via S F Gate:
Mayor Ed Lee remains resolute in implementing some form of a stop-and-frisk program – even if it’s not called that – in the wake of Friday’s horrific movie theater mass shooting in Aurora, Colo., and a trip to Philadelphia, which has its own controversial stop-and-frisk program.
“I am as, if not more, committed, and especially in light of the massacre that occurred in Aurora, but also the review of what’s happening in New York and Philadelphia and Chicago and the crime that’s committed,” Lee said Monday on the sidelines of an announcement about federal transportation funding.
Stop-and-frisk policing, where officers stop and search people they deem suspicious in an attempt to get illegal guns off the streets, has routinely been likened to racial profiling.
Lee’s consideration of such a practice has triggered an outcry.
Last week, the City Hall steps were filled with politicians and people carrying signs reading “Am I suspicious?” and calling stop and frisk the new Jim Crow. The protesters delivered 2,000 signatures decrying stop and frisk to the mayor’s office. Later, the Board of Supervisorsunanimously passed a resolution opposing bringing the controversial policy to San Francisco.
Lee insists that he’s not considering any proposal that would violate someone’s constitutional rights, but he also wouldn’t say what specific policy changes he is weighing after a U.S. Conference of Mayor’s session in Philadelphia where he also met with the city’s top cop, Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.
Last year, Philadelphia officials agreed to court monitoring of their stop-and-frisk program to settle a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union and others, who alleged that police officers used racial profiling and stopped people with little or no justification.
“I’m not into any program that will violate people’s rights, but we’ve got to get to the guns,” Lee said Monday.
“There are individuals out there who are not listening, who are not only creating disputes, but they’re ending those disputes with the use of these guns. We’ve got to get to them,” Lee said. “That’s why I’ve been contemplating some kind of authority to put some fear into these kids that they can’t be carrying these guns thinking they can resolve all their problems with them.”
Lee did acknowledge that the term “stop-and-frisk” is freighted with negative connotations.
“We’ll be utilizing different phrases,” Lee said, “but clearly getting to the guns in the number one theme.”