People seem to be shitting themselves over comments by William Bennett. In response to the idea that legalized abortions reduce the crime rate (by the logic that aborted babies would tend to be born in to lower class families and be more likely to break the law), he said:
I do know that it’s true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could — if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down. That would be an impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down. So these far-out, these far-reaching, extensive extrapolations are, I think, tricky.
If you look at the comments on the MM page, you’ll see that people are having conniption fits over this thing, of the “OH MY GOD WHAT A RACIST!!!1!” sort. Come now.
1. Blacks are disproportionately represented in the American penal system. Say what you want about the circumstances that got them there: judicial bias, social and economic inequalities, whatever; it has nothing to do with inherent racial flaws, but black people do commit more crimes, statistically speaking.
2. It may have been a poorly chosen example, but pick your own: if we kill all humans, the environment will improve; if we kill all men, crime will go down; if we burn down all fast food chains, our obesity epidemic will improve. The example was chosen because, while technically true, it would be utterly ridiculous to implement, just like Bennett said.
I’m not familiar with Bennett’s other work, and it may be that I wouldn’t agree with him any other time, but in this situation, I think the response on the Left has been dominated by histrionics. Calm down, people: what part of “morally reprehensible” don’t you get?