Seattle Council Cuts Police Budget, Chief Retires; Is Anarchy Next?

Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best has announced she will retire, after the city council cut her pay and reduced her department's budget. (Screen snip, YouTube, KING-TV)

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- Hours after the Seattle City Council voted to reduce the police department budget and cut the police chief’s salary, Police Chief Carmen Best announced she will retire next month, setting off a shockwave reaching from Seattle to Fox News in New York, and now the question arises: Will this lead to anarchy?

The development is making national headlines, and local residents are worried. Popular Seattle talk host John Carlson at KVI-AM already mentioned “Recall” as one possible result of the council action.

Suddenly, the July 16 recommendation to Seattle residents from the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is making lots of sense. CCRKBA advised Seattleites to buy guns, seek competent training and demand that Seattle Police resume taking applications for concealed pistol licenses.

“While the city council may believe crippling its police department is a politically smart move,” CCRKBA Chairman Gottlieb observed at the time, “it’s going to directly impact public safety. Nobody should be surprised when more people buy guns and apply for carry licenses, only in Seattle and King County, applying for a CPL hasn’t been possible since March.”

Ironically, when Seattle adopted its gun and ammunition tax five years ago, it pushed gun shops out of the city, so residents will have to go outside the city to arm themselves.

According to Seattle’s KING 5 News—the local NBC affiliate—the cuts “could reduce the police department by up to 100 officers through layoffs and attrition. Seattle has about 1,400 police officers and the reductions fall far short of the 50% cut to the department that many Black Lives Matter protesters were seeking.”

Best’s impending departure comes nearly two years after she was appointed to the position by Mayor Jenny Durkan. She is the first Black woman to serve as a police chief in the city, and the council’s public reduction of her salary is taking on racial overtones.

Here is the text of a message Best sent to Seattle police officers:

“To the Women and Men of the Seattle Police Department – I wanted to notify you that I will be retiring from the Seattle Police Department, effective September 2nd, 2020. I wanted to hear this from me, but some media have reached this conclusion on their own. This was a difficult decision for me, but when it's time, it's time. I want to thank Mayor Durkan for her continuous support through good time and tough times. I am confident the department will make it through these difficult times. You truly are the best police department in the country, and please trust me when I say, the vast majority of people in Seattle support you and appreciate you. I am impressed daily at your skill, your compassion, and your dedication. I am thankful my command team has agreed to continue serving the department, and that Mayor Durkan has appointed Deputy Chief Adrian Diaz as the interim police Chief of Police. Chief Diaz shares my commitment to this department and has the trust of the community. I look forward to seeing how this department moves forward through the process of re-envisioning public safety. I relish the work that will be done by all of you. After more than 28 years, I am so thankful for the time I spent at SPD. You are my family. You will always be in my heart. We have had tough times before and come out better on the other side. I am glad I pushed through each of those tough times with you. I am grateful for the opportunity to have served as your chief. Remember to take care of one another.”

Ironically, the council member largely responsible for starting the effort to defund police—Socialist firebrand Kshama Sawant—was the sole vote against the cuts because she believes the council did not cut enough money from the police budget. She wanted to slash 50 percent of the agency’s funds.

Sawant and her far-left council colleagues were evidently unmoved by a Sunday rally that brought an estimated 2,000 people to the steps of city hall to support the police department.

Best has been with the department for 28 years. She is highly respected by officers and by the public. But for the past few months, the department has been under siege from far-left demonstrators, protesting under the Black Lives Matter banner since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

In mid-March, Seattle police, along with many other Washington agencies, stopped accepting new CPL applications, using the coronavirus outbreak and social distancing requirements as the reason. But that was more than four months ago, and local residents are tired of waiting.

Yet, people have been buying firearms and ammunition at a record pace, first in reaction to the coronavirus pandemic panic, but now largely due to the kinds of occasionally violent protests that have hit Seattle and other cities in recent weeks. Washington has one of the highest per-capita percentages of concealed carry of any state in the nation, typically falling in the Top Ten states for active carry licenses.

There are concerns that the council’s budget-cutting crusade could turn the entire city into what was experienced over more than two weeks when protesters took over six blocks of the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, calling it the “CHOP” (for Capitol Hill Organized Protest) zone. They kept police largely out of the zone, instead arming volunteer “security” officers.
Police eventually moved in to move the protesters out, but it took two homicides and four other non-fatal shootings to make it happen.

The cuts are not likely to stop. Published reports suggest the city council will consider more reductions for 2021, adding to the alarm many city residents already have.

If the recall is the next step, there is a mechanism recognized in the Seattle municipal code:

“Sec. 2 city council, members

“Subdivision C. POWERS—LIMITATIONS—RECALL: All the powers of the City Council shall be exercised subject to initiative and referendum powers of the people as set forth herein. The members of the City Council shall be subject to recall in the manner provided by law.” (Highlights in original document.)

The city council’s action may play into the state gubernatorial election in November. Two-term Gov. Jay Inslee has been somewhat tepid in his reaction to what has been happening in the city. At one point during a press conference in early June, he was asked about the demonstration that originally established the “CHOP Zone,” and his reply was “That’s news to me.”

Inslee is considered part of the leftward movement of the Democrat party, and his handling of the COVID-19 outbreak by virtually shutting down business in Washington State and then repeatedly moving back a date for re-opening has infuriated conservatives, and at least some Democrats.

With this latest development in Seattle, his opponent’s occupation—police chief in a small Eastern Washington city—takes on new overtones. Republican Loren Culp has a ready-made campaign issue thanks to the badge he wears. All of the destructive demonstrations in Seattle have happened on Inslee’s watch.

Since his surprise primary win, Culp has picked up a couple of key endorsements from former rivals for the Republican nomination, yet he still has an uphill battle to win the election Nov. 3.



About Dave WorkmanDave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

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Warlok11
Warlok11
1 month ago

I know that you so called ” good white people ” like to blame antifa, and BLM for the problems. That is the old, ” blame the black people” adag, but the NUMBERS DON’T LIE : In 2020, the Seattle Police Department’s $407 million budget will exceed the city’s entire combined spending on affordable housing ($69.1 million), health and human services ($195.9 million), affordable child care ($6.1 million), libraries ($86 million), the arts ($14.7 million) and parks, zoos and aquariums ($31.8 million). As the twin budgetary crises of COVID-19 and recession loom, austerity-minded politicians have suggested slashing already anemic social service and transit budgets.… Read more »

Camotim
Camotim
1 month ago

And the good citizens have sever restrictions on their right to self-defense.

loveaduck
loveaduck
1 month ago

My birthplace was a great city once. It was a working town with a real port welcoming something other than cruise ships. It was, to a degree, a union town. Some liked it, some didn’t.

Want to get hurt? All you had to do was hit a Seattle cop. People did not screw with them.

There was, and is, racism, but the way to make strides in overcoming it is not by getting rid or, or emasculating the police. Let real justice rule.

Warlok11
Warlok11
1 month ago
Reply to  loveaduck

there was never REAL JUSTICE for people of xolor in seattle. You loved it because you are white, butvfor non whites the seattle police murdered, robbed, and trampled the rights of AMERICAN CITIZENS OF COLOR FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS. The privilege of being white meant they respected you, but seattke aas a “sundown town” for black and brown people. You built it on HATE, and now that hate is being returned. Read the article I posted, IF YOU BELIEVE IN TRUTH.

pdxhk9mm
pdxhk9mm
1 month ago
Reply to  Warlok11

AND here come the Fascists!!

pdxhk9mm
pdxhk9mm
1 month ago
Reply to  Warlok11

Oh yes, no people of color have ever worked hard in their entire lives….racists like you, your time is ending…get use to being part of an ignorant minority….as a white person, you fucking embarrass me to no end….

Tionico
Tionico
1 month ago

Carmen Best is the only thing that stood between utter chaos and surrender, and the slight show of order and upholding the law we did finally see. In a way I’m glad she’s stepping down, as now there is no voice of anything aproaching sanity in that crazy city. Seattle will have to learn the hard way that “the security of a free state” (society) does, in the end, rest upon the shoulders of THE PEOPLE. If they won’t those that are supposed to will realise they don’t have to, and then THEY won’t either, and CHOP is the result,… Read more »

Neanderthal75
Neanderthal75
1 month ago

Dave, You can see from the vast majority of posts, the overarching attitude concerning the problems besetting the “good people of Seattle”, are of their own making! The only sympathy I have is for children oh, and by children I mean pre teens down to babies; everyone else is pretty much getting what they deserve! Part of antifa mob and the BLM mob are teenagers, so they shoulder the responsibility as well. Seattle voters are getting everything they deserve, because they have voted for it, election after election, year after year, decade after decade! The rising crime rate was foretold,… Read more »

loveaduck
loveaduck
1 month ago
Reply to  Neanderthal75

Can’t blame those who didn’t vote for the Socialist turds.

Oldman
Oldman
1 month ago
Reply to  Neanderthal75

Rah rah, go Tigers! Class of ’66. BTW, IN RESPONSE to Dave, I think, Seattle already is in a total state of Anarchy all the way up to the mayor, and if Culp can’t win the Governor’s race you might as well start spending any money you can on inflated ammo prices, because WA is lost. Let it start in Washington.

PMinFl
PMinFl
1 month ago

Haven’t been in Seattle for 52 years. Before Microsoft, Starbucks and Costco…..it used to be a real nice city…..used to be

uncle dudley
uncle dudley
1 month ago

I don’t blame Chief Best for retiring and getting out of the looney bin attitude she has to put up with.
Cutting her salary 40% is what I’ve read in the news and to continue with a city council that is being unrealistic on how to police the city while cutting the force.
Wake up voters in Seattle, get rid of your council.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago

You know what, if the voters/victims of Inslee’s complicity in destroying Seattle is not enough to support his opponent Loren Culp, then they deserve every bad thing coming their way, while the good people vote with their feet.

Mystic Wolf
Mystic Wolf
1 month ago

Yeah look at shecago that city has gone over the cliff and is no longer viable to live in, the thugs and criminals have taken over and the lori leadhead refuses to see what its policies have done,(yeah just let the poor kids run they are doing no damage) yeah that section of the city that got looted and set on fire over the weekend leadhead is now calling that preparations or some such thing now, yeah those businesses are not going th o rebuild or reopen so more lost jobs and more lost taxes all thanks to the hyper… Read more »

Warlok11
Warlok11
1 month ago
Reply to  Mystic Wolf

HMMMM I think you forgot about capone, and moran. Chicago has always been gangland, it’s just that you only celebraye the white gangsters. Capone bombed candy stores that were fronts for liquor spots, and indiscriminately shot up streets with automatic weapons, and grenades, but hey,he is an american hero to you. Liquor was the crack, and heroin of it’s time.

SEMPAI
SEMPAI
1 month ago

2000 people showed up to city hall to support police? Riddle me this why O why haven’t those same 2000 people got together and kikd all the little white millenials out of the city for good ..axe handles and shovel handles if you don’t have guns? They would outnumber them by 1700 people ..WTFFFFFFF? Bunch of pansies!! If you won’t fight for your city because police hands are tied then you deserve what you get. Aug 9th Palatka FL (25 miles fr my house) antifa as well as BLM clowns coming to take down confederate statues. E Mails were sent… Read more »

hippybiker
hippybiker
1 month ago
Reply to  SEMPAI

Yeah! I live in west central Florida and They don’t play that Sh*t here. It’s because they understand that 1 in 10 carry weapons and will use them. Example, Lee county and his statue still stands!

SEMPAI
SEMPAI
1 month ago
Reply to  hippybiker

@ hippybiker
Datz right …( NOT IN DIXIE ) Y’ALL COME BACK NOW…..YA HEAR ? You specially don’t want to meet the Sunshine States 1%s…

RoyD
RoyD
1 month ago
Reply to  hippybiker

By the way, hippybiker, I am still waiting on that apology you owe me. No rush; but, I will continue to remind you of it until you do post it.

RoyD
RoyD
1 month ago
Reply to  RoyD

Since you asked, Will: https://www.ammoland.com/2020/08/2020-democratic-party-platform-declares-total-war-on-2nd-amendment/#axzz6V1UrEevM

I don’t mind criticism when it is deserved. When it is not then amends should be made by the offending party. It is the civilized way.

Warlok11
Warlok11
1 month ago
Reply to  SEMPAI

Yeah we know you love TRAITORS to the united states …

pdxhk9mm
pdxhk9mm
1 month ago
Reply to  Warlok11

Yeah, its funny these so called “internet patriots” all support the rioting and upheaval prior to their little “Civil War”, and they are okay with those “Southern folks” treasonous behavior….I quite literally wish we could let the South secede, we’d be a better country for it….

Bill
Bill
1 month ago

Ansell, I’ve been saying it for about 3 years now, I could see where their crap was gonna go. It’s not hard to look at many of the things these communists do and extrapolate out how they can, and almost always are, abused and what they could lead to next. When I say could I really mean will and I’ve been right more than not.

nrringlee
nrringlee
1 month ago

You get the government you deserve. The City of Seattle, my place of birth has become a clown show over the past three decades. Working stiffs like me have fled to much greener pastures as mindless youths and the dysfunctional fill the void left by our exodus. Now the inmates run the asylum and you see the net result. City Council meetings look like a clown circus with each act trying to trump the other in extreme positions. It is no wonder civil society is falling apart. A disarmed and terrorized population controlled and herded by armed Bolshevik mobs is… Read more »

Matt in Oklahoma
Matt in Oklahoma
1 month ago

They voted them in, they supported or remain quiet about the defunding so you get what you get

RoyD
RoyD
1 month ago

That’s the way it works. It is funny how “thinking” is so hard for so many people. What’s that old saying; “You made your bed, now lay in it.”

Superman
Superman
1 month ago

“Highly respected by officers”? Nope. Zero respect from law abiding gun owners as she regularly went to Olympia to bang the anti-gun drum. Inslee “somewhat tepid”? Nope; totally absent and clueless. And forget about Culp becoming governor. A cop elected to statewide office especially THIS year? Fuggiddaboudit!

Ansel Hazen
Ansel Hazen
1 month ago
Reply to  Superman

This country was born of violence in order to throw off the chains of tyranny.
Our Founding Fathers warned us of what would need to be done if the time came that it needed to be done again.Because bully’s don’t stop bullying when asked nicely to cease their activity. They need to be forcefully stopped.

Warlok11
Warlok11
1 month ago
Reply to  Ansel Hazen

THAT INCLUDES BULLIES WITH BADGES, IF A POLICE OFFICER DOESN’T RESPECT A CITIZENS 1ST, 4TH, AND 5TH AMENDMENT RIGHTS, THEN IT IS THE CITIZENS DUTY TO EDUCATE HIM WITH THE 2ND …

pdxhk9mm
pdxhk9mm
1 month ago
Reply to  Ansel Hazen

yeah, you ARE talking about the Fascist cops, right? Cause they are the only “bullies” in the USA currently…..