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Written by on June 30, 2021

Welcome to another edition of Ringside Politics with Jeff Crouere

Today’s Hot Topics:

1) The fallout continues after a controversial vote by the Oakland City Council Thursday night to cut nearly 20 million dollars from its police force. While it sounds like a lot of money, it’s a small fraction of what many in the defund movement wanted. Still, some question the timing, in a city that has recorded more than 60 murders, less than halfway through the year.

Oakland’s City Council President is among those celebrating a new budget that shifts $18 million dollars from the police department to other programs, including those designed to prevent crime.

“I think yesterday was very historic,” said Nikki Fortunato Bas. “We’ll be standing up a program called MACRO for alternative crisis responders, to handle mental health issues. We will be having our department of transportation handle issues that police typically handle, blocked driveways, auto tows.”

More than $300,000 diverted from policing will go to the Youth Employment Program in East Oakland, which aims to keep young people off the streets.

2) During an appearance on CNN Tuesday evening, Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar doubled-down on her comments equating Israel and the United States to terror organizations or state sponsors of terror.

When host Jake Tapper asked the congresswoman whether she regretted making the comparison, she responded, “I don’t.”

“I think it’s really important to think back to the point that I was trying to make. Obviously, I was addressing Secretary of State Blinken. The cases are put together in front of the ICC, the ICC has been investigating…,” she continued.

In the specific tweet that drew ire and backlash from Republican lawmakers, Omar wrote, “We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.”

3) A US hammer thrower turned away from the American flag as the national anthem played while she and two other athletes stood on the podium at the Olympic trials Saturday, later saying she was “pissed” that “The Star-Spangled Banner” played as she received her bronze medal.

Gwen Berry — who qualified for her second US Olympic team during the trials — shifted to face the stands rather than the flag before holding up a black shirt that read, “Activist Athlete.”

“I feel like it was a setup, and they did it on purpose,” Berry said of the anthem being played. “I was pissed, to be honest.

“They had enough opportunities to play the national anthem before we got up there,” Berry said in Oregon, where the trials are being held. “I was thinking about what I should do. Eventually I stayed there and I swayed, I put my shirt over my head.

4) Former TV actress Allison Mack was sentenced on Wednesday to three years in prison after pleading guilty to charges she manipulated women into becoming sex slaves within the NXIVM organization.

Mack — best known for her role as a young Superman’s close friend on the series “Smallville” — appeared in front of Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis in Brooklyn federal court.

Today’s Guests:

1) Dylan Howard, Author of Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales

2) Simulcast with Bill Martinez, host of Bill Martinez Live

3) Raphaelle O’Neil – guerilla journalist, writer, public speaker and project manager

4) John Raymond, Founding Pastor, New Horizon Church

5) Dr. Stephen Meyer, Author of “Return of the GOD Hypothesis: Three Discoveries that Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe”