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Portland is eliminating gang databases – you already know why

Pat Gray Unleashed
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Gang databases are a thing of the past in Portland. Authorities last week announced they are doing away with their database of suspected gang members starting next month because it unfairly targets minorities.

The Oregonian reported that 81 percent of the 359 “criminal gang affiliates” were ethnic. Oregon police officers say they aren’t ignoring the problem, they’re just doing away with gang designation.

Here’s what’s happening:

  • A list police use to identify gang affiliation of someone who self-identified as a gang member, participated in gang imitation activity, or committed a crime in a display of gang membership, will no longer exist
  • Police will send out letters alerting those on the gang designation list that they’re being removed
  • The policy will go into effect October 15
  • When officers run a name that was on the list, a red flag would pop up alerting the officers of potential gang affiliation. These red flags in the system will no longer be used.
  • Instead, police will document criminal conduct that will be flagged on a computer screen to focus on the crime and not the person
  • Officers are being instructed to refrain from racially profiling alleged gang members and criminals

What are people saying?

Activists champion the move and have advocated for this for years. Capt. Mike Krantz said, "Gang violence isn't going to go away. There are still crimes attributed to known gang sets. There are still criminal gang members. That doesn't go away because we don't have a gang designation. We're not pretending gang violence doesn't exist. We're just taking this one thing away."

A former Bloods gang member turned mentor called the move a “beautiful thing.”

Pat's Take: 

Some people deserve a label and if you're a gang member, according to Pat Gray, you should be labeled a gang member. "It's just that simple." Pat believes we should do what Israel does: profile people.

"If they are the gang members, then you label them as such. We're just in real trouble. If you can't call somebody what they are, if you can't say, 'That's a gang member and we're going to keep an eye on them, or that's a gang member and they've committed a crime and we're just going to try them for it,' then we're just going to break into chaos here."

"Why would you do that?" said Pat.

To see more from Pat Gray, visit his channel on TheBlaze and watch "Pat Gray Unleashed" live weekdays noon–3 p.m. ET or anytime on demand at TheBlaze TV.

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