CARLETON CRONIN | We need neighborhood watch … and real leadership

Gosh — leave my hometown for a few weeks and return to a strange place.  I’m referring to the City Council vote to reduce our police protection by dropping five deputy positions.  Actually, I heard about this action from a friend who read about it in the Drudge (sp?) Report, a right-wing financial journal.

Then, of course, on the front page, of the LA Times on July 19.

If I correctly understand the details of the Council’s decision, we are to lose five deputy positions but replace therm with an unspecified number of Block By Block security guards. 

Really? To replace sworn, uniformed police who have powers of arrest with “security guards” in a time of increased lawlessness seems absurd.

My own experience with the Block bike patrols was when my wife asked two of the security guards to report a man, still in their view, who was exposing himself to her, their response was that she should call the sheriff herself.  Why do we need these people?

Instead, what I’d like to see is a return to a well-organized WATCH program involving both the residential and the commercial communities and fully sponsored by the city – as once we had. We all have the initial responsibility of caring for ourselves, the city supplies the mechanisms – for which we pay.  As for the deputies – on what basis do we hire them? A l a carte or a package plan? How do we negotiate with the sheriff?  Is the commercial community involved? As you can see there’s an awful it to discuss, not just a few numbers.

Thankfully, our political system still allows us to reflect upon the people we elect to serve us and to review their service and actions on a regular basis. Elections are coming. 

But first comes the period which I have called the Silly Season, borrowing that term from a Boston newspaper columnist of long ago.  He was referring to the extent to which some political candidates would go with extravagant promises which even the dullest voter would know to be silly.  That period is just ahead of us.  We must consider candidates for our City Council who have some real world experience, who demonstrate a knowledge of the city and its seriously diverse population, of its history and have a realistic vision of its future — and not waste time in sorting out one’s pronouns. 

Age doesn’t matter: maturity is paramount.

West Hollywood, like every other municipality in the country, is facing challenges and prospects never before encountered. An unpredictable climate and an unstable national government will test the most able. Let’s not fail ourselves this time.

4.2 6 votes
Article Rating

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

11 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Eastside Straight Girl
Eastside Straight Girl
4 months ago

When Laura Manukian retired from the Neighborhood Watch program, it basically fell apart. After a revolving door of (highly paid) misfits trying to take it over, nobody had the chops to keep it going or to make it better. Tod Hallman is the N-W Captain for the Eastside & he expanded the area & I am glad he did. The rest of the streets need to step up & form their own Captain & Co-Captains, have meetings, get people more engaged & educated in the process of safety, & at the same time, the City of WeHo needs to get… Read more »

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
4 months ago

Carleton Cronin for City Council 2022

Bastian
Bastian
4 months ago

They’re not security guards.That would require training, criminal background check, and a license.

Per their job ad

OBSERVE AND REPORT– While on patrol be watchful for unwanted behaviors or criminal activity and report to local authorities via established communication methods

HOSPITALITY AND CUSTOMER SERVICE –While on patrol will go out of the way to actively acknowledge pedestrians with a friendly greeting or identify visitors in order to provide directions, information, city information or recommendations

From your experience, sounds like they can’t even do the first half of their job responsibilities.

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
4 months ago

Lindsey Horvath’s out of office email says she’s returning tomorrow, so ask her how her 2 week luxury vacation in Paris, France was, then ask her if we should just go down to zero sheriffs in the City. I mean if you’re in favor of cutting police, why not go all the way. The city is practically a free for all right now. C’est Magnifique, Lindsey!

CHLOE ROSS
CHLOE ROSS
3 months ago
Reply to  WehoQueen

I hope she brought everyone a souvenir.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
4 months ago

We have seen time and again that when neighbors are engaged and know each other, there is an increase in vigilance that helps deter crime. The one upside to the Council’s recent vote to cut deputies is that there has been a surge in interest and participation within our existing neighborhood groups, by residents who are concerned about the City Council putting public safety at risk. At the last Council meeting we heard the pious and rather condescending rationalizations from the Council members who voted to cut the deputies and frankly they came across as delusional and self righteous. In… Read more »

Last edited 4 months ago by Steve Martin
Joe Bologna
Joe Bologna
4 months ago
Reply to  Steve Martin

“Delusional and self righteous” should be embedded in the West Hollywood flag.

CHLOE ROSS
CHLOE ROSS
3 months ago
Reply to  Steve Martin

Yup

michaelz
michaelz
4 months ago

Mr. Cronin is the voice of reason…
Wonderful article…..

Personal Responsibility
Personal Responsibility
4 months ago

Carl, inherent in your article is the concept of personal responsibility imbedded in the minds of supposedly mature people. Maturity can come at any age and perhaps at times never, but the neighborhood fabric can be one of the strongest in defending and protecting ourselves. Augmenting that by trained and well organized police is the way to go. Believing we can be protected by ambassadors not as competent as Boy Scouts and likely working it as a “side gig” is not the path to security. Happy to see various parts of our community have scheduled coffees or whatever to better… Read more »

pantsuitdandelion
pantsuitdandelion
3 months ago

That should be supplemented by police who are both well-trained and well-organized. Assuming octordle our safety can be ensured by ambassadors who are no more qualified than Boy Scouts and who are most likely using their jobs as a “side gig” is not the way to go.

11
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x