New York City and San Francisco are the latest victims of their own soft-on-crime policies. Waving goodbye to convenience, employment opportunities, and taxpaying businesses from coast to coast, traditional chains are heading for the hills after losing their bottom lines to rampant, repeated, non-punishable shoplifting. Popping up like burnt toast, crooks knowing they won’t be tossed in the pokey have overrun even the traditional mega-retail chains, leaving bare shelves for frustrated shoppers with actual money. The latest grab-and-go casualties: Rite Aid and Walgreens drugstores and pharmacies.
It has become absurd to those witnessing the lack of policing. One NYC man — comedian and actor Michael Rapaport — decided to follow a shoplifter, video said scofflaw, and post the recording on Instagram. Roll tape, so to speak, Rapaport documented the man filling bags with stolen goods who proceeded to walk past a security guard and onto the street. Rapaport was aghast: “This f–king guy just filled his two bags up with everything in Rite Aid, right here on 80th [Street] and First Avenue is walking down the street like s–t is Gucci. I was watching him the whole time.”
Rapaport went back to his neighborhood store on the Upper East Side, which boasted not a tube of toothpaste or toilet paper or anything else on the shelves. His comment? “Back in my Rite Aid, and there’s nothing to steal because this Rite Aid, like so many other Rite Aids, is closing down because everyone stole everything.”
But New York City isn’t the only free-stuff-for-the-taking location.
You Can’t Handle the Truth
Liberal cities have allowed businesses to be plundered by criminals at will. Progressive-thinking Democrats, much like Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex (D-NY), excuse the practice, stating “people aren’t paying their rent & are scared to pay their rent & so they go out & they need to feed their child & they don’t have money so … they feel like they either need to shoplift some bread or go hungry.” Well, if you can follow that Twitter logic, it’s a free pass for thugs.
One San Francisco neighborhood retail staple also cried “uncle” after witnessing an increase in shoplifting. In December 2021, Walgreens closed five stores, blaming uncontrolled, unpatrolled, and unpunishable crime. The company released this statement:
“Retail theft across our San Francisco stores has continued to increase in the past few months to five times our chain average. During this time to help combat this issue, we increased our investments in security measures in stores across the city to 46 times our chain average in an effort to provide a safe environment.”
Walgreens has closed ten stores in the San Fran city limits since 2019.
The National Retailers Federation released a report to wrap up the 2021 fiscal year. Just about 69% of retailers nationwide experienced an increase in what is termed organized retail crimes — whether by employees or outside five-finger-discount shoppers — and they blame the pandemic, lack of ability to police misdemeanors, and changes to sentencing guidelines.
And from the top down in the Biden administration, no one seems to want to stop the assault on business.
Let’s Talk About Nonexistent Inflation Instead
It’s hard to blame retailers for boarding up windows and expanding in a more policed location when folks like White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki brush it off as if there’s a stinkbug on her power suit. Her brilliance on issues notwithstanding, the wily redhead chastised Judge Jeanine Pirro for having the audacity not to follow what CNN, MSNBC, and CNBC were 24-7 covering. As Psaki seemed to smirk with superiority, she spoke the golden words, “On Fox, Jeanine Pirro is talking about soft on crime consequences. I mean what, what, what does that even mean. Right?”
Perhaps the administration might want to jingle the corporate offices of Walgreens and Rite Aid to get a primer on how business is run. Successful corporations certainly do run like our government. “Right?”
~ Read more from Sarah Cowgill.