Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms says her metropolis is besieged by crime as a result of Republicans within the statehouse jumped the gun on ending Georgia’s COVID-19 restrictions.
Bottoms, a Democrat, advised MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle that lax gun legal guidelines and younger folks with an excessive amount of free time have added to a 50 % improve in murders from earlier than the pandemic — however she mentioned Gov. Brian Kemp’s controversial April 20, 2020, transfer to ease lockdown restrictions was additionally a fundamental offender.
“Bear in mind in Georgia we have been opened up earlier than the remainder of the nation, even earlier than the CDC mentioned that it was secure for us to open so our evening golf equipment and our bars remained open so we had folks touring right here from throughout the nation to social gathering in our metropolis,” Bottoms mentioned throughout the Friday interview.
The mayor additionally mentioned the pandemic “left lots of people battered and bruised, not simply bodily but additionally emotionally,” which has led to a rise and private disputes that have been aggravated by easy accessibility to weapons.
“Till we cope with the systemic problems with gun violence on this nation, how simply younger folks, folks with psychological diseases can entry weapons on this nation, I’m afraid that this won’t be the final summer season that we’re having this dialog,” Bottoms advised the cable community.
The mayor famous that the rise in violent crime was not distinctive to Atlanta.
“If it have been an Atlanta concern alone then I’d know that there was one thing that we weren’t getting proper… however I’m speaking to mayors and listening to from mayors in cities and enormous city areas, we’re all experiencing this which signifies that all of us must work collectively to discover a answer to this gun violence that’s gripping our nation,” Bottoms advised Ruhle.
Current numbers present shootings in New York Metropolis are up by about 68 % in 2021 in comparison with final 12 months.
Bottoms mentioned her metropolis is working with the FBI to clamp down on criminals whereas beginning a brand new summer season employment program for teenagers, in response to the report.
The mayor’s feedback come as some neighborhood leaders in Atlanta’s ritzy Buckhead neighborhood are transferring to secede from town over improve crime.