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Ben Crump says ending crime in US as easy as changing ‘definition of crime’; Dr Swain says that’s ‘ludicrous’

Civil rights attorney Ben Crump saying U.S. laws target Black culture, and to end crime you must redefine what are considered crimes is "ludicrous," said Dr. Carol Swain.

A prominent civil rights attorney suggesting that the U.S. justice system creates laws "to criminalize Black culture" and crime could be eradicated if they "change the definition of crime" is "problematic" and "ludicrous," said legal scholar and political scientist Dr. Carol Swain. 

"We need laws to be obeyed, and we need a public that's informed. And under no circumstances should we redefine crime so that it isn't crime," Swain told Fox News. "Are we going to redefine murder? Are we going to redefine rape? No, we don't want to go down that path."


To commemorate Black history and culture, MSNBC aired a special on Feb. 4 titled "Black Men in America: Road to 2024." In one part of the program, a group of men including MSNBC contributor Charles Coleman Jr., Rev. Al Sharpton and civil rights attorney Ben Crump are discussing police brutality and the criminal justice system under President Biden while playing pool. 

"They come up with things to profile us for," Crump said in the special. "I believe this with everything in my heart – we can get rid of all the crime in America overnight, just like that, and people ask, ‘How, Attorney Crump?'

"Change the definition of ‘crime,'" he continued. "If you get to define what conduct is going to be made criminal, you can predict who the criminals are going to be. … They made the laws to criminalize our culture, Black culture."


Swain said this type of rhetoric coming from a respected civil rights attorney only serves to create more hostility between Black youths and law enforcement

"What he is saying is false, it's problematic, and it will lead to the loss of Black lives," she said. "Unfortunately, people who are not well-educated, or people who have been indoctrinated with Marxism, they will believe him, and that will be unfortunate for America."

According to FBI data, Black individuals committed 46.8% of violent crimes and 36% of drug crimes in the U.S. in 2022, despite making up only 14.4% of the population. 

As a Black woman, Swain said it pains her to admit that there is a disproportionate amount of crime within the Black community

"The argument that the crimes that Black Americans and maybe other minorities are being arrested for, that somehow these are biased, somehow targets them, I think it's ludicrous," she told Fox News. "In fact, there are some things that they are not being arrested for that I would arrest them for."

Instead of perpetuating rhetoric that breeds more anger and distrust toward authority figures, Swain said prominent figures like Crump should work on finding real solutions to improve the lives of Black Americans.

"There are people in every community that are out there working to try to reduce Black crime, working to try to change our neighborhoods," she told Fox News. "But unfortunately, they are undermined by the likes of Benjamin Crump."

Crump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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