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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Oakland City Leaders Are Picking Marijuana Over Murders, Chronicle Columnist Says

Posted By on Tue, Jul 17, 2012 at 9:35 AM

Based on this photo, do you think Mayor Quan is high?
  • Based on this photo, do you think Mayor Quan is high?

What the hell are Oakland city leaders smoking these days?

As the Chron's Chip Johnson astutely notes this week, Oakland city leaders' priorities are completely ass backwards, as evidenced by their reaction to the two biggest news stories in the last few weeks -- you know, the ones involves pot clubs and murders.

When the news broke that five people were shot at the popular Jack London Square movie theater in Oakland, city officials didn't seem to flinch; Mayor Jean Quan wouldn't even answer reporters questions about incident, Johnson explains.

Fast forward a few news cycles, when Oakland City Hall learned that Harborside Health Center, the state's largest pot club, which happens to be right here in Oakland, was on the outs, well that sure was alarming enough to organize a campaign and a press appearance among city leaders.

Surprised? Nope. Worried? Very.

As Johnson puts it:

When the closure of a pot club gets an immediate response from City Hall, but a killing each day for a week doesn't, it casts serious doubts on the city's ability to get its priorities straight.... It's pretty hard to take seriously the mayor's commitment to reducing violent crime when she's ducking basic questions about crime in the city. It makes her look disingenuous and weak and ineffective.
Now Oakland City Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan tells Johnson that she attended the press conference about the pot club closure simply because it was a chance to address the need for more cops on the streets. She said a press conference about a pot club will draw crowds that a community meeting won't. So that's her excuse.

"My entire purpose was not to say we should spend more time on the dispensaries, but that those resources [including federal law enforcement] need to be focused on stopping the gun violence and stopping the gun flow coming in from out of state," Kaplan said.

Great. So who wants to catch a movie this weekend in Oakland?

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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