‘Cultural Shift’ in NYC Neighborhoods Seen as Key to Crime Drop


New York Times columnist Michael Powell says police should shared the credit for crime’s decline with a “cultural shift” among citizens. “Nearly every drop in crime is attributed to this or that police strategy,” he writes. “This fails to reckon with a more intriguing sea change to be found in neighborhoods once marked by shootings and mayhem.”

Powell continues, “Blocks surrendered to the rubble of abandonment have been rebuilt with city dollars; teenage girls are having fewer children and are far less likely to turn to welfare; drug overdose deaths and prison populations have dropped sharply, and life expectancy and homeownership in these neighborhoods has risen sharply. This cultural shift might explain as much about the current drop in crime as any changes wrought by fine policing.”

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