Oakland Police Chief Kirkpatrick Seeks Desley Brooks Removal From Committee Chair, Calls Council President Reid
In a clear example of pure insubordination, Anne Kirkpatrick, the Oakland Police Chief, was said to have called Oakland City Council President Larry Reid, openly seeking the removal of District Six Oakland City Councilmember Desley Brooks as Chairperson of the Public Safety Committee.
Regardless of what you think of Councilmember Desley Brooks, the Chief of Police essentially acting as the Mayor of Oakland in calling Council President Reid sets a bad precedent and paints a picture of a city that’s completely out of control and leaderless.
If I’m not mistaken, Chief Kirkpatrick was selected and appointed by Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. Thus, if Chief Kirkpatrick wants some kind of change in the Public Safety Committee, her correct action is to call her boss, Mayor Schaaf, and not act as if Libby didn’t appoint her.
Moreover, Chief Kirkpatrick’s action calls into question the logic of Section 218 of the Oakland City Charter, which, while it prohibits the City Council from influcing city staff, it’s silent on the action of a city staffer calling an Oakland City Councilmember or the Mayor of Oakland, if that person does not answer to the Mayor directly.
Moreover, it would seem the City Charter should be brought in line with modern rules at the state level frowning on what’s called “improper political activity.” Regardless of the details, it’s clear to anyone who has reported this, or gotten wind of it, that Chief Kirkpatrick’s action in calling Reid to have Brooks removed was out of line.
Equally out of line is the City of Oakland’s incredibly immature act of working to essentially rubber stamp the action of a former community activist in reportedly bullying, or trying to bully, a sitting Oakland City Councilperson over a simple difference of opinion on policy – and I am referring to the argument the former community activist, in this case Elaine Brown, started with Councilmember Brooks. One that ended with Brooks defending herself – contrary to the report by media biased against Brooks.
Think about it: you’re a councilmember, and an Oaklander comes up at a restaurant, talks to you negatively about a point of view you have, calls you derogotory names, then physically threatens you and hits you – and the moment you defend yourself, you’re persecuted all because the Oaklander uses the legal system against you, first.
That’s what happened to Desley Brooks.
So now, and just two weeks after the City of San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors successfully under cut the power of a black female elected official, the now-Former Mayor and still Supervisor London Breed, we have the Oakland City Council essentially seeking to take similar action against another black female elected official, Desley Brooks.
Is Oakland and San Francisco the new Alabama? Starting to look like it.