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Why the San Francisco Mayor Just Pivoted on Policing

London Breed’s pledge to be “more aggressive with law enforcement” is the latest — and perhaps the most stark — example of shifting crime rhetoric.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed speaking during an event in September. This week, she hardened her crime-fighting stance, with a pledge to be less tolerant of the “bullsh*t that has destroyed our city.” 

San Francisco Mayor London Breed speaking during an event in September. This week, she hardened her crime-fighting stance, with a pledge to be less tolerant of the “bullsh*t that has destroyed our city.” 

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

It was seen by many residents as a dramatic turning point. Standing in City Hall on Tuesday, San Francisco Mayor London Breed pledged to end “the reign of criminals who are destroying our city.” And she laid out a plan to be “less tolerant” of what she called “bullsh*t”: The city would be to be “more aggressive with law enforcement,” with a new plan to direct emergency overtime funding to the police. 

On Friday, she went a step further, declaring a state of emergency in the city’s Tenderloin district, where her new law enforcement efforts are focused.