RANTZ & RAVEZ-Thousands of political commercials on TV and radio will soon end and we will return to some degree of normalcy.
But now, as the Big Day approaches, we wait to see which way the country will go. On the national level, will it remain on the same track with President Trump in charge or move in a new direction with former Vice President Biden taking over the reins?
We will vote on many state and local measures, as well as for local school board members, judges and other issues that we will either support or reject. It’s in our hands. I encourage all of you to exercise your right to vote in this important election. Political lines have been drawn with great distinction unlike any other national election in most of our lifetimes. It is up to all of us to decide the future direction of our nation, state, and local communities.
As time ticks toward Election Day, there is much anticipation throughout America. For the past few days, Americans from coast to coast, and from all political parties have been voting for President, other candidates and various propositions and measures. This is the time in our society when we are free to express our concerns, hopes and wishes at the ballot box. This is a special moment when we have the freedom to decide the way we want elected leaders to manage our country, state, county, and city.
One thing that is unusual about the coming November 3 National Election is the concern we have for the safety of our families, businesses, and communities. For example, the Beverly Hills Police Department is closing Rodeo Drive to everyone and mobilizing department personnel just before the election. When law enforcement mobilizes, they deploy all personnel on 12-hour shifts in uniform. Beverly Hills is bringing in SWAT members from another jurisdiction and contracting with private security personnel to patrol commercial property in Beverly Hills. This is highly unusual for a national election.
In addition to Beverly Hills, the LAPD is gearing up the entire Department with all personnel informed that from November 2 through November 9, a “Special Event” has been declared. There may be modified hours and limited time off for everyone. If necessary, all personnel will be working in uniform on 12-hour shifts up to and following the election. When have you ever heard this concern for public safety during an election in America? I have been engaged in law enforcement for over 50 years and witnessed many national and local elections. I have never seen an election causing police personnel to work on a mobilization deployment, here in California or anywhere else in the country.
I suggest that you vote early to avoid any possible disruption or long lines at the numerous voting locations. We have all received ballots by mail and can vote by mail rather than going to a voting location.
Law enforcement is responsible to maintain the peace and tranquility throughout America. The motto “To Protect and Serve” represents the basics of law enforcement. There are groups and individuals that would like to intimidate you and cause fear in our society. We know what Antifa and other militant groups have done to intimidate people in cities across America.
There are published documents from radical left-wing groups that have posted battle plans to unleash mass chaos and attack Trump supporters in the streets if President Trump wins.
It is not my intention to frighten you or cause you and your family anxiety. But I hope you will use caution and be aware of the threats that have already been made by various groups during the time leading up to Election Day.
Is there a valid concern for your safety and that of your family? This may convince you that there is truly a legitimate concern by millions of Americans. Approximately two million guns have been sold in America since COVID-19 spread across America. In California, approximately 110,000 California residents have purchased a gun since the Coronavirus arrived. If you happen to go to a gun store, you will likely wait in line to enter the location. If you plan on purchasing a gun for the first time, you will take a test and if you pass, you can purchase a gun and wait at least 10 days to pick it up.
We are a well-armed society and that is a protection guaranteed by the 2nd Amendment. There are those who want to restrict and change gun ownership in America. As you can see, many Americans are concerned for their safety. They are troubled with the various anti-government movements across America. According to official reports, there are over 390 million guns currently in the hands of Americans.
Records for 2019 show that the American population is 328,239,523. More guns than people! Are you a gun owner prepared to protect yourself and your family while spinless elected officials defund police departments from California to New York? Like the LA City Council which cut $150 million dollars from the LAPD budget after Mayor Garcetti called police officers “killers?”
I will conclude with these words from Douglas MacArthur. . .“One cannot wage war under present conditions without the support of public opinion, that is tremendously molded by the press and other forms of propaganda.”
(Dennis P. Zine is a former and retired LAPD Supervisor, former and retired 12-year Los Angeles City Councilman and current General Manager at Bell Canyon in Ventura County.) Photo: Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times. Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.