Chip Johnson’s column over at the SF Chronicle is starting to become a regular read for me. I like reading Chip because he has the balls to publicly call “Do Nothing” “Soft of Crime” Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums to the mat for his atrocious job performance as the absentee mayor of Oakland.
This week Chip chronicles Mayor Dellums (very busy, work, work work) week of ineptitude as residents of our fine City of Oakland continue to die in the streets.
Some choice quotes:
“Later on Monday, another man was gunned down – the eighth slaying in four days. In the six weeks since the start of the year, 21 people have been slain in Oakland.
It would seem that a string of events like that would grab the attention of a responsible CEO – and it would. The problem is that Oakland’s self-described CEO has been neither responsive nor responsible, and it seems he has more important business.”
“But when Dellums is traveling, residents can rest easy knowing that the city’s bureaucracy, led by City Administrator Deborah Edgerly, is in charge.
On the heels of the city’s eighth homicide in four days, Edgerly’s office announced that the city, in response to complaints from local florists, would enforce a zero-tolerance policy on illegal street vendors on Valentine’s Day.
Police officers and city employees would be assigned to foot patrols and issue citations to any street vendor without a permit, she said. Some police officers shook their heads, while others just laughed. Leaders in the business community were speechless.”
“The strain of Dellums’ absences and his continued failure to act when action is what’s needed are starting to converge in a decidedly non-harmonic way.
The majority of the eight-person Oakland City Council admits there is no relationship, coordination or communication between them and Dellums’ office.
One council member persuaded “shot-callers” within the city’s street drug trade to meet with Dellums to discuss ways to curb the violence but has been unable to schedule the meeting for more than a month.”
“”He’s just never around,” said the council member, who spoke on condition of anonymity.”
“Brown remains reluctant to meet with Dellums – and be put on the spot to deliver – until someone within Oakland City Hall presents him with a plan on how any additional state officers would be used in the city.
He is a bit incredulous after offering his agency’s help to analyze the city’s backlog of fingerprints and receiving not even a return phone call from Dellums’ office.”
The bottom line is that Mayor Dellums is not doing anything serious about crime in Oakland. As people are killed weekly in Oakland’s streets, the only thing Dellums seems to be willing to do about it are 1. Promise to hire more cops and 2. Blame George Bush (convenient given that he seems to be spending more time campaigning for Hillarious Clinton than working on the crime problem he was elected to try and fix in Oakland).
Already this year we’ve had a 10 year old boy paralyzed for life at music school by a stray bullet (a music school a few blocks from my house where my son has taken music lessons). We’ve had a few guys gunned down in broad daylight around the corner from where I park my car at MacArthur BART. We’ve had a mother gunned down while she held her infant child in her arms in her own home. Etc. Etc. In total we’ve had over 21 people gunned down dead in Oakland so far since the beginning of the year.
On top of that people are assaulted, raped, robbed at gunpoint, or burglarized, pretty much on a daily basis.
The felon, Jared Adams, who paralyzed the 10 year old by my house last month was sentenced to 6 months (yes, only 6 months!) in jail for his last stint in court after multiple previous convictions (including a previous illegal weapons conviction). And then we are supposed to act surprised when he gets out and guns down somebody new? You can thank Alameda Superior Court Judge Leo Dorado (by the way) for giving Jared Adams such a light sentence.
Do Nothing Mayor Dellums needs to clear his calendar of Hillarious Clinton campaign commitments (why she has one of the worst Mayors in America as her Advisor on urban issues is beyond me and only points to her own ineptitude) and focus on cleaning up crime in Oakland.
Specifically, Dellums needs to.
1. Declare “War on Crime” a “Crime Emergency” a “Crime Crisis” whatever you want to call it in Oakland. A few weeks ago I suggested that he put an emergency panel together to oversee this “War on Crime” that would include people like former SF police Chiefs Alex Fagan and Frank Jordan as well as Attorney General Jerry Brown (who apparently has offered man power and officers to help Dellums on his back up of fingerprint investigations but who can’t seem to get his calls returned by Dellums).
2. Lobby for and advocate a policy of life in prison for anyone caught with an illegal gun in the city of Oakland. These illegal guns are *killing* people Mr. Mayor. As he lobbies for this he should also consider adopting Project Exile and sending people who are caught with illegal guns to the Federal Court system where they will spend more time in jail. (Good luck with this of course because critics claim that sending people with illegal guns to longer prison terms locks up more black people). Personally I don’t care if you are black, white, Asian, Hispanic, American Indian or from the hinterlands of Outer Mongolia. If you have an illegal gun, I want you locked up.
3. Adopt several measures seen in other cities like Philadelphia and Los Angeles including a “stop and frisk” program, more surveillance cameras in high crime areas, putting curfews in place in high crime neighborhoods and cracking down on street “gatherings” in high crime neighborhoods.
Rather than flying off to DC to give speeches at American University which “coincidently” coincided with Hillarious Clinton’s primary election in DC earlier this week, Dellums should be back in Oakland getting tough on crime.
The graphic above which shows all of the major reported crime in Oakland in the past month is sad. But what’s even sadder is that our absentee “do nothing” Mayor won’t do a damn thing about it. Rather than try to get guns off the street, Mayor Dellums would rather try to use valuable resources to hassle street vendors. Unbelievable really.