I used to live at 68th and MacArthur. I had been living in San Francisco for 15 years and just bought one of the new Parkwoods condominiums. Actually, I was doing a foundation inspection on building 5 of the project and went offline to check out the models before I headed back to the office. One of the models had interesting angular lines. There were two of these types of units at each end of each building on each floor. One of those would work for my situation, so I went down and talked to the sales office. We ended up walking the entire project and I chose one that while near the front had no one across from it and was high enough that no one could see in and the views from the windows were of the hillside, since the project set in a bowl in the Oakland hills. For two years every morning I woke up and looked out onto a green hillside that was only occasionally different when GoatsRus came to keep the grass down.
The builder was slow in getting my unit finished so I lived for about six months with some friends of mine who had a house at 68th and MacArthur. They had Cody the greyhound who lived out his twilight years with me here in Concord, Petie the Boston and Edie the pug. And Xica the devil dog. My friends had been broken into but he was an ex-Marine so he fixed the place so it would not be breeched again. It wasn’t. And really God help anybody who came into that house when he was there. We kept all the vehicles behind a locked gate, the front door was fortified and had a 4X4 protecting it. The back door was steel. Beyond all the dogs who waited for you next to the one window that was questionable, there was an alarm. That didn’t stop the riff raff from being around. I remember in particular one night when the helicopters were out. I was grilling swordfish in the back yard. I took Xica and a butcher knife with me every time I went out to check on my dinner. Then the chopper started zeroing in on us and I hid in the house while they searched the yard with those lights they have on the copper choppers. Then they busted the little asshole in the neighbor’s yard. And my dinner was ruined.
Once I was at Fort Dave everything was cool, but I hated driving in to that house. A lot of crap happened down there. There was a cemetery at the end of the block and at the end of that block was Eastmont Mall. A horribly thought out project that has probably lost a lot of people a lot of money. Others have lost their lives down there. There’s a police substation down there and they’ve even had someone shot IN FRONT of the substation. It’s that bad.
So making traffic stops down there is like shooting fish in a barrel. Chances are you’re going to get a parole violation at the very least, probably a lot more. Over 3000 parolees live in Oakland. It’s for my money one of the roughest areas on the West Coast. Certainly top ten. 98th is worse, but not by much. And something horrible happened there the other day. And something amazing happened too. Some little shit stain who had a criminal record as long as your arm decided he wasn’t going to be taken alive. Four men won’t return to their families now. Four men who worked to keep that craphole of a City safe. Oakland motorcycle cops are tough SOB’s. I haven’t met a one that wasn’t 1)actually a nice guy 2) really cared about keeping that town safe. So from that standpoint to me the loss is even worse. One of the guys lived here in Concord. It’s a horrible tragedy.
The things that send me to the moon are the fact that this little shit stain had access to a weapon like that. Hey NRA! Hey Gun lobby! How about stepping up to the plate on that one? Exactly why should we have the right to weapons like that? There is no reason for a weapon like that to be on the street ever. Period. None. The right to bear arms, the Second Amendment was written in 1789 and ratified in 1791. When it was written “arms” consisted of muskets and pistols that had to be hand loaded. I think you can own muskets all day long. The authors never could have dreamed of the fire power we have today and we can’t begin to interpret how that Amendment would have been written had they known that two bursts from a musket could kill four policemen who were just doing their jobs. The gun lobby and NRA have the blood of these men on their hands. Enough.
And something amazing did happen that day. In Oakland there were 145 homicides last year. Solving these homicides is arduous at best because of the “snitch” culture. In Oakland you can’t tell the police what you saw or you’ll be next. Where did that come from? Ask the 3000 parolees. They’ve just taken the prison culture home with them and made law abiding citizens live by it. Enough. New rule: You cannot be outside of your own home with a gun in your possession in Oakland. If you don’t have your hipwaders, a duck hunting jacket on, a duck license in your pocket and an orange freaking cap, you can’t have a weapon in your car or on your person. Or you’re jacked up, long time. Like 10 years worth of long time. And it’s time to get these asshole prisoners back to work. We’re short of prisons yet we got a bunch of assmonkeys sitting on their butts on our dime. Get a shovel asshole. Get some mortar and build a damned prison. And while you’re at it, you will have acquired a marketable skill so you can find work once you’re released. Problem solved. It’s hard to belong to a prison gang when you’re working all day long, attached to each other by a chain. But in spite of that culture in Oakland, something amazing happened. In that crap neighborhood a man ran into the bloodstained street and administered CPR until the ambulance arrived. A woman called the cops and told them where this little shit stain was holed up. She was quoted as saying “We’ve got to remove the word “snitch” from our vocabulary”. Yes we do. And a community might be ready to say Enough. I hear ya.