OPINION: Chronicle Columnist is Again Smearing Oakland

By Elmano Gonsalves

San Francisco Chronicle columnist Chip Johnson

OAKLAND | OPINION | Chip Johnson, it seems that your on-going vendetta against Jean Quan and the city of Oakland continues unabated. The San Francisco-centric and slanted media goes after Oakland Mayor Jean Quan as if she were Kim Kardashian. Quan makes news when she gets a parking ticket, is involved in a fender bender, when her car window gets smashed, when she’s talking on her cell phone, when her purse gets stolen, etc.

It’s all fun and games for the selective San Francisco-centric media who could care less about what San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee is up to. Lee is not questioned about a 22 percent increase in crime in 2013. Lee goes on with his business as tourists are shot in San Francisco. He is undisturbed as tourists and KRON-TV have their cameras stolen at gunpoint. No one writes a column when a 14-year-old boy is murdered in San Francisco.

Chip, you like to embellish any negative news or crime numbers when it comes to Oakland. You stated that crime in Oakland under Quan was ” the deepest and widest” it had ever been. Once again you’re making things up. In 1992 there were 175 homicides in Oakland. The 1980s and 1990s saw much higher crime rates. The robbery numbers the media likes to pin on Oakland had to do with smart phone thefts which included 75 percent of all robberies in Oakland in 2012. San Francisco had the same problem, but fudged the robbery figures by classifying cell phone robberies as thefts.

You may think that you’re helping to insure that Jean Quan loses the election, but what you’re really doing is exposing San Francisco’s disdain for any progress in Oakland.
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Chip, it’s interesting that you make no mention of how much crime has come down in Oakland in the last two years. You’re not Interested in the record low 48 non-justifiable homicides in Oakland as of Sept. 9. You know Oakland’s homicide, robbery, and residential burglary numbers are down by over 30 percent in 2014. You know that Oakland has a chance to record the lowest homicide count since the 1960’s. Why aren’t you writing about the record low crime rates instead of once again smearing Oakland?

Unfortunately, this has been your method of operation for many, many years as a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle. You bury the good news and the record low crime numbers since it doesn’t fit your anti-Oakland agenda and the narrative that Oakland is a “crime infested ” and “impoverished city” which you and your fellow San Francisco-centric colleagues want so desperately to promote and perpetuate.

Folks in Oakland understand that you’ve had an anti-Oakland agenda for a very long time. No one likes a bully. You may think that you’re helping to insure that Jean Quan loses the election but what you’re really doing is exposing San Francisco’s disdain for any progress in Oakland. Oaklanders don’t like bullies with agendas working for a newspaper in a neighboring city which attempts to define Oakland on a daily basis with selective reporting.

Your anti-Quan agenda is going to backfire and I predict Jean Quan will get re-elected. Is she the best candidate with the best leadership skills? Probably not. Has she been unfairly targeted by you and your San Francisco-entric media colleagues? Absolutely.

Elmano Gonsalves is a former Oakland resident who resides in the East Bay. In August, his criticisms of the San Francisco media’s reporting of Oakland was featured in the East Bay Express.

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