For a man who was the Mayor of one of the most diverse cities in the world, the question of crime should not be a racial issue.
But not to Mayor Michael Bloomberg. To him, crimes only happen in the black and brown communities and only minorities commit crimes.
Speaking to a mostly white audience in 2015, Bloomberg said police throughout the U.S. should focus on minority communities “because that’s where all the crime is.”
Bloomberg who was speaking to members of the Aspen Institute in Colorado on 5 February 2015, said that male minorities are the ones that perpetrate “the real crime.”
He was defending the practice known as “Stop and Frisk” which allows police officers to stop minorities, throw them against the wall and frisk them for illegal drugs and weapons, for no apparent reason.
The audio of Bloomberg’s speech surfaced this week and in it you could clearly hear the Mayor articulate his belief that only minorities commit crimes.
“It’s controversial, but first thing is, all of your – 95% percent of your murders, murderers and murder victims, fit one M.O.
“You can just take the description, Xerox it and pass out to all the cops. They are male minorities, 15 to 25. That’s true in New York.
“It’s true in virtually every city. And that’s where the real crime is. You’ve got to get the guns out of the hands of the people that are getting killed.”
The Mayor said that cities should “put those cops where the crime is, which is in the minority neighborhoods. So this is – one of the unintended consequences is, people say, ‘Oh my God, you are arresting kids for marijuana that are all minorities.’ Yes, that’s true. Why?
“Because we put all the cops in the minority neighborhoods. Yes, that’s true. Why do we do it? Because that’s where all the crime is.”
He told the nearly all white group that “the way you get the guns out of the kids’ hands is to throw them against the wall and frisk them.”
When confronted with the audio tape this week, Bloomberg, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for President of United States, said he regrets saying these things.
“I regret that and I have apologized – and I have taken responsibility for taking too long to understand the impact it had on black and Latino communities.”
U.S. President Donald Trump, himself a well-known racist, tried to use the controversy to cast Bloomberg as a racist but immediately deleted his tweet when reminded of his past actions and his support for “Stop and Frisk.”
Trump tweeted: “WOW, BLOOMBERG IS A TOTAL RACIST!” He highlighted his tweet with #BloombergIsARacist.
Bloomberg said Trump’s tweet was an attempt to divide Americans.
He said Trump “inherited a country marching towards greater equality and divided us with racist appeals and hateful rhetoric”.
“President Trump’s deleted tweet is the latest example of his endless efforts to divide Americans,” Bloomberg added.