Recall that yesterday I received a huge stack of records comprising emails and other materials from various LAPD officers, other City officials, and some property owners having to do mostly with homeless issues on Skid Row. The whole set is available here on Archive.Org.
I wrote one long post about it yesterday and will write some others soon enough, but today I thought I would tell you about a few short episodes that probably can’t support a whole post but are really interesting nonetheless. There’s no theme, no subtext, no larger purpose, no moral. Nothing but gossip, really, but interesting!
Return of Safer Cities? Gita O’Neill calls Deon Joseph “Articulate”
And evidently present Chief Michael Moore is in favor of reviving this zombie jive crapola as well. At least that’s the frightening message found in this June 2018 email conversation between Deputy City Attorney Gita O’Neill and high LAPD muckety Marc Reina. And it’s not the only frightening thing in there. Here’s how O’Neill describes to Reina the role of Joseph, who is African American: “deon asked the question [about Safer Cities] to the chief, deon was very articulate”
And “articulate” is a problematic word indeed. As the New York Times said in 2007 after Joe Biden caused a scandal by calling Barack Obama articulate, when the word is used “in reference to blacks, it often carries a subtext of amazement, even bewilderment. It is similar to praising a female executive or politician by calling her “tough” or “a rational decision-maker.” “When people say it, what they are really saying is that someone is articulate … for a black person,” Ms. Perez1 said. Such a subtext is inherently offensive because it suggests that the recipient of the “compliment” is notably different from other black people. So, you know, evidently that’s what Gita O’Neill thinks of Deon Joseph.
Watch and listen here as Kerry Morrison quotes Sheila Kuehl blaming the L.A. County Supervisors’ utter failure to solve our homelessness problem on the fact that the Brown Act requires them to hold open meetings and conduct their deliberations in public (full transcript after the break as always). The message essentially is that the Supervisors can’t get anything done if they have to do it when people are watching. This kind of attitude is, of course, the reason we have to have a Brown Act in the first place. Kerry Morrison’s statements are hearsay, and it’s just as likely that Kerry Morrison, in the throes of her fever dreams of a Hollywood Reich, delusionally attributed this sentiment to Kuehl. We’ll never know at this point.
Readers of this blog are probably pretty familiar with the Brown Act’s requirements. They essentially say that the Supervisors can’t discuss legislative action in secret. They have to do it in public meetings.1 The law doesn’t restrict the kinds of things they can talk about, it doesn’t restrict the kinds of deals they can make with one another or with third parties. It only requires them to conduct their deliberations and decision-making in public.
So Kerry Morrison’s version of Sheila Kuehl’s position is disconcerting. She claims that Kuehl claims that the Brown Act prevents the Supervisors from eliminating homelessness because “…they can’t converse with each other. You can’t horse-trade votes. … You know, so you can’t collaborate, you know, can we all agree on what we’re all gonna…you have to do it all in open session, and it’s very cumbersome…” The idea seems to be that the supervisors can’t have an honest discussion in public, so they can’t have any discussion at all.
In the last two weeks, two cataclysmic changes in the the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority‘s mission have made it, in not just our opinion but in the opinion of any sane observer, impossible for Kerry Morrison to ethically continue to serve as both a LAHSA Commissioner and the executive directrix of the HPOA. Since as of a few years ago she was earning $192,794 per annum1 from the HPOA we’re guessing it’s not that job she’s gonna quit. What happened is this: both the Los Angeles City Council and the Department of Housing and Urban Development are poised to ask LAHSA to (a) decide where across the city to locate service centers for the homeless and (b) to stop breaking up homeless encampments.