Open letter to police chief Sean Whent

Categories: Local Business Liaison Committee, Open Mic

sean toon

Dear Sean Whent,

I realize you’re a busy man, so I’ve hidden truffles all through this communiqué, to help you keep up your stamina. I realize it probably takes a lot to get a rise out of a “Top Cop” like yourself, but I assure you, you’ll be doing barrel rolls all the way back to Walnut Creek. As well, given the high rates of cuckoldry in your profession, and the prettiness of your wife, let’s keep this short.

Top Cop, you have upset the most transformative and influential economic force in Oakland, since the CIA first dropped off cocaine on our shores. You have meddled with the almighty Hipster Dollar. The Tumblrsphere is ablaze with accounts of paramilitary forces impeding their rightful access to Uptown savories and cocktails (apparently PBR is passé, didn’t you know?). NOW you have gone too far, and you WILL atone!

Because a prosperous Oakland has less need of police, for every dollar you cost us, a few more magically appear in your coffers. However, your difficulties upping your staff are due to the horrendous stigma of your department. OPD is rapidly becoming resume poison for those in law-enforcement. As well, your toxic union and history of punishing whistle-blowers scares away good recruits. With such inadequacies, I’m amazed you can fluff your presence as you do. Currently, much of your role has been outsourced to various costly agencies. The presence of other actors will increase, and ultimately the private-sector will finish you off. Your ambition has shown you lacking, and unable to fulfill Oakland’s needs (to say nothing of her desires). Greed is good, but your excesses are giving greed a bad name, and it is not the only reputation you have besmirched.

Your policy to close the balconies hurts business, because what the private-sector needs is transparency and accessibility. I’m sure you’re familiar with the Doi Moi reforms and the Rambouillet agreement. Business must feel comfortable in the civic environment, able to access and manipulate the mechanisms of society, and heavy-handed police sully such sense of ease. We also can not standout by having the rabble excluded. That’s how it works. We need packed galleries, vibrant civics for vibrant commerce. After all, corporations are people, and the people have rights.

In short, government is the shadow cast by business, and you are blocking our sun.

Here are our requests:
1) OPD vehicles sit idly downtown, flashing their lights in front of clubs. You’re going to cause a seizure. You’ve chased away immeasurable business with this ridiculous peacocking. The people don’t like your flashing lights. You’re not a rave. It’s bad for business, and exudes an atmosphere of danger. It is signal crime. Stop it.

2) Stay in your lane. Wait for orders like a good cop. Do not dictate policy. If Lizzy Schaaf doesn’t know what to do, that doesn’t make you a boss. A Top Cop, is still just a cop. Formally rescind your curfew, and your restrictions on public access to City Hall.

3) Consult with the business community on how to address the protest issues. There is no support for your destructive measures. If you need a liaison with the business community, (in the parlance of the block) holla atcha boy.

We do have one demand: Keep your filthy hooves off of Oakland’s women. The strip searching of women to satisfy your experiments, your neurotic fetish with orderliness and control, is a foul and disgusting outrage.

One recommendation: Apologize for the multitude of injuries (psychic and physical) inflicted on Oakland’s women during the Say Her Name protests. It would be, after all, only gentlemanly.

Dictated but not read,
JD Atwater


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