I am responding to the county commissioners and their response to the BLM movement. I am Kara. I'm one of your local public defenders. I have been for the last 16 years.
I am glad to hear you are considering this issue. It's important. I work in the system too. I also know and like many of the officers personally. But I don't know any of you. I haven't seen any of you at at my office. Not once in 16 years. Nor have I seen you in court watching our proceedings. If you would like to know more about what systemic problems mean, I'd be happy to talk to any one of you.
You mention you don't think the individuals in the system are racist. Well, that's because we aren't talking about individual racism — we're talking about a systemic problem. If it were a problem of one cop being a jerk, we public defenders would be calling that person out. Instead, it's a series of small little choices that add up to a disparate impact. Hundreds of choices over the course of any given criminal case that involve the police, the defense attorneys, the DAs, the judges. Every step of the way.
If you are still confused and want to have an honest discussion, my door is always open! I'd love to talk to you. At the courthouse. At my office. Wherever. It would be nice meeting you guys.