So last week, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) had this to say on race relations:
"There is more interaction and more unfair interaction among police officers, white and black, in the black community than in the white community. And I think some of that responsibility is on the police department and on police departments to train their officers better and to make their police departments much more diversified," Giuliani said Sunday. "But I think just as much, if not more, responsibility is on the black community to reduce the reason why the police officers are assigned in such large numbers to the black community."
Giuliani then brought up crime statistics similar to those he cited a week ago.
"It’s because blacks commit murder eight times more per capita than any other group in our society. And when I assigned police officers with Commissioner Bratton and Commissioner Safir, we did it based on statistics. We didn’t do it based on race. If there were a lot of murders in a community, we put a lot of police officers there," he said.
Since his appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press" last weekend, Giuliani has made several controversial remarks on race and crime in the U.S.
On Sunday, Giuliani also said that he didn't think Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson's case should have gone to a grand jury.
"I don’t see how this case normally would have been brought to a grand jury," he said. "This is the kind of case, had it not had the racial overtones and the national publicity, where a prosecutor would have come to the conclusion that there’s not enough evidence to present to the grand jury."
Well current New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) shot back at Giuliani's idiotic remarks:
"I think he fundamentally misunderstands the reality," DeBlasio said about Giuliani on ABC's "This Week." "We're trying to bring police and community together. There is a problem here. There is a rift here that has to be overcome,"
"You cannot look at the incident in Missouri, another incident in Cleveland, Ohio and another incident in New York City all happening in the space of weeks and act like there's not a problem," he continued. "There's something fundamental we have to get at here. And it's not going to be helped by accusing either the community or the police of having bad intention or not doing their job. In fact, I think everyone is trying to do their job."
Here's the transcript between de Blasio and George Stephanopoulos:
STEPHANOPOULOS: -- as you know, you're -- (INAUDIBLE) Mayor Rudy Giuliani has been talking about what he says is another reality, the reality of black on black crime.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RUDOLPH GIULIANI, FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: I think just as much, if not more, responsibility is on the black community to reduce the reason why the police officers are assigned in such large numbers to the black community. It's because blacks commit murder eight times more per capita than any other group in our society.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
STEPHANOPOULOS: He also said that not recognizing that is racist and that comments like yours are trying down respect for the criminal justice system.
DE BLASIO: I think he fundamentally misunderstands the reality. We're trying to bring police and community together. There is a problem here. There is a rift here that has to be overcome. You cannot look at the incident in Missouri, another incident in Cleveland, Ohio and another incident in New York City all happening in the space of weeks and act like there's not a problem. There's something fundamental we have to get at here.
And it's not going to be helped by accusing either the community or the police of having bad intention or not doing their job. In fact, I think everyone is trying to do their job.
Of course, communities want to keep themselves safe. Of course parents want to teach their children to be law-abiding. Of course, police are protecting us.
But there is a disconnect that has to be overcome. I think body cameras are part of the solution, because they'll create a sense of accountability. I think retraining the police to show them how to deescalate, use less violent approaches when possible, work more closely with the community.
These are the ways forward.
But let's face it, a lot of voices on both ends of the spectrum want to keep us mired in a history that hasn't worked for us.
What we're trying to do in New York City -- and I think Commissioner Bratton has been absolutely visionary on this front -- is say you know what, there is another phase ahead. We can stay safe and draw political and community closer together. There's some place we have not yet been that we have to get to.
For Mayor de Blasio, the issues of race relations and the police are personal:
De Blasio explained after the non-indictment of Eric Garner that he and his wife "had to literally train" their son Dante how to handle encounters with police -- an experience shared by the parents of other African-American children around the country. The head of the city's police union said de Blasio's statement "threw cops under the bus."
Speaking on ABC's "This Week" with George Stephanopoulos on Sunday, de Blasio said there was "so much misunderstanding" about what he meant.
"What parents have done for decades who have children of color, especially young men of color, is train them to be very careful when they have a connection with a police officer," de Blasio said.
"It's different for a white child. That's just the reality in this country," de Blasio went on. "And with Dante, very early on with my son, we said, look, if a police officer stops you, do everything he tells you to do, don't move suddenly, don't reach for your cell phone, because we knew, sadly, there's a greater chance it might be misinterpreted if it was a young man of color."