Eric Arnold 
Member since Nov 15, 2011


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Re: “Oakland City Council Fights Over How to Reduce Homicides, Violence

Hmm. if we take the argument for the creation of a DVP at face value, does that mean that OPD are ineffective at violence prevention? If so, why would spending more $$ on police be an effective solution? Consider that Oakland just paid out almost $1m to settle the Celeste Guap case. That's money which could have been spent on things which could have reduced violence.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 06/10/2017 at 7:13 PM

Re: “My Afternoon With E-40: A Day in the Life of the Bay Area's Most Prolific and Respected Rapper

@Charlie Pine. maaan, i can't believe you are still at it. This is literally the same argument you were making in 2005. Ok, so let's say a video shot on a closed lot features Youth Uprising turf dancers glorifying Oakland's youth-created cultural expression, and that video was also promoted by a major corporation, who got it aired on MTV, which led to entertainment careers and continued job opportunities for those dancers, and brought the local rap scene out of a sales and name recognition slump it had been in for 8 years. If an elected official came up with such a scheme, it would be called a landmark economic development initiative.
Should we forget that the military sponsors professional sports, or that big banks invest in private prisons? How are we holding Youth UpRising--whose mission is to create economic opportunity for underserved populations--accountable, but not Warner Brothers or Viacom? you should know as well as anyone there was a proposal to legalize what you call "reckless driving" put forth by the D6 Councilmember which was quickly rejected by the rest of the Council.
So, E-40 could have just as easily been promoting legal driving had a Council vote gone the other way. In other words, the criminalization of youth is not a justification for the criminalization of youth, it's a justification for bloated law enforcement spending instead of social services, and so-called public safety policies which take hundreds of millions of dollars out of the general fund, where they are spent disproportionately, i.e., not spread evenly throughout the city.
So, what happens if we take performance money out of these artists' and dancers' pockets? Do we make any dent whatsoever in curbing illegal activity? if anything, we create more illicit crime, because we've now eliminated a pathway to a career, or at least steady and gainful employment, for kids who are already at a disadvantage.
After all this time, Charlie, it's difficult to believe that you don't see the larger picture of how culture--yes, even youth culture--is an economic driver. The city's own website says so.
If you're suggesting that youth should work minimum wage jobs and turn down the chance to be in a major rap video because you disagree with its subject matter, well that just sounds mean and short-sighted.
I dont think anyone has ever proven a direct correlation between suggestive lyrics and actual actions--shout out to the First Amendment, homie--and besides, what we actually saw following the release of this video was a bunch of YouTube tributes showing suburban youth hilariously attempting to "ghost-ride" their parent's Volvos on near-empty suburban streets.
If that's a cause for alarm, then maybe its time to admit you have an adverse reaction to anything cultural which is black-created and youth-oriented. Which makes you a bigger part of the problem than one now-legendary rap video.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 01/17/2017 at 8:43 PM

Re: “Community Coalition and Wood Partners Strike Deal on Massive 13th Street  Housing and Retail Project

@Matt, thanks for your opinion, but your take on this seems bereft of both facts and context. if the Lake Merritt Area Specific Plan had any teeth, the community wouldn't have to fight for affordable housing. This deal is also significant because it adds something tangible to the city's proclamation of BAMBD as an arts district, establishing a model for cultural retail. The developer is also willing to direct the Public Art Fee towards projects which benefit the community. And D2's low-icome residents will benefit from project contributions aimed at anti-displacement and stabilization efforts. I dont know how one can spin this as a dirty deal, given that the Planning Commission didnt even consider community benefits, and approved the project initially with market-rate housing and no contribution to affordable units. So why is it "dirty" to get wins for the community which benefit its most vulnerable residents? You may want to rethink that perspective.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 11/22/2016 at 11:36 AM

Re: “Sex Worker Advocates Say Oakland's ReportJohn.org Prostitution Snitch Web Site Does More Harm Than Good

Is this even legal? Don't you need proof of solicitation? The potential for abuse and false claims seems high, and there doesn't appear to be any way to determine that solicitation has in fact happened. John stings usually involve decoys who can arrest once money is offered for sex. But this program has civil rights red flags all over it, since observers will probably not be in a position to hear verbal exchanges, and even then it would be hearsay. i get that Oakland is the #2 place for sex trafficking in the country, and OPD is understaffed, but did Schaaf and O'Malley just come up with this on their own, without CSEC orgs co-signing? And the timing seems a little convenient, considering that just last week, O'Malley held a press conference to announce she was filing charges in the police sex scandal which actually couldnt be filed because of witness tampering by the police. This article does a decent job of pointing out that the program could endanger women, and it's clear we need better solutions, such as a way to target more pimps, not to mention a top to bottom, thorough scouring of police predators who exploit sex workers. Guap surely cant be the only minor who has had intimate encounters with OPD and other departments. If we cant rely on the police to uphold the law and public safety, now we are supposed to put our trust in anonymous snitches? I can smell the lawsuits already...

Posted by Eric Arnold on 09/20/2016 at 9:24 PM

Re: “East Bay Environmentalists at Odds Over Future of Eucalyptus Trees

It doesnt seem like this story has changed much since the last time it was reported on. Eucalyptus may not be native, but there's very little hard evidence to suggest they should shoulder the blame for the firestorm's devastation. The biggest factor was almost certainly the failure to clear rooftops of accumulated dry brush and the build up of shrubbery next to houses, which caused the fire to spread extremely rapidly, torching houses in its path. It takes a lot of heat for eucalyptus crowns to burn, and had the houses been adequately maintained, the fire could have been managed with far less damage. There's also evidence which suggests that Eucalyptus are naturally fire-resistant below a temperature threshold. On top of that, had Berkeley and Oakland firefighters used the same size plugs for their water hoses, they would have been far more effective at stopping the fire. In any event, clear-cutting 100,000's of trees without a reforestation plan and widely using pesticides doesnt sound like environmental conservation to me.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 07/06/2016 at 1:22 PM

Re: “Badge of Dishonor: Top Oakland Police Department Officials Looked Away as East Bay Cops Sexually Exploited and Trafficked a Teenager

geykerry wrote: "On virtually every part of the planet this young lady was above the age of consent. She seems intelligent and at peace with her chosen field of employment. It is very insulting and condescending for you all to force the 'victim' label on her. Yes this was icky that they happened to be cops, and certain police conduct codes were apparently violated, but as a general rule, consensual sex acts between consenting all adults should not be a crime." ... Uh, no. 1) The age of consent exists for a reason. To simply pretend it doesn't exist is irresponsible. 2) Guap allegedly has been a sex worker since the age of 12, meaning that she was not legally able to consent to any sex acts prior to the age of 18. 3) What allegedly occurred was criminal misconduct. it's not simply consensual sex acts since police exploited the power dynamic and were, in effect, acting as pimps. 4) Guap herself has referred to herself as a victim, and police having sex with underage girls is certainly a crime. 5) to downplay these incidents as merely "icky" appears to reflect a lack of comprehension of the failure in accountability on behalf of the police. 6) legalizing prostitution wouldnt address the trafficking epidemic in a real way, since the average age of a trafficked girl is 13.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 06/20/2016 at 11:32 AM

Re: “New: Oakland Fires Yet Another Police Chief (Third in a Week!)

now might be a good time to dig up Schaaf's record on police reform over the years. IJS.

Posted by Eric Arnold on 06/17/2016 at 8:51 PM

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