San Francisco in 2024

San Francisco in 2024
A copy of George Orwell’s novel “1984.” (Chung I Ho/The Epoch Times)
Rich Cibotti

Before the world changed with the onset of COVID-19, San Francisco was dealing with real problems, such as throwing widely used terms “down the memory hole.” This was done—and continues today—in order to create and control a new alternate reality that desperately tries to conceal the failings of progressive political policies.

“Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.”—George Orwell, “1984”

San Francisco took a very important step toward this new progressive “criminal justice” in late 2019. No, we didn’t stop crime. No, we didn’t stop all the open drug trading and use. No, we didn’t stop people from urinating and defecating in the streets. And the streets aren’t any cleaner or safer. What was accomplished, you may ask? The San Francisco Board of Supervisors adopted new rules for referring to people in the criminal justice system.

Now there are no more convicted felons. Instead, we have “Justice-Involved Persons.” I'll use the abbreviation JIPs for brevity. Addicts are a thing of the past; I think you’re referring to “a person with a history of substance abuse.” And a released offender or parolee? You mean a “returning resident.”

Since then, we’ve witnessed the death of George Floyd and the rise of the “Defund the Police” movement. Those events led to the police themselves becoming the object of ire.

So in keeping with the theme, the words “police” and “cop” seem to have very negative connotations. In fact, I don’t think we should be “labeled” as police anymore. Anyone who watches the news now thinks that all cops are racist, and it gives us all a bad name. I think we'll now be called “Justice Education Professionals,” or JEPs. Now we can finally shed the stigma of the police and cop labels. Think how much better the SFJEPD sounds. Thank goodness we finally solved this major (fake) problem.

But why should the absurdity stop there? I have the next step in this brave endeavor to change society. Why not eliminate felonies altogether? You can’t have felons if there are no felonies.

Think of all the fake changes that will occur if we dump the word “felony.” Felony sounds bad and is very mean to the JIPs. So let’s stop using that dirty word. It will be the best CompStat meeting ever—a reduction of 100 percent or more in felonious crime.

Robbery also sounds bad; let’s relabel that “unrequested wealth redistribution.” An intruder who decides to break into your house; no, that’s not right—sounds more like an “unannounced and uninvited houseguest.” Homeless also has a stigma to it now; let’s go with “housing-challenged individual.” Of course, the actual behavior won’t change, but that doesn’t matter. We'll all feel good about it and the great progress we’ve made. And feelings are all that really matter.

By the time you read this, I may have been sent to the reeducation camp so I can be sensitized to this new vernacular and atone for my thoughtcrimes. If so, please forget all that I’ve said and know that the Party is correct: two plus two really is five.

San Francisco can continue to perform its doublethink. They can even spread it to the whole state. None of it will change the fact that we have many JIPs committing bad acts and not being held accountable. What will 2024 look like in San Francisco?

JEPs in 2024

Then there’s us, the JEPs, in 2024. Still driving the same Ford Crown Victorias, now with even less paint and going on 297,000 miles. Sure, each car is a patchwork made up of body panels from other cars that didn’t make it. Our quilt of a patrol car is on its third transmission and has no brakes, and all of them have siren boxes older than the cops driving them, but why choose a new car? The cage fits this car. Don’t want to buy a different cage; that would be too expensive. Ford has long stopped making replacement parts, so when cars go down, foot beats go up. Hopefully, some newer Ford Explorers are on the way, but money is still tight, thanks to the “defund movement.”

When we’re not walking the beat or driving our one patrol car around, most of us are sitting behind a desk at the computer. The detention you made earlier now requires a couple hours of paperwork. First, make sure to tag the body-worn camera footage. Then fill out the state-mandated questionnaire for detaining someone.

In addition to the state’s expanded questionnaire and database, San Francisco has now created its own system that requires you to answer 133 questions about each person you encounter. It’s all redundant and the same information as the state system, but retyping it is very important busy work you need to do.

You also must give your business card to every person you talk to. This leads to a giant uptick in Department of Police Accountability (DPA) complaints because the whole backside of the card directs people to DPA.

But DPA and the SFJEPD have also created the new Proactive Complaint Management System. Now the last thing you do is complete your “Pre-Complaint Response Form.”

This form details your interaction and responds to a complaint that hasn’t been generated yet. That way, once the complaint does come in, DPA already has more information to use against you if you missed dotting an “i” or crossing a “t” in the many redundant papers you complete. No wonder people can’t find a cop when they need one.

This bleak satirical future sadly feels like where we’re headed. So keep changing the definitions and terms all you want. It still can’t hide the years of failed social policy that have created and continue to exacerbate the problems in San Francisco. Since the politicians appear unable or unwilling to fix anything here, they’ve instead resorted to an everchanging name game, like musical chairs, to distract from their failings.

“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”—George Orwell, “1984”

Outside the station, the JIPs are running wild. The JEPs are stuck inside trying to catch up on the mountain of redundant paperwork, longing to get out so they can go to another call and do the job they signed up for.

Meanwhile, in city hall, they’ve realized that JIP sounds bad and may offend people. So it’s time to change their own term, Justice-Involved Person, to something less offensive. They’ve voted to go with Consequence Oriented Neighbor, or CON for short.

We’re going to need a bigger memory hole.

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
Rich Cibotti is a Sergeant in the San Francisco Police Department and a primary instructor at the SFPD Police Academy, and he is also a licensed attorney. Visit his site at All opinions are Rich Cibotti's own and do not reflect that of the San Francisco Police Department.
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