Fund the police

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

To the editor,

Remember the “Defund the Police” movement last summer?

As a political independent and moderate liberal who had supported national Democratic Party campaigns for Obama, Hillary Clinton, and most recently Tulsi Gabbard, I was opposed to “Defund the Police.”

In July 2020, I was recruited by a leading national Democratic Party (DP) polling firm to participate in a focus group via Zoom, but I could not participate because of scheduling conflicts. Along with several other DP polling firms, this firm was testing alternatives to the language of Defund the Police. What emerged from these July focus groups was the recommendation to replace Defund with Reimagine. By mid-August, we could see leading national Democrats such as Kamala Harris saying “Reimagine the Police” on a daily basis.

No matter how the Regressive-Progressive Wing of the Democratic Party repackaged “Defund the Police,” the policy prescription was the same: slash the budgets of police.

Back in June, my Tribune letter raised these questions: “Why do BLM and its Democratic Party supporters such as Cortez and Omar advocate defunding the public police? What would be the consequences of defunding, especially in poor, black (and white) urban areas? To what extent do white (and black) wealthy progressives (think Hollywood wealthy elites) continue to rely on private police (private security guards)? What are the consequences of defunding the public police for these Hollywood elites (and multi-millionaire politicians like Democratic Party leader Nancy Pelosi)?”

The defunding of public police had real world consequences, which included spikes in violent crime in progressive cities such as Minneapolis, Seattle, New York, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, to note only a few.

Now the Minneapolis City Council has created a special $6.4 million fund to recruit new police, given the rise in violent crime.

Most likely, other cities who defunded the police will soon increase their police budgets, given the rise of violent crime.

Even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is no longer publicly advocating Defund the Police.

Randy Piper