Published September 2, 2020
This Letter to the Editor is in response to another published earlier.
A letter to the editor that you published makes misleading assertions about the stance of Whatcom Democrats on policing.
The draft resolution was for discussion purposes only, and DID NOT get adopted by Whatcom Democrats. It therefore does not represent the position of Whatcom Democrats. Adopted documents are in our 2020 Platform and Resolutions section [link added by editor].
Good policy requires listening to everyone. As Whatcom Democrats we believe in listening, in revising, and working together. That will include consulting with law enforcement as well as communities that have been treated unevenly (in Whatcom County, Black, American Indian and Alaska Native, and Hispanic people are each arrested and jailed at over three times the rate of white people after eliminating the effect of multiple bookings per individual). Only once that process concludes will we be in a position to make recommendations.
Our criminal justice system needs reform. We strongly believe in public safety, in accountability, and in equal treatment under the law. We oppose all violence. That means we do see a vital role for police. Everyone’s right to life and liberty requires personal safety: protection against intimidation, assault, murder, rape, etc. Securing that safety is a noble calling. On the other hand, officer misconduct violates their essential purpose, breaks the public trust, and jeopardizes the lives of those they are sworn to protect.
Whatcom Democrats Chair
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