By Tom Hunter
So, while DeMaio fiddles (with himself, actually) and while San Diego burns, some politicians in Sacramento were busy trying to pry the San Diego Police Department handcuffs off of our local roofless class. This is detailed in a seven-page listing of rights (because you can’t leave things like this to a Bonnie Dumanis type of imagination). To take a look at the final report in all of its glory, click here.
While Washington is trying to figure out who to blame for the coming disaster, some California legislators were busy with one of the biggest Civil Rights issues of our time. While the San Diego City Council was busy outlawing RVs on public streets, the California Legislature was busy telling them that what they were doing is against State of California Law.
So it has finally been put into law that it is perfectly legal to be poor, to work at Walmart and fall asleep in the bushes (on public property). It is legal to live in a legally registered vehicle (sorry Bonnie and friends).
Kind of makes you proud to be a Californian (if not particularly a San Diegan). And where is the rush to publish the good news? Nowhere that I have read. Filner can get into the Guardian, the Kardashians can get on every channel, but poor people’s rights just don’t show up on any editor’s radar. Of course, Fox leads must bleed and the witnesses that keep popping out against Filner are now 25 years in the past. I’m sure Gloria Allred will show up with some dead bodies soon.
This law was not written by ALEC, or the Koch brothers, or the Douglas of Manchester. Evidently, this law was written by politicians who decided to look up from the money being offered and go for the real gold. But that doesn’t do one thing to make the powers that be notice that the California State Legislature has slipped from their grip.
No doubt Dumanis is now aware of this law, though she will be in no hurry to enforce it as she’s been doing the opposite for so long that it’s a habit. And she knows that unless she calls off the dogs at the San Diego Police Department, they will not stand down. And why should they? The San Diego Prison Industrial Complex is a well-oiled machine that eats up vast amounts of the City and County budget.
But we can all bust out the champagne regardless. It’s the first time in my recollection that there is good news coming out of Sacramento!