Last week I wrote about how Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) provided $250,437 to the Vancouver Area Network Of Drug Users (VANDU), and how they are working to expand their coverage to reach Abbotsford (and funding from Fraser Health). I also discussed how this same group pays addicts to join activist movements and block traffic. Nothing mobilizes addicts more than the prospect of free drug money!
Well, after digging deeper into investigating this group- it gets much worse. It appears that VANDU has now begun a campaign to start harassing the police…
I was excited when I first heard about Cop Watch- having seen my share of police violence, I could see the value having concerned citizens keeping an eye on the police. I’ve done this myself, using a video to help keep the peace while the Toronto Police Service tried to illegally evict homeless members of Occupy Toronto from Osgoode Hall. Unfortunately, in that case, some police officers became rabidly violent a couple of days later…
So, I have no objections to the concept of Cop Watch- that said, watching what they have been up to in Vancouver, I am horribly disgusted by their behaviour. There’s a fine line between observing the police and harassing them- and Vancouver Cop Watch have crossed that line by a few too many meters.
I discovered the connection between Cop Watch and VANDU a few days ago through their page on Facebook. Here’s the conversation I had with them:
It seems that the founder of VANDU, Ann Livingston, is also pushing Cop Watch- that is a bit of surprise to me- particularly after looking at the crap they are publishing on the Internet these days. Let me share a few examples with you, and explain my objections:
Ann, can you please explain to me the value of this message? I just don’t see the value of using name-calling tactics against the police. If anything, this will only make things worse.
More of the same here- only, this time, against the Vancouver PD. How is this useful?
This time they are writing about the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood Council’s street market. Notice how they complain that the police are carrying guns (standard uniform for all cops), they make a jab at the police about Tim Horton’s doughnuts, and they then make their standard comment about the police executing people. Dear Ann, how can this be acceptable behaviour?
Here they are complaining about police violence after a man is arrested or yelling at the police! That said, they haven’t filed a complaint about the incident- why is that? Well, obviously, because they are embellishing a little- don’t you think? Well, that embellishment is dangerous! First, by trivializing what police violence is, they are weakening the case against real police violence. More important, they are continuing to aggravate the police. This can only help build a bigger divide between the police and people in the community.
And then, in the last day, it looks like they are continuing the campaign of FUD about the Missing Women’s Inquiry- very similar to what I wrote about yesterday when I asked if Wally Oppal is being setup to look like he is working with the Hell’s Angels. First they tweet the story that David Eby shared:
Vancouver Cop Watch looks to me like another extension of the DTES povertarian’s campaign to build division between the police and the area’s residents. It is a lot like Harsha Walia’s Black Bloc only without the ninja costumes And rather than walking down the street chanting about killing and making love to the police, they instead take pictures and publish snide comments on the Internet.
And, of course, all roads cop-hating lead to our old friend David Eby. If you read my article about his conflict-of-interest between being a politician and the head of the BC Civil Liberties Association, you’ll remember that Eby has a connection with Cop Watch. After all, anyone who makes false accusations about the police is welcomed by Eby with open arms.
Ann Livingston needs to stop this silliness right now! What she is doing is only going to result in the police being more agitated, and will most likely end-up with someone getting hurt. I don’t understand how a registered nurse can be so irresponsible as she is- particularly when she is taking 100’s of thousands of dollars in government funding for VANDU. This is shameful, horrible behaviour. Fraser Health should take note of this behaviour and avoid funding VANDU’s aspirations to expand to Abbotsford too.
Just another day following Vancouver’s DTES poverty pimps…