On Sunday, the Daily Caller reported that authorities in Portland, Oregon have decided to scrap their registry of known gang members out of concern that a majority of gang members are racial minorities. The registry was very useful in that when you ran a name through it, you could learn if the person was a gang member, what gang they belong to and what gang-related crimes they have committed.
The city is claiming that doing away with the registry will not allow gang members to hide better. Besides, they had to eliminate the registry because all of the gang members were overwhelmingly black and Hispanic, making the registry racist.
Some things are so ridiculously easy to answer that it’s a wonder why anyone asks any questions anymore. A mentally deficient reporter once asked notorious bank robber Willie Sutton why he robbed banks and Sutton answered, “Because that’s where the money is.” So, why is the registry made up of predominantly blacks and Hispanics? Because that’s who makes up the majority of the gangs. Duh. Make sense to you?
According to the Daily Caller:
Portland police will no longer maintain a database of suspected gang members, due to concerns that the vast majority of people with the gang label are racial minorities.
Starting Oct. 15, the Portland Police Bureau will end the 20-year practice of issuing gang member designations, which police say can lead to “unintended consequences” and a lifelong stigma even for those who have given up the gang lifestyle. Officials intend to notify the approximately 300 people on the gang list that the bureau will purge all records related to the designations, The Oregonian reported.
“There are still criminal gang members. That doesn’t go away because we don’t have a gang designation,” said Capt. Mike Krantz, according to The Oregonian. “We’re not pretending gang violence doesn’t exist. We’re just taking this one thing away.”
City officials and community activists had long urged the bureau to stop attaching the gang designation to criminal suspects, claiming the practice disproportionately impacted people of color. A review of police data by The Oregonian last year found that 81 percent of the “criminal gang affiliates” in Portland’s database were racial or ethnic minorities.
Portland’s mayor Ted Wheeler, said:
“This is too long coming. It was the right thing to do.”
But who do gangs primarily hurt? Minorities. So what the liberal elites in Portland are saying is that it is more important to quit naming gang members who commit vicious crimes than to protect hard working and honest minorities upon whom the gangs feed.
Under the current policy, police officers can add someone to the gang database if the person self-identifies as a gang member, participates in a gang initiation ritual, commits a gang-related crime or displays two or more “observable signs” of gang membership. Neither a criminal conviction nor an arrest is required to attach a gang designation to a suspect’s file.
Portland police label about 100 people as gang members each year, according to The Oregonian. When an officer runs the name of a person who has been flagged as a gang member, the label will show up in a special report that includes any known information about nicknames, employers, schools, vehicles and associates.
Officers will no longer keep those reports and flags, says Krantz. Instead, they will record only alleged criminal conduct such as illegal weapons possession or involvement in shootings.
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