After defunding the police out of existence, San Francisco is turning to cameras to watch crime occur in real time. They don’t plan on doing anything about the criminals, it’s the latest California reality TV craze. The few police the city has left are about to do a trial run after the pilot project was announced. The smell of microwave popcorn soon filled the Tenderloin precinct.
Network of private cameras
San Francisco’s board of supervisors approved a “trial run” of police monitoring private surveillance cameras in real time. The liberals shocked the civil liberties groups by daring to potentially impact privacy in Nancy Pelosi’s home city.
As Fox News writes, like many Democrat run places across the country, San Francisco “is struggling to balance public safety with constitutional protections.” Guess which side won.
Mayor London Breed practically begged for the ability to monitor citywide cameras in real time. The merchants were more than happy to patch the police into their security feeds. Both shopkeepers and residents are screaming for “more tools to combat drug dealing and retail theft.”
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The board gave a 15 month approval to try it out. The Tenderloin, “one of the poorest and most drug-infested neighborhoods in the city,” has been in the news lately. All the way back in December, Mayor Breed used that as her incentive to “seek legislation allowing law enforcement real-time access to surveillance video.” She got it.
The vote was a surprising 7-4 in favor of allowing police to monitor private cameras, “with some supervisors astonished that the governing board of politically liberal San Francisco would consider granting more powers to law enforcement in a city that celebrates its activism.”
Level headed voices prevailed. Locals are “tired of sophisticated criminal networks taking advantage of San Francisco’s lax attitude toward retail theft and other property crimes.” Not to mention, crapping all over the sidewalk.
Safeguards are included
The same supervisor who fought tooth and nail to ban the use of facial recognition software in 2019, Aaron Peskin, is solidly behind making the cameras accessible. He points out to fellow progressives that “they worked hard to negotiate safeguards, including strict reporting requirements when live monitoring was used and if it improved safety.”
After the test run they can re-evaluate. “I realized that is anathema to some,” admits Peskin. “I am willing to give it a try.”
Similar projects are already in use in more conservative areas. In San Francisco and just about everywhere else that the cameras are being networked to the police, usage is voluntary.
The sole exception is Houston. There, bars, nightclubs and convenience stores MUST “record outside their premises at all times and share footage with police when requested.” In Frisco, rampant shoplifting and brutal attacks on Asian American seniors is out of control.
Mayor Breed gave a huge thank you to the board, declaring that live surveillance would let the police “respond to the challenges presented by organized criminal activity, homicides, gun violence,” and even “officer misconduct.” She had to throw that in to appease her liberal colleagues.
Board President Shamann Walton threw a fit after the tapping of cameras was allowed. “I know the thought process is, ‘just trust us, just trust the police department.‘ But the reality is people have been violating civil liberties since my ancestors were brought here from an entirely, completely different continent.“