Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is prevented from running for another four years in office this November because of term limits. This could conceivably turn out to be some great news for Angelinos, but that depends entirely on who winds up replacing him. One candidate that hasn’t drawn much attention thus far is a woman named Gina Viola. (Or at least she appears to be a woman. I’m no biologist, after all.) She’s an activist who belongs to a group called White People 4 Black Lives and she has drawn the endorsement of the L.A. chapter of Black Lives Matter. That association appears to be almost the entirety of her platform in this campaign. She marched with BLM in all of the George Floyd protests and now she’s running for mayor on a promise to completely do away with the entire Los Angeles Police Department and divert all of its funding to “social services.” (LA Times)
Los Angeles activist Gina Viola marched in the streets with thousands of frustrated Angelenos two years ago after George Floyd’s murder. A member of an anti-racist group for white people, she was overwhelmed to see the support for Black lives.
Now, Viola finds herself in television studios and on debate stages, explaining why she should be elected to replace Mayor Eric Garcetti in the June 7 election.
She’s drawn support from leaders of Black Lives Matter-Los Angeles and left-leaning activists who agree with the central message of her campaign: Eliminating the Los Angeles Police Department over time and redirecting the money toward social services.
So Gina Viola is running on an “abolish the police” platform without actually using the word “abolish.” She may have attracted the support of BLM in the City of Angels, but that’s about all the support she’s getting. She has raised a grand total of $40,000 in donations and has consistently polled in single digits. She’s currently running dead last. (To be fair, she was slightly ahead of Councilman Joe Buscaino, but he has since dropped out of the race.)
I wouldn’t bring up such a dark horse candidate here except for the case study she offers on how quickly the political landscape has been shifting in California’s larger cities this year. Can Viola truly be so tone-deaf as to not recognize what’s happening around her? The candidate currently leading in the polls is Rick Caruso, who we looked at here last weekend. While Caruso has a number of other agenda items on his platform, his primary claim to fame is a plan that is the diametric opposite of Gina Viola’s. Caruso, a former Republican, wants to refund the police and add 1,600 officers to the currently depleted ranks of the LAPD.
Both of these candidates are out there on a daily basis, banging the drum and drawing attention to their agendas. One of them is surging into the lead. The other has the support of BLM and possibly a few of her relatives. Why do you suppose that is?
As in too many other cities, crime is out of control in Los Angeles. The criminals that cops do manage to catch rarely spend any serious time behind bars thanks to the soft-on-crime policies of DA George Gascon. Officials are telling residents of Hollywood not to wear any expensive jewelry outside because they can’t be sure that pedestrians won’t be robbed at gunpoint or knifepoint in broad daylight. People are sick of it and nobody is talking about the “abolish the police” movement except for BLM. They’ve already seen what happens when you defund the police and the picture is not pretty. We don’t know if Rick Caruso will wind up winning and becoming the mayor yet. But I’m fairly sure that you can all safely bet the entire ranch that Eric Garcetti will not be replaced by Gina Viola.