roadmap for terrorists and criminals to avoid legal and well-established investigative techniques,” reasoned Finan.
In response to the outrage and lack of support from the mayor, Garodnick let the committee know that he’s open to working with the NYPD to revise the proposal.
The authoritarian left must not be allowed to endanger the lives of others. Since a bill forcing the NYPD to publicize their anti-terror tactics will do just that, it must be opposed. In addition, those proposing the bill need to be voted out of office and replaced with people that understand in order to be safe, our law enforcement agencies need to have some secrets.