“No” on Measure C

Mr. Eric Blair must be smiling somewhere. During his lifetime, he managed to turn his pen name into a standard adjective: “Orwellian.” And now, years after his death, we’re living in the dystopia he imagined/predicted.

Orwellian: a perfect one-word distillation of a complicated process whereby something that means one thing eventually comes to mean the exact opposite. Orwellian: the constant stream of misinformation masquerading as facts emanating from Washington, DC.

On May 16, Los Angelenos will go to the ballot box to vote on, among other things, an Orwellian bit of chicanery known as Charter Amendment Measure C.

Whether or not you’re a big fan of police officers and their daily shootings of unarmed black people, we can all agree that an officer found guilty of serious misconduct — like shooting an unarmed black person for no good reason — should not avoid punishment. That officer should be held accountable.

Charter Amendment C makes accountability less likely, not more. Couched in reassuring but misleading language  )”civilian oversight”) that would make the author of 1984 and Animal Farm chuckle, Measure C seeks to gerrymander the makeup of the “Board of Rights” – the disciplinary review board for LAPD officer. If passed, the Board would include only those known to be most lenient towards the police, shielding guilty officers from suspension, demotion or firing.

The organization that crafted Measure C? The Los Angeles Police Department’s officers’ union.

Charter Amendment C would allow the very few bad apples in the LAPD to remain on the force, continuing to interact with the public while carrying lethal weapons. Measure C would embolden officers to abuse their power, knowing their job is not at risk. It would encourage less discipline of naughty police officers, not more.

To protect and to serve — and to be held accountable for misconduct. We’re voting “No” on Measure C.

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