Gascón’s Directives only make sense when seen as an attempt to purge feelings of guilt and his embrace of a growing anti-police narrative. Gascón once said he “is haunted by the role he played in a system that disproportionally locked up African–Americans and Latinos”. He described how his perception of policing and the role of the police changed over the years. He went from believing “we were the guardians of our society” to recognizing ‘the poison of my own work, and how we were destroying communities.” He came to conclude that “the police were oppressors and that the criminal justice system was created to perpetuate this oppression.”
Did he help destroy communities? There is no evidence he arrested suspects without probable cause, created inaccurate police reports, or planted contraband. Gascón’s guilt and his decision to jettison enhancements and strike priors stem not from personal behavior, but rather his prior collaboration as a cop with a criminal justice system he now maintains is at its heart “racist.” His new Directives embrace this anti-law enforcement ideology, one that claims, without evidence, that the racial disparity evidenced by arrest and imprisonment is undeniable proof of “systemic racism” and “mass incarceration.” In neither case are these conclusions based on fact or analysis. Gascón, like his fellow ideologues, cherry picks disparities. They point to disproportionate numbers of Blacks incarcerated, but ignore the fact that Blacks disproportionately commit serious crimes and are disproportionately the victims. Gascón repeats the “mass incarceration” canard without defining what he perceives as the problem. Does he believe inmates in L.A. jails were rounded up without due process like Japanese-Americans placed in internment camps during WWII? Does he not recognize that 90 percent of inmates in the jail are accused or convicted of serious felonies? Does he define “mass-incarceration” as incarceration over a specific number, and that once that number is attained, all arrests and prosecutions of murderers, rapists, and child molesters should cease?