My colleague Mary Chastain reported that Black Lives Matter activists in Wichita, KS, joined their local police department for the First Steps Cookout to bring together their community.

San Diego took a different, though similar approach. City officials, area clergy, and our police representatives came together by our famous Balboa Park fountain in a display of civic unity.

“There is no doubt that our nation is hurting,” San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer told the crowd. “The recent string of unjustifiable deaths cuts all of us deeply. From Dallas to Baton Rouge and (other cities), this loss of innocent lives has left all of us raw.”

Bishop Cornelius Bowser, who is known for hosting vigils for local victims of violent crime, declined to attend today’s rally, saying Faulconer had overlooked vigils, marches and other demonstrations held in response to violence in the city.

“I stand with law enforcement every day, working with them to support victims of violence and their families,” Bowser said. “However, I will not let Mayor Faulconer use me as a pawn for his political agenda during this time of tragedy.”

San Diego Police Chief Shelly Zimmerman, who led the effort to contain the anti-Trump demonstrations during Donald Trump’s San Diego rally in May, indicates the recent attacks on police officers has only served to strengthen her organization’s resolve.

Other area police representatives extended their condolences for the officers killed in Baton Rouge and Dallas.

In the wake of the latest attack on peace officers, members of the local law enforcement community took to social media to express condolences. In a prepared statement, the Chula Vista Police Department announced that its sworn personnel would wear black mourning bands and that its flags would be flown at half staff “to honor those peace officers who paid with their lives.”

“Sadly, our society of freedom and liberty do not come without a cost,” CVPD officials stated. “We grieve with our fellow peace officers across the nation after another fatal attack in Louisiana.”

It turns out the shooter, Gavin Long, had a San Diego connection. He was a former Marine sergeant who did basic training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, followed by the School of Infantry at Camp Pendleton and service as MCAS Miramar.

Here’s to hoping that efforts in Wichita, San Diego, and other American communities stave off a repeat of the Summer of 1968.

(Featured Image via Twitter).


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.