This piece is good. and the comments reflect the intensity of the debate. I challenge Bay Area Citizens to take this issue on … seriously.
My comments on the matter are at the end of the piece in SF Appeal and I’m reproducing them here so they may be considered a plank of my platform:
re: BART Cop Jailed for Shooting Oscar Grant to Death Expected to Get Out of Jail Next Month
This piece is well written and significant because many in the mainstream press are either avoiding the topic or not addressing the emotions it brings up. I have been reading your blog a lot more recently as I campaign for Mayor and want to congratulate you on the editorial decision-making, the reporting and, as in this example, the flexible corrections, as necessary.
This is a space somewhere between the printed press and the wild world of blogging that The Bay Citizen so eagerly (and expensively) seeks. I would say you are succeeding at some level. keep up the good work.
“Shooting to Death Oscar Grant” states it clearly, correctly and brings up some very necessary dialogue.
It is important to note in this case that a jury of 12 found Mehserle guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter AND uniquely, the handgun charge. The handgun charge was a serious element here which could have led to policy changes such as the removal of lethal weapons like guns from BART cops. (they have Tasers and nightsticks and so on).
Instead it was thrown out unilaterally by the judge – which seems illegal to many. That’s what the riots ought to have been about. This was a profoundly wrong judgement. It’s too expensive for the family to pursue that on appeal, but it certainly ought to be the civic sector’s responsibility to make such a charge stick and to pursue such weird decision-making.
I, for one, believe we should disarm BART police. Let local PDs be called when a gun is necessary, make it a felony to carry a gun on BART and put excessive cameras in the system. We need to de-escalate the violence and the weaponry on our streets.