Star of ‘The Last Black Man in San Francisco’ gets loud for Chesa
San Franciscans are at a crossroads, where we must decide whether criminal justice and police reform moves forward or rolls back. In November of 2019, voters in this city demanded massive change to our legal system and elected Chesa Boudin to run the District Attorney’s Office. San Franciscans believed in his goals to end the criminalization of poverty, hold police accountable and focus on solutions that actually help victims and address the root causes of crime, like investing in trauma support and treatment.
He vowed to not only make changes going forward, but also to readdress mistakes of the past. He promised to devote office resources to reviewing cases with credible claims of innocence.
As someone who was framed by the police for murder and wrongfully convicted, losing years of my life, I knew firsthand how badly we needed change in this city.
I am proud to say that in just a short time, Chesa has kept his promises. We are a better city for it. Unfortunately, people who want a return to the status quo – especially Republicans, the police union and the uber-elite – are trying to turn back the clock. They are launching petitions to recall Chesa, resorting to lies about his record on crime and safety.
We must not be fooled – the stakes are too high. We must reject this recall and keep striving for a criminal justice system that everyone can be proud of, not one that benefits solely those with wealth and power.
What Chesa has accomplished in just 18 months – during an unprecedented pandemic and through a year-long court closure – is astounding.
Chesa is the first San Francisco DA to charge a police officer with homicide. He has increased support for victims, especially victims of domestic violence, helping people who are trapped in dangerous domestic situations to obtain transportation and housing. He has fought for wage workers and helped raise restitution funds for small businesses.
He formed an Innocence Commission to review cases with claims of wrongful conviction. He has ended wealth-based detention and stopped requesting cash bail. He substantially limited the number of children prosecuted in the adult court system.
The recall effort is led by those who only care about returning to a system where they call the shots and the only voices that matter are those of the wealthy and powerful.
All the while, he has used his platform to advocate for the resources that will create a safer San Francisco, such as violence interruption programs, trauma supports and meaningful access to substance use treatment.
Unfortunately, Chesa’s unwavering commitment to progress has angered those who preferred the status quo. They know they cannot win in an actual election, and so have tried to regain power by pouring money into a recall fueled by lies.
They are saying crime is up throughout the city – it is not. They blame every single tragedy in the city on Chesa, offering neither evidence to support their claims nor a vision to improve safety in the city. They are blaming Chesa for poverty, substance use disorders and homelessness, claims that are patently absurd.
The truth is, they only care about returning to a system where they call the shots and the only voices that matter are those of the wealthy and powerful.
We must not be fooled. The stakes are too high. Chesa has put us on course to create a San Francisco where everyone is treated with dignity in our legal system, a San Francisco who strives to make the city better for all of us.
Do not sign the recall petition. Let’s keep moving forward.
Learn more and get involved at https://standwithchesa.com/.