Since 2002, the New York Police Department has taken tens of thousands of weapons off the street through proactive policing strategies. The effect this has had on the murder rate is staggering. In the 11 years before Mayor Michael Bloomberg took office, there were 13,212 murders in New York City. During the 11 years of his administration, there have been 5,849. That's 7,383 lives saved—and if history is a guide, they are largely the lives of young men of color.
To critics, none of this seems to much matter. Sidestepping the fact that these policies work, they continue to allege that massive numbers of minorities are stopped and questioned by police for no reason other than their race.
Racial profiling is a disingenuous charge at best and an incendiary one at worst, particularly in the wake of the tragic death of Trayvon Martin. The effect is to obscure the rock-solid legal and constitutional foundation underpinning the police department's tactics and the painstaking analysis that determines how we employ them.Read Ray Kelly: The NYPD: Guilty of Saving 7,383 Lives and let me know what you think about the Commish's arguments.