Don’t buy the hype: The U.S. is not experiencing a terrible new crime wave

There has been a surge of assertions about rising crime recently. At the Republican convention in July, GOP nominee Donald Trump said, “Decades of progress made in bringing down crime are now being reversed by this administration’s rollback of criminal enforcement.” The Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald echoed these concerns, noting that homicides increased by nearly 17 percent in the 56 largest U.S. cities last year and citing sharp rises in Baltimore, Chicago and the District. In an op-ed in last Sunday’s Post, Sean Kennedy and Parker Abt made the same case.

As two strong conservatives, let us set the record straight. These statements on rising murders are highly misleading. The truth is that Americans are still experiencing hard-won historic lows in crime.

When examining statistics on crime, researchers evaluate several factors: overall crime, violent crime, homicide and property crime.

By 2014, violent crime had fallen by half from its 1991 peak. Property crime was down 49 percent. Crime overall was 66 percent lower in major cities. No one disputes this decades-long trend.