THC received a highly surprising amount of response following Monday’s article regarding the EPD’s purchase of new tasers – and apparent preparations for some serious shit going down in the Palco Marsh. THC had naturally expected some action to arise following the EPD’s mandate to remove folks from the Marsh come May 2nd.
THC has been clear on our opinions regarding the City’s bone-headed decision to vacate the Palco Marsh for their precious little trail. We’ve since been told that the over-riding reason trial construction has to start is to remove the old concrete structures that led to a “self-styled homeless advocate”‘s injury and a subsequent $400,000 settlement paid out by the City. If the structures are not removed, the City will either lose or be unable to afford their insurance policy. (Thanks a lot, lady.)
Hell, we even heard from someone that (doubtfully!) claimed to be an EPD officer that riot gear is going to be standard equipment for all officers following the Marsh evacuation. (THC thinks this person was bullshitting us, but who knows.)
But what we didn’t realize is that the EPD may have very good reason to believe they’ll be met with entrenched and armed resistance when they begin their sweeps.
According to a number of readers, the EPD aren’t just concerned because of the potentially violent background of the homeless in the Marsh. They’re concerned because a number of groups, namely the ACLU and potentially other, unspecified homeless advocate groups, are actively encouraging the homeless to stand their ground and resist EPD’s efforts to clear the Marsh.
Which is just about the stupidest f***ing thing THC has heard. Not even the Supes do shit that stupid. Rather than trying to resolve the issue of homelessness, or at least find some more peaceable solution, the ACLU and others are out actively encouraging people to violently resist the police. Which is truly despicable on many levels. That puts both the police and the folks in the Marsh at severe risk. Remember how many guns get pulled out of the Marsh? Clearly, the people down there are no strangers to arming themselves.
So in the interest of pushing their own social engineering agenda, ACLU is agitating in the Marsh – for what? To set their group up for a lawsuit? Oh yeah, and to get somebody killed. Good job everyone – way to make this already terrible situation worse.
At the end of the day, the City of Eureka is ultimately responsible for creating this debacle. But the groups actively encouraging resistance aren’t making anything better for the homeless or the community. They’re doing it for a set of misguided ideals about the way they think things should be done.
While everyone else was all worked up listening to HumCPR and Betty Chinn talk about their container village proposal at the Eureka City Council’s meeting last week, THC had a chance to peruse other items on the meeting’s agenda.
Sure, lot’s of boring stuff. But wait, what’s that? EPD appropriating funds to update it’s taser arsenal?
Normally we’d say something about how much money is being spent, etc. But THC thinks $28k for police-grade tasers ain’t too bad. What actually piqued our interest is the EPD’s percieved need to upgrade their arsenal – and to upgrade it pronto.
Why would they need to do that? Obviously, for some expected increase in situations in which tasing the living shit out of people is needed. What could possibly lead to such a situation?
Oh, of course – kicking people out of the Palco Marsh. Here’s a piece from a Times-Standard article by Hunter Cresswell:
“There are still about 130 people living out there based on a count done this week. It’s not clear how these people will be made to move off the property.
“I’m not going into the actual operations plan right now due to officer safety concerns,” Eureka Police Department Capt. Brian Stephens said.”
Anyone else willing to bet that the “operations plan” involves EPD officers in full riot gear? THC wouldn’t blame the police for such a policy – it’s going to be increasingly scary trying to evict people from the Marsh who may be violent criminals. (As an added bonus, thanks to Eureka’s hard-on for a waterfront jogging trail, those same potentially violent individuals will be pushed out into the greater community. And housed in Old Town!)
The bottom line is this – it looks like there’s gonna be a serious escalation in police activity in the next week. THC sincerely hopes it doesn’t happen the way we’re afraid it might. But it sure looks like the EPD is gearing up for battle.
Thanks again, City Council. P.S. it’s a great idea to to saddle the entire community with the consequences of pushing desperate people out of the Marsh so you can have a trail.