By CRAIG CAMPBELL
Civil liberties and representative government are dying in Anchorage, being taken away by despotic elitists determined to ruin our city by instituting progressive laws destructive to a healthy and safe community.
I submit as evidence Assembly member Meg Zaletel’s Ordinance #2020-80. Her ordinance proposed a series of restrictions on the Anchorage Police Department (APD) to provide “restrictions and limitations on APD Officers use of force in response to resistance in the Anchorage Municipal Code”, blah…blah…blah.
As my grand-dad would have said “Suffer’n cats…What blather.”
As a result of public outcry and a strong Back the Blue demonstration at the assembly chambers on Aug. 25th, the ordinance was postponed indefinitely.
Don’t for a minute think she has backed off on regulating our law enforcement officers from the political diose. This is just a bait-and-switch approach by the Assembly to get the same results using a different method. In fact, her next attack has an even more onerous objective.
Word is, Zaletel is going to introduce a resolution that directs proposed changes to APD policies and procedures be reviewed by the Public Safety Advisory Commission (PSAC).
Any PSAC recommendations would then go to the Assembly Public Safety Committee for adoption. Take a guess. Yes, Zaletel is on the Assembly Public Safety Committee.
Bingo, in fact it is a “committee of the whole.” I guess this just makes it easier for the Assembly to erode any opposition by having drawn out day meetings by the “committee” and wear down any opposition, before bringing to the Assembly for approval. I’ve seen this trick used before when I served on the Assembly.
But you say, it’s just a resolution, not an ordinance, so no big deal.
Hogwash! Under the municipal code resolutions can be directive. This resolution is just a backdoor approach to reaching the same goal that was offered in AO 202-80 to set up a process for the Anchorage Assembly to control changes to the APD Policy and Procedures manual.
And to rub salt in the wound, under municipal code, a resolution does not need a public hearing. Our comrades on the Assembly can implement this process without hearing from you.
Anchorage has one of the finest police departments in the nation, with the least amount of corruption and fewest number of bad-actor officers. It is one of the most transparent in existence, dedicated to protecting our community from bad stuff. If you don’t believe me, go to the APD web site and check it out yourself. Their Policy and Procedures Manual is available on-line.
As I have previously asked…What problem are you trying to fix, Assembly member Zaletel?
Zaletel has provided zero examples of excessive use of force by APD. As a person who has never served in the military or in law enforcement, she wants to regulate a well-run department with imprudent restrictions after having “community conversations in recent months about law enforcement in Anchorage.”
Let’s honestly discuss what she is trying to accomplish with her past ordinance and forthcoming resolution. She is dog-whistling to the progressive Left that Anchorage can be taken over by Marxists, starting with constraining law enforcement.
Anchorage must never become Portland, Oregon north.
If you don’t believe me, go back and look at the news from Aug. 25, 2020 where protesters against the police (wink, wink), in red shirts, with red flags (sort of reminds me of the Communist red of the Chinese and former USSR flags) demonstrated at the Loussac Library supporting her ordinance. Her sinister actions are clear and must be defeated!
“Political power, properly so called, is merely the organized power of one class for oppressing another.” ― Karl Marx
This is no game, folks. The radical Left is trying to fundamentally change our government. Hand-cuff the police, restrict the Second Amendment, curtail Freedom of Speech to only speech the Left approves, and finally establish a “one think” autocracy based solely on their values, not the collective values of the community.
Local elections are as important as state and national elections. Assembly members seriously interested in improving law enforcement should ride with the police during routine patrols (I did), listen to the officers on the street, and open a conversation with APD Chief Doll and the senior leadership of APD to learn ways they can positively contribute to improving our community by supporting our police officers.
Please stop trying to fix something that ain’t broke. This shameful attempt to over-regulate and micro-manage APD by the Assembly must be stopped and those Assembly members supporting it should be removed, either by recall or at their next election.
Craig E. Campbell served on the Anchorage Assembly from 1986 to 1995 and as lieutenant governor in 2009-2010. He was chief executive officer of the Alaska Aerospace Corporation and achieved the rank of lieutenant general (Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs), major general (Air National Guard).