Blogs Najee's Notes Opinion

NAJEE’S NOTES: Backtracking on needed legislation

The Rev. K.W. Tulloss, western regional director of the National Action Network (NAN), and Rev. Shane Harris, the San Diego chapter president, continue to be at the forefront in demanding statewide public policy legislation.

As the National Action Network continues the Ida B. Wells campaign an initiative of in-state direct action around police-involved shootings, elected officials in California shockingly backtracked on Assembly Bill 284. This bill was written by Assemblyman Kevin McCarty and sought to establish an investigative unit for police-involved shootings.

In an act of cowardice and disregard for lives lost, a back-room deal between state Sen. Nancy Skinner, McCarty and Attorney General Xavier Becerra compromised the progressive legislation.

On July 3, the entirety of that unit and all funding for the unit was struck out of the law. The new text reads “the Department of Justice shall conduct a study of all or a sample of peace officer-involved shootings resulting in death or serious injury that occurred in California between Jan. 1, 2015, and Dec. 31, 2016.”

We do not need a study to know that every day black lives are being threatened by unjust killing. We need justice to be served by investigating and prosecuting actual cases. This “study” would not come out until 2019. In that time, 2,000 more people will be killed by police across the country.

The sad thing is I was part of a meeting with NAN and L.A. civil rights groups recently with Becerra on police reform. Becerra said all the right things to us in person, but his actions in supporting this toothless compromise bill betrayed the trust we had in him. More importantly, he betrayed the trust of our community, which is desperately trying to find solutions to help end police abuse.

The one thing about me is that I have always been fair and respectful to public officials. But when they don’t stand up for the people who need it most, I will speak about it publicly and expose them.

I’m not on the buddy system with any politician. We must know who is with us and who is against us. Shame on you, Becerra, for your act of cowardice and we the community will see you next year during election time.

Compton City Councilman Isaac Galvan, who some residents call the clown of Compton, is at it again.

Last year, several media outlets reported that he allegedly called Compton Mayor Aja Brown the N-word and directed a gay slur at former State Sen Isadore Hall.

Now he attempts to disgrace a council peer, Councilwoman Emma Sharif, who says she found herself on the receiving end of a Galvan tirade.

Galvan is now being accused of hurling an expletive at Sharif during a conference in Carlsbad. In a letter to Compton residents, Sharif stated that Galvan used the F-word while addressing her in front of a group of colleagues at the conference.

Sharif, to her credit, ignored Galvan and took the high road. What bothers me is not what happens to black people, it’s our collective lack of response.

Where are the black men in Compton? How is our sister disrespected and no one from the church or mosque is saying anything?

Real men defend the women when they are disrespected and attacked. Over the years, Sharif has been a warrior for the residents of Compton, always on the front lines trying to help her city. Neither she nor anyone else deserves to be disrespected by Galvan.

As busy as I am in L.A., it’s obvious I have to return to Compton and help show men how to be men. And when our women are attacked by clowns like Galvan, we must defend them. Hope to see the real men of Compton at the next Compton City Council meeting.

And finally, this past weekend, after undergoing almost three years of chemotherarpy and my final cancer surgery, my wife and I attended the San Diego Smooth Jazz Festival. More than two dozen of us caravanned from Los Angeles to enjoy one of the best concerts of the year.

Boney James, Brian Culbertson, Gerald Albright, and Michael Franks were just a few of the artists who performed amazing music that kept thousands of us on our feet. A sincere congratulations to Kimberly and Oz Benoit, owner of Rainbow Productions, an African-American-owned business of over 30 years, for putting on a first-rate festival.

And thank you Kimi Rochelle Porter, the queen of public relations, for taking great care of us. And yes, I’m buying my tickets to next month’s today.

For news tips, email or follow me on Twitter@Najeeali.