I applaud Change SSF and Councilmember James Coleman for pressing the South San Francisco City Council to end the requirement to register bicycles to reduce unnecessary and potentially dangerous contacts between armed police officers and residents (“Social justice advocates call for policy changes” in the May 17 edition of the Daily Journal).
And this begs the question, “Why would we not seek to minimize any encounters with the police?” The police are among the few in our society with authority to harm people. Qualified immunity provides the police immunity from prosecution when they do harm or kill individuals. Are armed police, protected by qualified immunity, necessary for routine traffic stops, wellness checks, presence in schools?
It’s become clear that this immunity has facilitated reckless behavior costing innocent people their lives. I’m encouraged by the continued work of Change SSF and organizations like it that take the safety of citizens seriously and do something about it.