Seattle police union chief: ‘CHOP’ zone shows ‘socialist political pandering’ is becoming mainstreamjuin 30, 2020
What was once a “fringe element of socialist political pandering” is now becoming mainstream in Seattle at the risk of its residents, Seattle Police Officers Guild President Michael Solan warned Tuesday.
In an interview on “Fox & Friends” with host Ainsley Earhardt, Solan said violent crime in the city’s “Capitol Hill Organized Protest” – or the autonomous zone known as “CHOP” – is an example of what happens when elected leadership allows an area of their community to be “police-free.”
“And, it’s another example surrounding the conversations which elected officials and politicians across this nation are supporting when we talk about defunding the police,” he remarked.
Several prominent Democratic leaders like Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti have already taken strides to defund their departments amid nationwide protests against police brutality following the death of George Floyd.
On Friday, the Minneapolis City Council unanimously approved a proposal to eliminate the city’s police department in the hopes of establishing a new “holistic” approach to public safety.
Solan recognized that Floyd’s death was shocking and that reform is necessary but disagreed that defunding would solve problems.
“And … the first thing to go when we talk about defunding the police is the training budget,” he remarked. “And, what separates good cops from bad is training … And, what we need right now is more funding and more training and more police officers and we need to reengage, reimagine policing when it comes to reconnecting with our communities across – not only just Seattle, but across the nation.”
“Not only is our country divided, but police – we’re still in shock [about] what occurred in Minneapolis. And, that type of action shouldn’t be allowed in any form of any human interaction regardless if it’s just police or just other citizens,” Solan asserted.
He told Earhardt that while his union demands justice for what occurred, the next steps for America’s police forces are to “reconnect back with [their] community policing engagement.”
“I think the Emerald Protection Plan, which we came up with – we’re looking to reengage as far as what we came up with a concept within the EPP is a la carte policing. Connecting with each individual neighborhood in the city of Seattle with community liaisons to listen to them and then dictate how we conduct our policing within that community,” Solan pointed out.
“That is the heart of what we should reengage with. Reimagining police,” he concluded.