Barbara Boxer robbed, assaulted in Oakland shortly after they defund police

(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

It’s never funny when someone falls victim to assault and other violent crimes, including in the case of former California Senator Barbara Boxer. We will note the irony, however, in the fact that she was assaulted and robbed in Oakland, only a couple of days after the City Council voted to defund the Oakland Police Department to the tune of nearly 18 million dollars. Boxer isn’t the only victim of rising crime in the greater Oakland area, but she’s certainly one of the more high-profile ones. The city has experienced a significant surge in gang violence, shootings and property crimes across the board. And through it all, the elected leadership in Oakland has remained on course, insisting that “police interactions” are the bigger problem, and “community intervention” in the form of social workers is better suited to handling at least some types of crime. Perhaps Boxer’s experience will prod them in a different direction? (Thin Blue Line)

Former Senator Barbara Boxer from Oakland, California was just robbed and assaulted, which is coming shortly after the city council there voted to defund the police force of nearly $17 million, sending that money to other so-called “crime-fighting” programs, like social workers and such.

CBS Local reported that the Oakland City Council approved a budget early Thursday evening that will strip $17.4 million in funding from the Oakland Police Department and direct the money toward other programs.

The $18 million is over the course of the next two years.

How big of a hammer do the members of the Oakland City Council need to be hit over the head with before the message starts sinking in? Back when these significant cuts to the police budget were first debated, even the ultraliberal Mayor Libby Schaaf said that she couldn’t support those kinds of cuts amid the surging crime rates. The Chief of Police warned that if he lost that many officers all at once, he couldn’t assure the safety of the community.

The warning signs have not been subtle. The city is still reeling from a mass shooting at Lake Merritt on Juneteenth that turned out to be a running war between two or more rival gangs. Within a week of the first round of cuts, John covered what the Oakland Chief of Police could only describe as 12 hours of non-stop chaos.

Shootings, stabbings and robberies are not going to be stopped by somebody with a clipboard. Gang warfare isn’t going to come to an end by having a therapist try to understand the needs and motivations of the combatants. And above all else, criminals who have no fear of the police or of significant consequences for their crimes are going to take advantage of what they see as a golden opportunity to ply their trade.

Not that there’s ever any “good news” coming out of a story like this, but at least it sounds as if Boxer wasn’t seriously injured.

Being knocked down and having your phone stolen is no fun, but it obviously could have been much, much worse. I wouldn’t mind the chance to ask the former Senator who she voted for in the last election for the City Council and if perhaps this experience might change her inclinations a bit. There’s an old saying out there about how a liberal is just a conservative who hasn’t been mugged yet. Perhaps we’ll have to wait until a few members of the Council have been carjacked before they rethink these policies.