Dear Paul Craig:
The part of you that I know is one of the highest quality persons to ever walk the open hallways of Main Street. However, you often hand down Zues-like edicts that are woefully uninformed.
“Criminal Justice” is the only oxymoron that is also a junior college degree. Why is the Police Chief in the Martinez Rotary Club? He could join Rotary where he lives. He has his own political ambitions which he has exposed repeatedly in ways you do not know. By communicating so much with Rotarians, our Police Chief is taking orders from a small group of people who consider themselves elite for one reason or another and this is extremely dangerous to American Freedoms (aka the Constitution).
Rotarians are not some morally or intellectually elite group. Rather, they are wealthy people and/or people who somehow made their way into high bureaucratic positions. Let us take Jim Kennedy as an example. When he was head of County Community Development (and the president of California Redevelopment Agency), he got Rob Shroder’s friend $1.4 million in HUD funds for Berrellesa Palms property. No one cared about the homeless then, but they did care about having the power and money of a Redevelopment Agency, and Rob Shroder’s friend was key. In order to get these federal funds, what is the Italian neighborhood (whose history is now on the National Register of Historic Places) had to be called non-historic. This calculated misinformation was told by Jim Kennedy with the help of our Historic Society, including Harriett Burt who perpetuated it on Planning Commission. Several of us who publicly resisted this found ourselves, in part by Jim Kennedy urging the Martinez Police to do so, the subject of investigations including being recorded by the police as to what our intentions were and multiple red tags to our homes by code enforcement.
I do not have room to describe here, but this type of politically motivated police misconduct and violation of Constitutional rights has occurred under Martinez Police Chiefs and continues under Sappal. People who have not committed crimes are harassed and falsely accused and investigated because Sappal deems the accuser more politically powerful than the accused. Meanwhile, crimes such as growing and distributing marijuana near a high school, drug and alcohol charges, false legal testimony, and other crimes continue freely among the politically favored and their relations with no consequences.
AnaMarie Farias’ recent political grandstanding that resulted in a new police ordinance that gives free rein and resources to ILLEGAL immigrants is an example. Farias and McKillop, on Council, were/are known to manipulate the police against people and falsely accuse multiple people of senior abuse and other crimes.
Now the “homeless” will be listed in a database so they can receive “services.” Paul, there is not enough services for even a fraction of the homeless. Making this list is really code for “get the poor out of sight so we do not have to think about how wealth is polarizing in this country.” And once someone is deemed “mentally ill” and/or “homeless”, all Constitutional rights go out the window: unlawful search and seizure, privacy and warrant violations, displacement, false arrest, etc. It comes down to the 14th Amendment: Equal Protection Under the Law (for actual citizens). Rights you – in your big house on the hill and Rotary Club – will always get to take for granted. It will not be the first time in history that people are put on lists and then trucked off. I am surprised as a self proclaimed staunch liberal you promote these policies.
What happens to this list? What if the person is no longer “homeless” but the police think s/he is? Paul, do you know the national police brutality and morbidity rates for the treatment of those the police, with their limited education, deem (even without evidence) “homeless” and/or “mentally ill”? Since you have a PhD and a moral soul, I urge you to research this.
– Kristin Henderson