Recently on CBS, Congresswoman Cori Bush (D-MO) defended calling for abolishing law enforcement while spending $70,000 on armed private security. “We need to defund the police,” she said, “and put that money into social safety net.” The stark hypocrisy drew knee-jerk jeers, but no one took the next logical step: Why not hire social workers to watch her back?
Obviously, the congresswoman doesn’t trust her precious life to pencil-neck nerds practicing conflict resolution. Why? Because her life matters. Yours? Not so much. “I have private security,” she declared, “because my body is worth being on this planet right now.”
Jeff Bezos notwithstanding, I’d guess that most of us like being on this planet. I know I do. For one thing, the third rock from the sun is where my liquor lives, and while there may be ice on Mars, it’s 240 million miles from the nearest bottle of bourbon. So, I’m staying put, and I’d like a reasonable police presence to ensure citizens like me remain on the right side of the grass.
Yet Ms. Bush remains Congress’s answer to Narcissus, caring only for the face in the mirror, willing to defund police for the public while funding a force up to $200,000 or more, telling CBS she‘ll spend whatever it takes. “I’m gonna make sure I have security because I know I have had attempts on my life,” which apparently failed to make news, “and I have too much work to do.”
If it’s having “work to do” that qualifies one for security, what about victims like 13-year-old Nevaeh Smallwood, murdered on August 3rd in Ms. Bush‘s own St. Louis? Nevaeh surely had much to do in all the years stolen from her.
Pressed by CBS, Ms. Bush insisted that she‘s received death threats. That’s reprehensible, and I hope they get the sumbitches. By “they,” I mean the Capitol Police, who provide security and investigate such matters; they don’t send social workers to track criminals or look to salve the “root causes.” Midnight basketball didn’t stop Bernie Sanders staffer James Hodgkinson from trying to massacre every last Republican at that baseball practice. A policeman did.
But when an average citizen’s life is in peril, they can’t call the Capitol Police. They call 911. Why would we disconnect the number and replace it with groovy whale sounds, especially when an address in some cities means a constant threat of death?
Ms. Bush tried to turn the tables on critics, asking, “You would rather me die?” No, we would prefer nobody gets murdered — not you, not all the Nevaehs out there — which is why civilized countries draw that thin blue line in the first place.
Inexplicably, Ms. Bush believes she needs armed guards to save her from “the white supremacist racist narrative” while abandoning millions of Black Americans to those roving lynch mobs without a single cop for protection.
If you’re not privileged enough to pull down a congressional salary, you can’t hire gunslingers like Paladin from “Have Gun Will Travel.” So, the social contract is we pay our taxes, and the government protects us from crime. That’s part of Ms. Bush‘s job in Congress.
Americans have an inalienable right to life, liberty, and property, protected by police that are every bit as dedicated as those on Ms. Bush‘s payroll. The congresswoman is throwing the baby out with the bathwater and blaming someone else when the baby gets shot.
The very demographic Ms. Bush presumes to speak for wants to live long lives, enjoying all this big blue marble has to offer. A new USA Today/Suffolk University/Detroit Free Press poll found 90% of Detroit residents would feel safer with more police on the streets. Different polls reflect an identical yearning.
This is America. We can walk and chew Bubblicious at the same time. In 1895 when Theodore Roosevelt took seats as New York City police commissioner and on the Board of Health, he weeded out the bad cops with extreme prejudice, reformed law enforcement procedures, and ensured the social safety net caught those in need. He had no time for complainers, saying, “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” It worked then; it’ll work now.
Cori Bush‘s hypocrisy exposes the false choice between smart policing and social services, and she can’t spin her way out of it. To quote John Adams, “Facts are stubborn things.” So, the next time she says she’ll spend whatever it costs on “security for me not for thee,” there’s only one question to ask:
“Why not defund your personal police?”
After all, 200 grand would buy one hell of a safety net.
• Dean Karayanis is producer for the Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show, longtime Rush Limbaugh staffer, and host of History Author Show on iHeartRadio.