In this episode of The No-Longer-Golden State…
Show of hands: How many of us have been inconvenienced by jaywalkers darting across busy streets — usually not in crosswalks — or have almost hit one or more? Second, how many believe that when a law is decriminalized, the decriminalized action or activity increases in frequency?
Finally, who thinks ticketing jaywalkers is racist? Hang on — California Gov. Gavin Newsom (Leftist) just raised his hand. Moreover, Newsom, on Friday, signed a law decriminalizing jaywalking across the state.
In Newsom’s pandering mind, the familiar practice of police handing out tickets to pedestrians is enforced more often against minorities than other people. Hence, ticketing jaywalking is “racist.”
As reported by Breitbart, California’s new, AB 2147, known as the “Freedom to Walk Act” — you can’t make this stuff up — takes into consideration the “cultural differences” between Californians who are deferential to laws governing pedestrian traffic and tend to obey “don’t walk” signals, and urban dwellers who are notoriously defiant when it comes to crossing against traffic signals.
The bill’s sponsor, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), celebrated the governor’s action in a statement on Friday:
It should not be a criminal offense to safely cross the street. When expensive tickets and unnecessary confrontations with police impact only certain communities, it’s time to reconsider how we use our law enforcement resources and whether our jaywalking laws really do protect pedestrians. Plus, we should be encouraging people to get out of their cars and walk for health and environmental reasons.
Not to nitpick, Mr. Ting, but darting across busy streets, often causing drivers to slam on their breaks, is hardly “walking for health.” And “no comment” on your “environmental reasons” nonsense.
AB 2147 was Ting’s second attempt to decriminalize jaywalking in California.
The statement continued about the “fairness” of the way fines were assessed, and the prevention of potentially escalating police stops:
Jaywalking is arbitrarily enforced throughout California, with tickets disproportionately given to people of color and lower-income individuals who cannot afford tickets that can often total hundreds of dollars. When the law goes into effect on January 1, 2023, fewer working families will struggle to pay the costly citation, and police would not be able to use jaywalking as a pretext to detain someone.
As Breitbart noted, the new law prevents law enforcement officers from stopping pedestrians for jaywalking, except when it’s obvious the person crossing the street is in “immediate danger of collision with a moving vehicle or other device moving exclusively by human power.”
Final show of hands: Who among us thinks the new law will be exploited, including to the extent of crying “Racism!” — even when the described “immediate danger of a collision” is clear to multiple witnesses?
The question was rhetorical.
In other recent Gavin Newsom news, the controversial governor on Thursday signed a law designating California as the first “sanctuary state” in the nation for “gender-dysphoric” children and teens seeking so-called “gender-affirming care.” Newsom declared:
In California, we believe in equality and acceptance. We believe that no one should be prosecuted or persecuted for getting the care they need — including gender-affirming care. Parents know what’s best for their kids, and they should be able to make decisions around the health of their children without fear. We must take a stand for parental choice.
Yet, Governor Hair Gel remains clueless about why he was nearly recalled.