Town Square

Post a New Topic

In effort to reform policing, experts call adoption of 8 Can't Wait platform 'inadequate'

Original post made on Jul 18, 2020

The city of Palo Alto's prospective adoption of the 8 Can't Wait platform for police reform was met with significant skepticism last week from a panel of experts, who said that such a move would be inadequate for the task at hand.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, July 17, 2020, 9:15 PM

Comments (13)

15 people like this
Posted by Dad of frontline healthcare worker
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 18, 2020 at 12:08 pm

In agreement with, "Police inherently are not a de-escalating institution” after a “neighbor” called the Police on our family when our 15mon old child had a day of extended crying. I felt so low and sad that a “neighbor” could shame our family through the use of the Police. The Police duties should be limited to extreme situations where the use of force “may” be needed.


16 people like this
Posted by TimR
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 18, 2020 at 8:15 pm

The homeless people with mental health issues is getting a little out of control downtown, and I agree, the police shouldn't have to deal with them. So, where are the proposals for how to death with them effectively instead? Although, the PAPD did successfully arrest a half-naked crazy man from the street in front of my house last Thursday night. So they are capable, when the city council drops the ball and refuses to deal with it properly. It's shameful how so many at City Hall are now blaming the police for a problem that's their own fault.


9 people like this
Posted by Make Force Rare
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 18, 2020 at 9:41 pm

It's not just mental health issues which need a non-armed response. The bulk of violation-level stuff doesn't need police either; there's no added value to having somebody with body armor and a gun showing up to write a report about a smash-and-grab when the perpetrator is long since gone. The same goes for routine traffic stops.

Actual armed response should be reserved for when a non-armed response fails, or where there is an immediate threat to life.


41 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 19, 2020 at 7:19 am

Police are fine. It's ironic that our radical city leaders aren't doing enough to please the ultraradical. Stop letting these ultraradicals take over. Do not be cowed!


39 people like this
Posted by John
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 19, 2020 at 8:19 am

@make force rare- you seem to believe that police are the drivers behind force being used. They’re not. Force is used only to overcome resistance effect an arrest or in self defense. Your utopian ideas of taking action “after a non-armed response fails” doesn’t take into account the death or injuries suffered during that non-armed response.


52 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 19, 2020 at 12:21 pm

"As part of an effort to respond to public outrage about police brutality and systemic racism nationwide...."

False.

First of all, there is no "systemic racism" in law enforcement in Palo Alto or, statistically speaking, in the nation as a whole. While there is always room for reform (particularly in terms of using violent force against non-violent offenders who aren't a threat), the police in Palo Alto and law enforcement officers around the country in general largely do a great job under difficult circumstances.

We should no more stereotype, generalize or caricature law enforcement because of the acts of a very small number of bad apples than anyone should stereotype, generalize or caricature racial-ethnic or religious minorities because of the acts of a very small number of bad examples.

Secondly, the "outrage" isn't entirely public. While most people can unify behind the understanding that what happened to George Floyd was wrong, the public push by activist groups and organizations is not reflective of society as a whole (or even a majority of the whole).

While many of us sympathize with the cause or support certain aspects of what they want to accomplish, many of us also disagree with the demands that certain figures are making. We also strongly disagree with the caricatures of law enforcement that have been painted.

Racism is evil. The irony is that this truth is largely shared by almost everyone (aside from the small number of actual racists). Yes, stereotypes, generalizations and caricatures exist. However, they aren't overcome by, in turn, stereotyping, generalizing and caricaturing law enforcement.


21 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 20, 2020 at 7:29 am

Fascinating how an anonymous poster like Nayeli can offer a concise, respectful, reasoned, and well-balanced analysis in contrast to the partisan coverage of Embarcadero Media. You'd think they should have her write the article -- that's what journalists used to sound like -- cool, rational and objective.

In Portland, Oregon we can see what happens if you let the anti-police zealots have their way. They have elected a true ultra-radical in Jo Ann Hardesty. She is trying to wrest control from the Mayor of Portland (who apparently isn't anti-police enough), and she just strongarmed the Fire Department into cutting off the Police Department because they dared to work with Trump's feds. All they did was disperse rioters who were damaging a federal courthouse and setting a police station on fire -- should they just step aside and let the entire city go up in flames?

[Portion removed.]


2 people like this
Posted by Not Nayeli
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jul 20, 2020 at 11:48 am

"Racism is evil. The irony is that this truth is largely shared by almost everyone (aside from the small number of actual racists). Yes, stereotypes, generalizations and caricatures exist. However, they aren't overcome by, in turn, stereotyping, generalizing and caricaturing law enforcement."

This belief is the epitome of privileged complacency. If you disagree, FIRST please watch John Oliver's piece on the history of Police Departments. Please educate yourself. Selfish beliefs like these are part of the problem.

SECOND It's on people like this to take meaningful time out of a privileged life to learn what anti-racism even means. Another problem is silent and passive support of a system that slowly suffocates/destroys black lives.

If this makes you uncomfortable - invest in understanding WHY, today, tomorrow, and the next day -instead of blinding supporting the comfortable status quo.


20 people like this
Posted by Stepheny
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 20, 2020 at 11:54 am

No jobs, no school, no travel and a beautiful day locally. Protestors might as well stroll around with some signs and possibly cause trouble out of boredom.

If they did seek a positive change, they should go help a food bank, repair or build a home with Habitat for Humanity.

Signs without positive action are meaningless and accomplish nothing. You demean your cause.


25 people like this
Posted by John
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 20, 2020 at 12:52 pm

@not nayeli- when you get your talking points from late night comedians and regurgitate talking points about non-existent systemic racism, don’t expect to be taken seriously.


31 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 20, 2020 at 3:29 pm

@ "Not Nayeli:" I find it fascinating how some people will accuse others of embracing some mythical "privileged complacency." I didn't grow up in privilege (quite the opposite actually). I am not complacent.

I was born into privilege. I am not white. I wasn't even born in this country. If you want to see "corrupt police," then I invite you to visit Mexico. Not only does systemic racism and class disadvantage exist, but there are other problems that are systemic from top to bottom in every level of law enforcement throughout Mexico.

What you dismiss as "selfish" is validated by statistical evidence. I don't need a partisan comedian to preach to me about the history of police departments when I am quite aware of the current trends of crime, punishment and police activity.

The point is that there is no systemic racism in either the Palo Alto Police Department or with law enforcement in general. All of the marches, signs and repetitive claims don't alter the facts.

If there WAS systemic racism with police throughout America, I would call it out. However, since it isn't systemic -- and since well-informed people listen to facts rather than hysteria -- I am confident that the latest attempt at a coup d'etat against our nation's law enforcement agencies will end with yet another whimper.


1 person likes this
Posted by Midtown Local
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 20, 2020 at 7:12 pm

Agree with the article that 8 Can't Wait is just a start, and that accountability is key. Palo Alto's policies have been closely aligned to what they should be, but they're not consistently followed.
We're not getting accurate and complete reports and recent videos show the opposite of deescalation.

To the people who are claiming that there's no systemic racism in Palo Alto's police department: Is it a coincidence that both of the high-profile excessive force incidents were against Hispanics? That the people who recount stories of ongoing harassment happen to be Black? C'mon.


27 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 20, 2020 at 9:26 pm

@Midtown Local asked, "Is it a coincidence that both of the high-profile excessive force incidents were against Hispanics?"

Actually, the fact that they were Hispanics had NOTHING to do with their arrests (or the manner in which they were arrested). Rather, the commonality in both cases is that both suspects had awful criminal records; and, both whined and antagonized law enforcement while they resisted arrest.

As a Hispanic woman and an immigrant, I am annoyed when I see convicted criminals (or individuals engaging in criminal behavior) victimize Palo Alto residents and businesses and then complain about when force is used while they resist arrest.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

In order to encourage respectful and thoughtful discussion, commenting on stories is available to those who are registered users. If you are already a registered user and the commenting form is not below, you need to log in. If you are not registered, you can do so here.

Please make sure your comments are truthful, on-topic and do not disrespect another poster. Don't be snarky or belittling. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

See our announcement about requiring registration for commenting.


Get important election coverage sent straight to your inbox daily.

Former Flea St. Cafe chef starts meal delivery service
By Elena Kadvany | 1 comment | 6,905 views

10 ways to reduce your dog's "pawprint"
By Sherry Listgarten | 9 comments | 4,482 views

Why can't high schoolers write?
By Jessica Zang | 13 comments | 2,748 views

"Plant an Expectation, Reap a Disappointment"
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 1,899 views

'Ignoring what's wrong has never made anything right'
By Diana Diamond | 4 comments | 1,273 views

 

Benefiting local non-profits

The 36th annual Moonlight Run and Walk is Friday evening, October 2, wherever you are! Proceeds go to the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund, benefiting local non-profits that serve families and children in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties. Join us under the light of the full Harvest Moon on a 5K walk, 5K run, 10K run or half marathon.

Register Today!