I don’t doubt that almost every elected office is important, but a few stand out.
I’m sure you’re aware that the past few months have been especially violent in Fairfield. That makes the race for Solano County district attorney even more worthy of our attention than usual. Don du Bain is the “sitting” district attorney, and “sitting” may be the appropriate description.
Mr. du Bain is being challenged by prosecutor Krishna Abrams, who is worthy of the designation as the “tough on crime” candidate. It’s not that the incumbent doesn’t care about crime, it’s just he advertises how “tough” he is on domestic violence.
Let’s ask this question, exaggerated though it might be: Which might you be more wary of – your spouse smashing a frying pan over your head or walking on North Texas Street in Fairfield at 9 p.m. on a Friday? Or renting a place at Parkway Gardens?
We’ve had 31 shootings in the past five weeks, which must be some sort of record. So here is the first sentence from the text of DA du Bain’s campaign flier: “Through District Attorney Don du Bain’s leadership and strong support of measures to break the cycle of domestic violence that tears apart families and disrupts children’s lives, the new Solano Family Justice Center was opened last April.” All well and good, but DA du Bain seems to be putting the cart before the horse.
In my primitive 19th-century mind, I have one criterion for officials in the justice system: Are actual or potential criminals afraid of being caught, and once caught, being punished, by the cops and courts? Since the jobs of the police and the judges pivot around the District Attorney’s Office, our safety depends on who sits in that office.
If you got du Bain’s campaign mailer, you know that prosecutor Krishna Abrams has a tough job in the next few weeks. The incumbents listed as supporters are really a “who’s who” in the county, many of whom I’ve gotten to know and respect over the years. But, reading this very impressive list, I question whether they all realize they may be supporting someone who’s more of a marriage counselor than a crime fighter. It never occurred to me that “counseling for parents and children,” “access to housing and financial aid” and “access to domestic violence crisis shelter” are a vital part of the job description for district attorney.
As I’ve learned more about both the challenger, Abrams, and the incumbent, du Bain, I’m more and more impressed by the difference.
How about perhaps the most important difference, hands-on prosecution of violent crime? The comparison should embarrass Mr. du Bain – it’s about 20-to-1 in Abrams’ favor.
Why would so many support a man who proudly proclaims how much he “cares” about people, and who has not told us what his plan is to reduce the epidemic of violence in our county?
Krishna Abrams is an experienced prosecutor who is at home in the courtroom, unlike Mr. du Bain, the incumbent.
Bud Stevenson, a retired stockbroker, lives in Fairfield. Reach him at [email protected]