VIEW FROM HERE-Ivan Petrovich Pavlov (1849-1936) is the patron saint of both the Dem and GOP parties. Just as Pavlov taught his dogs to salivate at the sound of a bell, both parties use meaningless memes to elicit reflective responses from their faithful.
One current Dem meme is the word Equity. Upon hearing the sound, people instantly nod in agreement, murmuring, “Yes we must have Equity.”
What is Equity?
It sounds so nice. Who can be against fairness? Dictionary definitions, however, are not real life. For politicos, a crucial component of Equity is placing people of the right color, ethnicity, or gender into positions of power on the specious premise that a system of numerical quotas in decision making will improve society. That is bunk!
The Real Problem – Predatory Vulturization
People’s lives do not become better when the hue of their oppressor’s skin is darker or lighter. Barack Obama did not improve the lot of Blacks and Trump has made life worse for Whites. Obama gave $14 trillion to banks and let the middle class of all colors go into bankruptcy. Trump’s insanity allowed a virus to needlessly kill hundreds of thousands, many of whom were his most ardent supporters.
Skin color, ethnicity, and gender do not guard against an individual’s following bad policies or against being a vulture. Let’s take look-see at California where minorities have been abused by the criminal justice system since forever. Black Lives Matter (BLM) had to have the female Black Los Angeles County District Attorney, Jacie Lacey, replaced by an old white guy, George Gascon, because under Jackie Lacey the DA’s office was entrenched in abuse of everyone but especially Blacks and Hispanics. BLM rejected the Equity meme and did not pretend the correct skin color would result in a non-predatory system. As BLM has said, the problems are systemic and there will be no improvement for Blacks or anyone else in the criminal justice system unless its vulturine policies are eradicated.
Kamala Harris, Queen of the Lying Jailhouse Informants, (whom we discussed in the last issue) was San Francisco’s DA from 2004 to 2011 and she was California’s chief law enforcement officer (Attorney General) from 2011 to 2017, yet the victimization of criminal defendants did not abate.
Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court since 2011 is not only female, but also primarily of Filipino descent. Under her tutelage, the California judiciary has been described as having an “epidemic of misconduct” by Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski. Judge Kozinski was thereafter removed from the bench after he also criticized AG Harris’ predaceous conduct.
Our Society’s Lethally Predatory Behavior Is Not Limited to Law Enforcement
Let’s look at Los Angeles City Council. Its balance of races, ethnicities and sexual orientations has resulted in a criminal enterprise which has preyed upon all Angelenos including Hispanics and Blacks. The current mayor, Eric Garcetti, started his tenure as councilmember for council district 13. Garcetti is a mini-United Nations all by himself. He is a Jewish, Italian, Mexican trust fund baby. His predecessor was the skirt chasing Antonio Villaraigosa,
Mitch O’Farrell, current CD 13 councilmember and Garcetti’s mini-me, sounds like he has a touch of the Irish, but he hastens to tell everything he is also Native American and bolsters his Woker bona fides by being Gay. Nury Martinez zoomed to city council president in order to compensate for too few females on the city council. Defrocked councilmember Jose Huizar, who became too greedy in his appropriation of an undue share of developer largess, is of Hispanic origin. Huizar should have heeded the lesson of Ramparts police officer Raphael Perez who took more than his share of drugs from the Ramparts evidence locker and didn’t leave enough for his fellow officers. (Hence, the Ramparts Scandal.)
LA City Council has its gaggle of Black councilmembers, most famous of whom is probably former city council President Herb Wesson. LA has had Asian councilmembers. Remember Hollywood’s Mike Woo (1985-1993)? More recently, there was David Ryu (Korean) who was replaced by female Asian Nithya Raman and there is Mike Lee in the North Valley. But no one cares if he’s a Lee with ancestors from Virginia or China.
How has LA Fared with its Equity Representation?
Los Angeles has gone from the nation’s most desirable destination city to the least desirable urban area with its population trending downward for decades. This equity city has the worse US GINI Coefficient. It has manufactured the most egregious homeless crisis in the nation in order to make a small cadre of developers fabulously wealthy. Despite its equity composition, the LA City Council is a predatory criminal enterprise which operates in open defiance of Penal Code, § 86. Its rapacious nature is out of control. The only time they call in the authorities is when someone like Jose Huizar takes too big a piece of the corruption pie. They even have a nice state court ruling that the city council’s actions are “non-judiciable” which means “above the law.” According to Superior Court Judge Richard Fruin’s December 2016 decision, the city council does not even have to follow its own rules.
Equity Has Been Disastrous Elsewhere
On what seems like a planet far, far away sits Rochester, New York, on the dismal south shore of Lake Ontario at the mouth of the Genesee River. After Daniel Prude, a Black man with mental disorders, was killed by the Rochester PD, the some “wokers” blamed white supremacy for his death. Rochester, however, is a minority-run city. If equity in government resulted in good policies, Rochester would not be a basket case. City Mayor Lovely Warren (2013-present) is a Black female. (She and her husband are under criminal indictments.)
City Vice Mayor Willie J. Lightfoot is a Black male. Rochester police chief Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan is a Black female; prior police chief La'Ron Singletary is a Black male; before that, the police chief was James Sheppard (210-2013), a Black male. Mark Simmons, a Black male, has twice been interim chief.
President of city council Loretta C. Scott is a Black female and Vice president Malik D. Evans (Bd Pres 2008-2013) is a Black male. Councilmember Miguel A. Meléndez is Hispanic; Councilmember LaShay D. Harris is a Black female; Councilmember Mary Lupien is a White female; Councilmember Michael A. Patterson is a Black male; Councilmember Jose Peo is ostensibly a Hispanic male. (There are no WASPs, but Mitchell Gruber is Jewish.)
Likewise, the Rochester NY School Board members are all Equity: Black, Hispanic, or female. The school district rates a D+ in academics but an A- in Diversity (Equity).
People Should Stop Responding to the Equity Bell as If it Signaled Something Good
The real problem is that we are a predatory people with vulturine institutions. Until we heed BLM’s call to end our institutional systemic abuse, placing minority predators in charge will not improve our lives.
(Richard Lee Abrams has been an attorney, a Realtor and community relations consultant as well as a CityWatch contributor. The views expressed herein are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of CityWatch. You may email him at RickLeeAbrams@Gmail.com)