The following editorial appeared in the New York Daily News on Nov. 17:
NEW YORK (Tribune News Service) — Donald Trump admits no mistakes; his Roy Cohn-learned reflex is to punch back at critics harder. Kudos to Mike Bloomberg for having the maturity to forthrightly, albeit very belatedly, acknowledge he was wrong on a major crime-fighting pillar.
We had the same awakening. Before Bill de Blasio became mayor, this Editorial Board warned against a wholesale unraveling of widespread stop, question and frisk, a legal tactic that unnecessarily dragged hundreds of thousands of black and brown young men into the net of cops and often courts.
We feared that plans to relax the tactic, which had been ruled unconstitutional in a flawed federal court case, would lead to spikes in gun violence.
Two-and-a-half years ago, we looked at the data and found that far fewer stop-and-frisks during Police Commissioner Bill Bratton’s second tour, further slashing numbers that had already dropped dramatically under Bloomberg and Commissioner Ray Kelly, had not triggered an upsurge in bloodshed. To the contrary, crime and violent crime kept plunging to record lows.
We said plainly what any honest person looking at the evidence must conclude: We were wrong.
Bloomberg put it this way at a Brooklyn church on Sunday: “I now see that we could and should have acted sooner, and acted faster, to cut the stops ... I was wrong, and I’m sorry.”
Cynics will say that the nascent presidential candidate, who stubbornly clung to his defense as evidence mounted, is retreating because he has to nurse an open wound with black voters.
We’ll take an apology, whatever the motivations. It sets the record straight once and for all.
Visit New York Daily News at www.nydailynews.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency. © 2019 New York Daily News.