Lyndon Johnson on Crime
"Community Action" to address youth crime in poor areas
Eager for new ideas, he even accepted one that had emerged from the President's Committee on Juvenile Delinquency and Youth Crime.
[Others] had been urging him to make a concept
called "community action"--a vague proposal to involve the residents of impoverished neighborhoods in programs that affected them--a key part of the program. Opposed to the idea at first as being too vague,
Johnson changed his mind, because it had emerged from a "Kennedy committee" and opposing it would therefore conflict with the continuity theme. "People would have said, 'Oh, he's not really sincere.'" Johnson's own explanation was that
while "I realized that" the community action concept "might shake up many existing institutions, but I decided that some shaking up might be needed to get a bold new program moving."
Source: Passage of Power, by Robert Caro, p.544
, May 1, 2012
War on Crime: $100M for state & local master plans
We, at every level of the government, State, local, Federal, know that the American people have had enough of rising crime and lawlessness in this country. They recognize that law enforcement is first the duty of local police and local government. But
the people also recognize that the National Government can and the National Government should help the cities & States in their war on crime to the full extent of its resources and its constitutional authority. This does not mean a national police force.
It does mean help and financial support:
There is no more urgent business before this Congress than to pass the Safe Streets Act this year that I proposed last year. I have doubled my request under this act to $100 million in fiscal 1969.
Source: Pres. Johnson's 1968 State of the Union message to Congress
, Jan 17, 1968
- to develop State and local master plans to combat crime,
- to provide better training and better pay for police, and
- to bring the most advanced technology to the war on crime in every city and every
county in America.
National Crime Commission: all-out effort to combat crime
This Nation must make an all-out effort to combat crime. The 89th Congress gave us a new start in the attack on crime by passing the Law Enforcement Assistance Act that I recommended. We appointed the National Crime Commission to study crime in America
and to recommend the best ways to carry that attack forward.
This is not a war that Washington alone can win. The idea of a national police force is repugnant to the American people. Crime must be rooted out in local communities by local authorities.
Our policemen must be better trained, must be better paid, and must be better supported by the local citizens that they try to serve and to protect. And so I will recommend the Safe Streets and Crime Control Act. It will enable us to assist those States
and cities that try to make their streets and homes safer, their police forces better, their corrections systems more effective, and their courts more efficient. The Federal Government will be able to provide a substantial percentage of the cost.
Source: Pres. Johnson's 1967 State of the Union message to Congress
, Jan 10, 1967
Discover the causes of crime and better ways to prevent it
Every citizen has the right to feel secure in his home and on the streets of his community. To help control crime, we will recommend programs to:
I will assemble a panel of experts to search out answers to the national problem of crime and delinquency, and I welcome the recommendations and the constructive efforts of the Congress.
Source: Pres. Johnson's 1964 State of the Union message to Congress
, Jan 8, 1964
- train local law enforcement officers
- put the best techniques of modern science at their disposal
- discover the causes of crime and better ways to prevent it.
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Other past presidents on Crime:
Lyndon Johnson on other issues:
George W. Bush(R,2001-2009)
George Bush Sr.(R,1989-1993)
John F. Kennedy(D,1961-1963)
Harry S Truman(D,1945-1953)
Past Vice Presidents:
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Page last updated: Feb 22, 2022