VOICES: River City, Episode 78: California Sheriff’s Departments are Gangs, California Democrats are Weak

On Tuesday, Sacramento County residents watched District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert partake in active voter suppression by fighting against a common-sense move to add a ballot measure in the November elections to allow voters to decide if they should move countywide elections (DA, sheriff, assessor) to presidential years. The reasoning Schubert gave was that it was being pushed too quickly and deserved public input. But we all know the real reason.

More people vote in presidential years. And when more people vote, monsters like Sheriff Scott Jones (and Schubert) lose. Democrat Don Nottoli, ever the clown, sided with the two Republicans on the board to shelve the proposal.

But Don’s not the only Democratic weakling on that dais. Patrick Kennedy sided with his GOP colleagues when people tried to move some BoS meetings to evenings so that more community members could participate. How dare working people get a chance to speak their piece? Oh, and both Nottoli and Kennedy approved of an exorbitant budget for the county sheriff’s department, which repeatedly pays tens of millions for its deputies’ violent, erratic behavior.

But as we all know, bad sheriffing isn’t specific to Sacramento County. As Los Angeles Times columnist Erika Smith pointed out recently, the LA County sheriff regularly acts with impunity, sprinkling in sexist language when he can. And two years ago the sheriff of rural Trinity County up and moved to Oregon in the middle of his term, because he didn’t like how the board of supervisors wanted him to handle cannabis regulation.

One possible answer for these awful sheriff’s is Assemblymember Kevin McCarty’s AB 1185, which is designed to provide an oversight apparatus with teeth over sheriff’s departments throughout the state.

A stronger message would be to defund these violent, erratic sheriff’s departments, but we won’t argue against this bill. 

Thanks for listening and, as always:

Patreon: patreon.com/voicesrivercity

Twitter: @youknowkempa@guillotine4you@ShanNDSTevens@Flojaune

And thank you to Be Brave Bold Robot for the tunes.


VOICES: the podcast
Independent. Weird. Audio. The VOICES: River City podcast is here to talk all things Sacramento with the region's activists, artists and aardvarks.