Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Where’s all the crime?

I rode my bike the other day from downtown Brooklyn to Astoria, Queens traversing not the worst ghettos in NYC, but not the best neighborhoods either. Somewhere in the no man’s land near the Brooklyn Navy Yard a kid pulled up in an SUV and shouted something at me. I couldn’t hear him over the rumble of traffic and asked him to speak up. The youth would need to get out of his car to be heard. He was of the portly sort and apparently felt leaving the vehicle was too much trouble and drove on. Later, a group of kids sitting on a bench near the Brooklyn-Queens sketchy bridge yelled at me, but were too fat to get up and hassle me further.

At first I was relieved, but then I began to worry: are this nation’s children too fat and lazy for crime? The guys from “Freakonomics” site the Roe v. Wade as the cause of America’s downturn in street crime (according to friend of mine—I must admit I never read the book). But has anyone considered what kind of ramifications this surprising side effect of the obesity epidemic might have on our economy? If people don’t steal cars and electronics, then less people will buy these luxury items to replace the stolen ones! But once again the free market came to the rescue. I thought back to the last time I was robbed. I was in India and a native broke into my hotel and stole my wallet, visa, and passport; so yes friends, the crime was outsourced. I then had a vision of the future: middle class kids buying heroin online directly from newly liberated poppy growers in Afghanistan (but not coke from those commies in Bolivia—we still prefer corrupt, America ravaged Colombian coke). It’s perfect. Technology cuts out the middleman, and low income Americans sink further into poverty with their own massive girth speeding their descent.

No comments: