In New York City in particular, small businesses say they are regularly targeted by thieves who are robbing them blind and essentially depriving them of being able to earn a living -- and they were already struggling to remain afloat after former Mayor Bill de Blasio and former Gov. Andrew Cuomo forced them to remain closed for a year over a virus with an extremely high survival rate.
One owner of some downtown boutiques has said that she has never felt "more exhausted" in trying to protect her businesses from shoplifters and criminal crews who are targeting shops like hers because they have been emboldened by DAs who won't file charges against them when they are caught. Also, New York City has essentially gotten rid of bail so when people are arrested they are often back out on the streets no later than they are processed by police.
Someone shattered the front door overnight and ripped out the cash drawer. The new security gates cost $2,300. The streets became quieter after four neighboring businesses closed permanently during the pandemic, emboldening shoplifters. Two security guards quit.
For Deborah Koenigsberger, who has worked in retail for three decades, keeping her two clothing stores open in Manhattan’s Flatiron neighborhood has never felt so exhausting.
"As small businesses, we are getting creamed right now in so many ways," Ms. Koenigsberger said. "I might as well leave my store door open and say, ‘Help yourselves."
But of course, because these problems and issues are directly the result of incredibly stupid and bad Democrat policies, the left-wing Times points the finger at other causes:
Her shops are among businesses in New York City grappling with a rise in crimes that has cascaded from the disruptions of the last two years. The pandemic exacerbated job losses, mental illness and drug abuse, which law enforcement officials and business owners say has contributed to increasingly brazen behavior from people walking into neighborhood stores, from shoplifting to assaults.
No, COVID isn't causing these thefts, nor is "mental illness" or "drug abuse." These robberies are caused by New York City's Democratic DAs refusing to enforce duly-passed laws.
Case in point: Newly elected Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg issued a directive shortly after he was sworn in back in January that he won't pursue charges for a host of additional crimes including theft. As reported by the New York Post, his "Day One" memo to all assistant DAs "directs prosecutors to drop some misdemeanor cases, not seek bail or prison time for most defendants and to downgrade certain felonies to misdemeanors."
Needless to say, the directive sparked outrage in the city (which leaves you wondering why New Yorkers continue electing these society-destroying Democrats in the first place) -- which then led Bragg to dial back on his soft-on-crime approach.
The Post in a separate report:
Embattled Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg reversed a pair of his most controversial policies in writing on Friday with a new memo calling for commercial robberies committed with knives to once again be prosecuted as felonies.
Bragg’s memo to staff also said that holding up a store or other business with a firearm “will be charged as a felony, whether or not the gun is operable, loaded, or a realistic imitation.”
But petty theft is still not considered very high on Bragg's list, which is why NYC retailers continue to suffer.
And as usual, Democratic politicians in the city are living in la-la land denial.
"Communities are safer when they have more resources, not when they’re overpoliced," state Sen. Gustavo Rivera incredibly said, without, of course, defining what he means by "more resources."
New Yorkers, continuing to elect Democrats who obviously don't care what happens to you is the very definition of insanity. So stop doing it.