About the editor: Democrat Karen Bass is my representative in Congress. I voted for her in 2020 and would happily do it again. However, being Mayor of Los Angeles requires different skills, and I haven’t decided on the mayoral race just yet.
The Times article on her failure to garner full support from “the left” quotes Melina Abdullah and Patrisse Cullors (described as longtime leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement) as Bass’ “pandering to wealthy white people Denouncing Westside and Valley voters at the expense of “Black, Latinx and working class people.”
As one of those white Westside liberals, I have to laugh at their arrogance and presumption.
First, polls I’ve seen over the past few years show very little support among black voters for the idea of ”defunding” the police, if that means eliminating the police or even reducing the crimes that officers respond to; and second, that the term “Latinx” is rarely used among Latinos.
I could be wrong, but I don’t think Cullors and Abdullah speak for a significant segment of the electorate.
Andrew E. Rubin, Los Angeles
About the editor: After the 2020 killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis officer, as well as other civil rights abuses and police violence against black people, I, too, thought we should disappoint the police.
I was wrong. Now I agree with Bass that we shouldn’t disappoint the police. We really should hire more police officers.
My Citizen app beeps crime in my south Los Angeles neighborhood all day. For those who advocate for defunding the police, I often wonder where they live. Who do you suggest to call instead of the police? The local gang leaders?
Bass is realistic about crime and the police, and she should be the next mayor of Los Angeles.
Rosilyn Clayton, Los Angeles
About the editor: As a lifelong Democrat, I’m glad to hear that the “progressive critics” who have denounced Bass’s sane approach to the homeless crisis have not hurt her campaign for mayor.
Obviously, some homeless camps pose a high risk to outreach workers. Without the police protection Bass proposed, it would only be a matter of time before an outreach worker would be assaulted, maimed or killed.
Bass should stand his ground and ask, “Why should we refuse protection to our outreach workers in the city when they work for the good of all of us, housed or not?”
Critics of the sort mentioned in the article should read the January 28 article by David Lauter of The Times: “Progressives mislead themselves about the popularity of their schemes.” As this phenomenon plays out at the national level, it plays out at the local level in a similar way.
If these critics force Bass or any other candidate to adopt their policies, they could wake up the day after the election to find that the new mayor is someone whose policies are even further removed from the “progressive” positions their candidates advocate should accept.
Michael Krumme, Los Angeles
https://www.latimes.com/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/story/2022-03-17/karen-bass-defund-the-police Karen Bass knows that “disappointing the police” is a fringe idea