Speaking in City Hall on Tuesday, Mayor London Breed said that it’s time to be more “aggressive with the changes in our policies” and to end the “reign of criminals” in the high-crime Tenderloin area.
On Tuesday, the San Fransisco Police Department assigned to the Tenderloin posted shocking crime statistics for that past week, which included the department seizing more than 950 grams of drugs, including over 600 grams of the synthetic opioid fentanyl. The department also seized more than $3,400 in drug money in the past seven days, plus confiscated three knives and a taser and arrested 17 dealers.
In the past month, there were six shootings, plus 16 assaults and batteries in Tenderloin, along with other crimes.
Crime has become “far too normal, and cannot be tolerated,” said Mayor Breed in an impassioned speech, in which she spoke of the nasty streets full of faeces and urine that the Department of Public Works cleans up every day. The mayor said she had been speaking to families who live in the area.
“Just imagine if you had to walk your kids through the Tenderloin every day, past people shooting up, doing drugs and because the sidewalks are so packed with people you had to walk out onto the street into oncoming traffic on a regular basis,” she said.
The mayor laid out plans that included making sure there is adequate lighting and surveillance in the area so law enforcement can interrupt crime in real-time, she also plans to clamp down on the illegal sale of stolen goods on the streets of the neighbourhood, which she is sure is “incentivising the break-ins and robberies like the ones we have seen in stores and small businesses throughout the city.”
Police are to work with social workers to shut down open drug scenes explained the mayor.
“What I am proposing will make a lot of people uncomfortable, and I don’t care,” said the mayor, “the safety of the people of San Fransisco is the most important thing to me – we are past the point of what we see is even remotely acceptable”.
The mayor’s move has been backed by Democrats and Republicans: “It’s outrageous,” said Democrat speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on the robberies in San Fransisco, “I agree with the mayor, it has to be stopped. We cannot have that lawlessness become the norm.”
Author Michael Shellenberger, who wrote the book San Fransicko: Why Progressives Ruin Cities, tweeted “SF Mayor @LondonBreed has literally just called bulls**t on progressive criminal justice reformers.”
He also tweeted a number of responses to critics of harsher punishments for those who are drug dependent. “Critics of San Francisco Mayor @LondonBreed claim that policing and jails never work anywhere to address drug addiction and dealing but that’s ridiculous: nearly every developed nation arrests drug dealers and addicts and incarcerates them or mandates treatment,” he tweeted.
“London Breed was forced to recognise today that the city is falling apart,” sniped Tucker Carlson on Fox News.
“The woke are waking up,” said another user on Twitter.