(RDtNVC: Reason of the day to not vote Conservative)
I think I finally understand the fuzzy blue sweaters now.
Because, when I thought the Conservative were going to run on the “Canada is strong” theme, I didn’t see why they wanted the leader to appear more soft and fuzzy. Seemed incongruous.
But, that’s actually not their theme, is it? It’s more like, Canada is weak. Canada is in danger. And only the Conservatives can protect you.
For that message to come across, they have to totally that old “Harper is scary” thing. He has to look safe and reassuring. So Canadians are ready to bury our heads in the sand and join them behind the barricades.
Safe. Safe from crazy-ass, risky ideas like taxing pollution instead of income.
And of course, safe from the bad guys. The criminals. The gangs.
Only the Conservatives can protect us. “Soft on crime does not work.”
I like how he says “Soft on crime” as though it’s actual thing, and not just a cliché. As though the Liberals had previously passed the famous “Soft on crime” bill, or something.
Anyway, whatever “soft on crime” is, apparently that’s what we have now. And I guess it’s just not working.
Wait, what’s that flying by there? Is that an actual fact?
Canada’s overall national crime rate, based on incidents reported to police, hit its lowest point in over 25 years in 2006, driven by a decline in non-violent crime.
The overall crime rate fell in every province and territory in 2006.
Police reported 605 homicides in 2006, 58 fewer than in 2005. This resulted in a rate of 1.85 homicides per 100,000 population, 10% lower than in 2005. The national homicide rate has generally been declining since the mid-1970s, when it was around 3.0.
Virtually all provinces and territories reported declines in their homicide rate in 2006. The most notable occurred in Ontario, where there were 23 fewer homicide.
Boy, yeah. We sure don’t want to keep that up!
But wait, wait — buried in there — what’s that about youth crime. Up 3%? 3%! Now there’s your “soft on crime”. It’s that darned young offenders act. Because, really, until we start incarcerating 14-year-olds, how are they going to learn to be better criminals?
Oh, pesky facts, stop telling me that youth offenders actually get incarcerated at much higher rates than adult offenders, and are much less likely to be released early.
Instead, I’m going to take a Conservative tack and tell you a story. If they were to tell you one, it would be about some hideous youth committing some appaling crime. Mine will be a little different.
At 15 years old, Ashley Smith was arrested for throwing crab apples at her post man and was placed in youth custody.
Throwing crab apples.
She proved to be a less than compliant inmate, though, and her original sentence was extended repeatedly in response to her behavior, which included many incidents of self-harm. Although she showed clear signs of mental disturbance, she received no consistent psychiatric treatment. She spent two-thirds of her sentence in a nine-by-six-foot isolation cell.
At 18 years, she was transferred to a federal prison. There she was subjected to pepper spray and a stun gun. And she was kept in segregation for nearly a year. She filed a grievance against conditions in segregation, which included inadequate protection against cold. But against federal regulations, the grievance was ignored.
Ashley Smith committed suicide on October 19, 2007. She was 19.