The Real Radicals Aren't in Washington | Opinion

Since President Donald Trump left the White House in January, the mainstream media has crafted a narrative that his radical supporters in Washington were hell-bent on compromising the safety and security of our democracy. But in reality, the elected officials who have compromised Americans' well-being the most can be found much closer to home.

Over the last few years, far-left billionaire George Soros spent millions of dollars to successfully elect progressive district attorneys in major cities across the country, including Los Angeles, St. Louis, Chicago, Philadelphia and Houston. Soros spent $19 million on nearly two dozen races in 2018 alone that helped to fundamentally alter the criminal justice system throughout America.

When the Antifa/Black Lives Matter riots broke out in the summer of 2020 and violent crime dramatically spiked across the country, Soros-backed Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón in particular advanced a notably soft-on-crime prosecutorial approach. That hands-off approach has continued unabated in 2021.

Before taking office in Los Angeles, Gascón worked as the district attorney in San Francisco, a city that led in both violent and property crimes in California and all-too frequently resisted making arrests when needed to maintain basic public safety. Now, crime is spiking under Gascón's leadership as the chief law enforcement officer of over 10 million Angelenos.

In February, the Los Angeles Police Department reported that there was a nearly 60 percent increase in homicides from the year prior. It is worth honing in on one particularly galling example. Desiree Andrade is a California mother whose son Julien was brutally murdered in 2018. Specifically, Andrade has said her son was beat to death with a metal chair and a rock, stabbed in the face with a glass pipe, and thrown off a cliff to be left on the road as "roadkill." Andrade has said those charged with the death of her son were previously facing the possibility of life in prison without parole, but under Gascón, they now face only 25 years of prison time—allowing them to be released by age 40.

Downtown Los Angeles in January 2021
Downtown Los Angeles in January 2021 Jerritt Clark/GC Images

"These guys, a total of five suspects, were facing special circumstance charges of kidnapping, robbery and lying in wait. And as soon as George Gascón took office, those enhancements—the DAs were directed to dismiss those charges," she said in an interview on Fox News.

Gascón justifies his soft-on-murder approach by connecting the death penalty to racism. "In light of its unequal application to people of color, the death penalty inflicts an extraordinary amount of harm to the moral authority of our justice system," he wrote in an order. In other words, Gascón is forfeiting the pursuit of real justice in the name of woke social justice.

Gascón similarly eliminated sentencing enhancements for convicted criminals who would otherwise deserve them. In an order posted in December 2020, Gascón issued a directive stating, in relevant part, that "sentence enhancements or other sentencing allegations, including under the Three Strikes law, shall not be filed in any cases and shall be withdrawn in pending matters."

Aside from his leniency on violent crimes like murder, Gascón publicly announced he would no longer seek to prosecute crimes he alleges are "associated with poverty." He then codified that into another order in December 2020. Crimes such as trespassing, disturbing the peace, driving without a license, driving on a suspended license, drug and paraphernalia possession, drinking in public, public intoxication, loitering, loitering to commit prostitution and resisting arrest shall all "be declined or dismissed before arraignment and without conditions."

Unfortunately, Gascón is not alone in his application of critical race theory and intersectionality to the realm criminal justice. The hands-off approach by left-wing district attorneys, the war on police and the Black Lives Matter movement is responsible for over a thousand deaths across America's largest cities—a 30 percent increase from 2019, according to the National Commission on COVID-19 and Criminal Justice.

Gascón and his progressive district attorney counterparts have forfeited the pursuit of real justice in the name of woke social justice. The body count is only continuing to climb—all while the media instead spends its time lambasting congressional Republicans as reckless and crazy.

Ryan Girdusky is the author of They're Not Listening: How the Elites Created the Nationalist Populist Revolution.

The views expressed in this article are the writer's own.