San Francisco lawmaker pitches CAREN Act to outlaw ‘race-based and racially-charged’ 911 calls

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San Francisco supervisor Shamann Walton joined “The Story” Wednesday to discuss the CAREN Act, Walton’s proposed legislation that would punish so-called “false racially biased emergency reports.”

“If you look at what’s been happening across the country, you see people making these frivolous and these arbitrary 911 calls,” Walton told host Trace Gallagher. “And so what happens? You put people of color in contact with law enforcement. And in some cases, there’s some very dire consequences that can lead to harm to human beings.

“But in some cases, they’ve also led to death,” Walton went on. “So no one should be calling 911 to weaponize 911 against people of color, black people or any other protected class.”

The CAREN Act stands for Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies. The name is a play on “Karen,” a pejorative term that has come to prominence to label a demanding, middle-aged white woman who displays a sense of overbearing entitlement in various societal confrontations.

The term gained worldwide currency after a May 25 incident involving Amy Cooper, a White woman who called police on a African-American birdwatcher who had confronted Cooper about her dog being off its leash in Central Park’s Ramble.

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