In a column in the Wall Street Journal last month, Heather MacDonald noted that San Francisco “has been conducting a three-decade experiment in what happens when society stops enforcing bourgeois norms of behavior.”
The results, as anyone who has visited that once magnificent city in recent years, are plainly obvious, as another editorial in the Journal observed: “Open use of narcotics is commonplace, homeless encampments dominate public spaces, and human feces dot the sidewalks. The middle class has fled punishing housing costs, and neighborhoods are increasingly plagued with burglaries and property crimes.” However, the leading edge of San Francisco’s assault on societal norms and the rule of law has been its all-out war on immigration enforcement.
Last week, San Franciscans doubled down on their nihilistic experiment. Voters in that city elected Chesa Boudin to be their district attorney. Boudin, who will soon become the county’s chief law enforcement official, ran on a platform of abolishing quality of life offenses in a city where quality of life is already on the ropes. “Crimes such as public camping, offering or soliciting sex, public urination, blocking a sidewalk, etc. should not and will not be prosecuted,” Boudin wrote on a candidate questionnaire from the ACLU, an organization that has long waged a legal assault on societal norms.
But there is a special place in Boudin’s hell for those who attempt to trespass the radical left’s holy of holies: unconditional protection for people who show contempt for U.S. immigration laws. In a campaign video, Boudin proclaimed, “If ICE agents come to kidnap members of our community, if they endanger our children, they will be prosecuted.”
Boudin’s rhetoric, is absurd. A local district attorney has absolutely no authority to prosecute federal law enforcement officials for enforcing federal laws. But equating the people who enforce duly enacted federal immigration laws with kidnappers, is not merely the next step in San Francisco’s self-inflicted descent into dystopia; it is thinly-veiled incitement that could easily be taken as justification for violence directed toward law enforcement officers. A “dog-whistle,” in the parlance of the radical left.
Heck, you don’t even need to be a dog to hear the whistle. At a Boudin rally in the closing days of the campaign, there was open contempt for all law enforcement. As a surrogate for Boudin took the mic, she began rallying the faithful in a venomous attack against the San Francisco Police Officers Association (POA). “Hey, so I just got one thing to say. Which is f*%k the POA! San Francisco, this is what we get when we throw the f*%k down. This is the city where we elect a public defender to be our district attorney. What we start here, the nation follows. So, look out.”
Yes, look out. What starts out as contempt for our immigration laws, masquerading as compassion, can, over time, metastasize into an outright assault on the rule of law. San Francisco was the test case but New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Boston seem to be following suit.
N.B., Boudin isn’t just any old radical. He’s got pedigree. His parents, Kathy Boudin and David Gilbert were leaders of the domestic terrorist group, known as the Weather Underground. Mom and Dad were sentenced to 20 years, and 75 years to life, for their role in an armed robbery (intended to finance their war against the American government) that left a security guard dead. Young Chesa’s guardians, while his parents were in prison, were none other than Bill Ayres and Bernardine Dohrn.