"I wish they would only take me as I am" - Vincent Van Gogh               "How Can I believe in God when just last week I got my tounge caught in the roller of an electric typewriter?" - Woody Allen              "Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake" - Henry David Thoreau              "I took a speed reading course and read 'War and Peace' in twenty minutes. It involves Russia" - Woody Allen            "When promulgating esoteric cogitations, eschew platitudinous ponderosities" - Mark Rowan, my father            "Up, sluggard, and waste not life, for in the grave there will be sleep enough" - Benjamin Franklin             "What really interests me is whether God had any choice in the creation of the world." - Albert Einstein            "Welfare's purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence" - Ronald Reagan            "It's odd that you can get so anesthetized by your own pain or your own problem that you don't quite fully share the hell of someone close to you." - Lady Bird Johnson              "I still want to be the candidate for guys with confederate flags in their pickup truck" - Howard Dean

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Graduate of the University of Oregon, Married for 4-1/2 years to my High School sweetheart. I am currently residing in Cleveland while I attend med school.

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    Sunday, April 29, 2007

    "Quality of Life Court" coming to SF?

    It's fairly well known that as mayor of New York, one means by which Rudy Giuliani fought crime was by addressing the small issues...squeegee men, public urination, etc... The theory was that by knocking out the small issues, it sent a message that crime would not be tolerated, no matter how big or small. In 1993 a special court was set-up in Manhattan that addressed such "quality of life" crimes as urinating in public, aggressive panhandling, and prostitution. The Midtown Community Court hears cases and typically issues some sort of community service in lieu of a fine.

    Gavin Newsom has stated his plans to develop a similar court here in San Francisco, and I am all for it. Though San Francisco certainly has major problems with felony crimes--such as a rising homicide rate--the prevalence of petty crimes is quite high, too. Throughout the city you will see aggressive panhandlers, people drunk in public, urinating or defecating on the street, and performing other acts that make San Francisco a fairly disgusting place to live.
    To continue, the defendants must plead guilty. If they decline, their case moves to the traditional downtown court. If they do plead guilty, they're most often assigned community service to repay the neighborhood for their offenses -- and social services to address underlying problems. Fines are never part of the sentence, but jail time can be.
    By enrolling them in community service punishments in lieu of a fine, violators will be making the city a cleaner place. Furthermore, "taking ownership" in this way may make them less prone to committing such acts in the future.

    I think Newsom is making a great decision by doing so, despite the criticism that he is getting. Now, if only he would start respecting immigration laws.


    Blogger Secret Agent X-9 said...

    I think that if the City actually institutes a downtown court and honestly uses it, this could be a good thing. However, there is only one potential problem: I seem to recall their being a lawsuit filed against the City years ago about people doing community service (such as street cleaning) because they weren't being paid enough or some other ridiculous issue like that. I will have to try and find it.

    Nice blog by the way, it's good to see someone else putting up the good fight here in SF

    -Secret Agent X9

    5:44 AM  
    Blogger Secret Agent X-9 said...

    Um, please don't hold the transposition of "their" and "there" against me in my above comment. It's 0545 after all ;)

    -Secret Agent X-9

    5:47 AM  

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