I’ve spent a lot of time in Sacramento – the low-income areas, specifically. I can attest that the issues with the police department are serious. The whole thing is overly militarized. Those helicopters are used almost every day; they can have them anywhere in the city at any time.
Every day I watched black Americans get on and off at the courthouse stop. I saw systemic racism firsthand. Young black Americans. Black American women. Black American children. None had the means to extricate themselves from the cycle of court fees, “loitering” violations and probations. I ask: Who does this serve? This does not make me or my neighborhood safer or healthier.
I saw an unarmed private security guard detain an angry man in a 7/11 parking lot. He defused and controlled the situation (with physical force but no weapon) for 10 minutes until a cop arrived. No one was seriously harmed.
We can keep our cities and neighborhoods safe with nonlethal force. We can. I’ve seen it.
Tonight I’ll stand in my own back yard and feel perfectly safe. I’ll mourn Stephon Clark.
This is much more than a basketball game or an evening commute.
Stephon Clark matters.
Michael Iacoboni, Boise