Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) appears to be sympathizing with criminals contributing to a recent spike in violence in New York City.
In a virtual town-hall meeting, the young congresswoman suggested that the violence is perhaps due to the economic struggles of those committing the crimes:
“Do we think this has to do with the fact that there’s record unemployment in the United States right now?…The fact that people are at a level of economic desperation that we have not seen since the Great Recession?”
AOC on increased NYC crime: "Maybe this has to do with the fact that 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." pic.twitter.com/oHSTWWJZ6a
— The Hill (@thehill) July 12, 2020
While economic challenges and violence are certainly conversations worth having, AOC did not provide any substantive link between the uptick in violence and the idea that the violence is based in survival efforts.
Recent reports indicate an increase in violence, but a consistent rate of motive. Random acts of violence, domestic disturbances, and gang-related activity have remained consistent. There have not been any increases in shoplifting for food or goods that people need to survive.
AOC is reputable for her radical ideas and rogue approaches to socio-political matters. Her “revolutionary” approach to political influence has won her the ears of many young voters. 80% of her reelection funds come from the $200 or less contribution rate, indicating younger contributors.