Larry O’Connor, It is anarchy on the streets of Los Angeles, and Mayor Eric Garcetti and Governor Gavin Newsom (both Democrats) are at a loss for words.
When protests over the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis turned violent early last week, Garcetti and Newsom could only bring themselves to make public statements of support for the protesters and their cause.
George Floyd was killed before our eyes — and we have every reason to be angry, to cry out for justice, to say never again.
— MayorOfLA (@MayorOfLA) May 28, 2020
This, despite the fact that the 101 freeway had been shut down and police cruisers were attacked over the course of the Wednesday evening marches. The absence of any sort of condemnation of the violence that escalated to looting and arson over the weekend was translated as tacit permission for the lawless behavior.
We will always protect free speech and Angelenos’ right to live without fear of violence or vandalism. To increase safety for demonstrators, law enforcement and all citizens of Los Angeles, we are putting a curfew in place from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m.
— MayorOfLA (@MayorOfLA) May 30, 2020
You gotta love the “to increase safety for our demonstrators” bit. No mention of the safety of innocent citizens of the city and the protection of private property being destroyed by the mob in the street. No, we have to protect the protesters.
But don’t make the mistake of thinking that this anarchy in the streets of California is merely a reaction to the events in Minneapolis and an unchecked escalation of events under the laissez-faire gaze of a feckless, ineffective mayor. No, the roots of California’s mob-rule grow deep and strong.
This contempt for basic rules of an orderly civilization has been years in the making.
Over a decade of the Jerry Brown, Gavin Newsom, and Eric Garcetti political philosophy of undermining the very laws these elected officials have sworn to uphold has sent a clear message to the people of California: Laws are optional. We are only meant to adhere to the laws we personally approve of.
California Democrats have instituted policies in California that openly ignore federal immigration laws. Police in the Golden State is prohibited from cooperating with federal law enforcement officers with regard to any suspect in custody who is in violation of immigration laws.
This sanctuary policy even applies to criminals who have been arrested and convicted in California of rape, child molestation and murder. When they are finished serving their time for their heinous crime, they are given protection and safe harbor from ICE agents.
California Democrats have let the people of California know that since they don’t agree with federal immigration laws, it’s ok to just ignore them. What message does that send?
It doesn’t end with immigration. Every city in California has laws on the books against criminal vagrancy. However, under the guise of compassion for “our unhoused neighbors,” police have been forbidden to enforce them. The result? Criminal vagrants live, urinate, defecate, fornicate and openly shoot-up while storing piles of used hypodermic needles on the sidewalks of California’s once-idyllic cities with impunity.
In fact, those who raise concerns about public health and quality of life concerns over these disastrous policies are shouted down as intolerant racists.
Let’s be clear: California Democrats have not gone through the legal and public process of debating and changing the criminal vagrancy laws, they just ignore them because they don’t like how the enforcement of those laws make them feel. What message does that send?
Add to this mix the ongoing policies in California cities to look the other way at graffiti and other vandalism laws as well as shrugging off whatever drug laws still remain, and the message continues to be sent: If the law doesn’t feel right, just ignore it.
Finally, the misguided Proposition 47 “criminal reforms” that were put in place several years ago made the theft of property valued at $950 or less a misdemeanor. At least in the case of this abomination, the proper process was employed rather than the Democrats’ usual practice of merely ignoring existing laws.
But, the proposition was passed with the typical deception of the dominant, one-party rule Democrats in Sacramento. Prop 47 was called “The Safe Neighborhood and Schools Act.” Who’s against safe neighborhoods and schools?
But, here’s what it did. It reduced the severity of the following laws to mere misdemeanors:
– Shoplifting, where the value of property stolen does not exceed $950
– Grand theft, where the value of the stolen property does not exceed $950
– Receiving stolen property, where the value of the property does not exceed $950
– Forgery, where the value of a forged check, bond or bill does not exceed $950
– Fraud, where the value of the fraudulent check, draft or order does not exceed $950
– Writing a bad check, where the value of the check does not exceed $950
The result is that already-taxed police forces are left unable to focus much energy or resources on chasing down these crimes because they are now “only” misdemeanors. The result? Criminals can rob with impunity as long as they keep the haul under $1,000. It turns out, crooks can add.
Add to those “reforms” the misguided policy of emptying prisons and jails at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the anarchy cake had been baked.
California Democrats’ platform relies on ignoring laws designed to keep a civilization orderly and law-abiding and they celebrate themselves for openly defying these basic rules of how to run a society. Years and years of this message has finally hit home with Californians.
If laws are inconvenient for Californians, just ignore them, and there will be no real repercussions. Next thing you know, the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica is looted and trashed.
Message sent. Message received. Mission accomplished.