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Right in Porterville
by A. L. "LUCKY" Lucketta

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Print | Who do you trust in Porterville ?
Right in Porterville - Mar 09 2008
by A. L. "LUCKY" Lucketta : editor@portervillepost.com

As elections come and go, political leaders and campaigns appear to be putting their trust more on polls than on the people, and the people appear to know this as well. So, the Post conducted a quick one day street-survey about who the people trust regarding, politicians, police, the media and gangs.

75 people in the Porterville area were asked 10 simple questions. 42 were men and 33 were women. Their ages ranged from 16 all the way to 62. The survey was taken in 14 different locations in Porterville. 4 businesses allowed the Post to conduct the survey in and or around their establishments and 3 declined. The remaining locations were your basic on the street survey. And last but not least, 29 of the 75 survey's were directly answered by the participants themselves, while the remaining 46 allowed the Post to document their answers in front of them.

Listed below are the results of this street-survey and my observations and impressions.

Porterville Post Survey : 3/8/08
YesNo
1.) Do you trust the police to tell the truth about gangs ?3837
2.) Do you trust the papers to tell the truth about gangs ?2748
3.) Do you trust television news to tell the truth about gangs ?3441
4.) Do you trust your neighbor to start a neighborhood watch ?4530
5.) Do you trust the current city council to tell the truth about gangs ?2352
6.) Do you think it's too late for a Gang Summt in Porterville ?1362
7.) Do you think gang interventionists / preventionists are needed ?6213
8.) Do you think gang inter / prev and the police can work together ?5520
9.) Do you know or have you heard about Gang Watchers ?2451
10.) Do you care anymore about the gang problem ?678

Since I, A. L. "LUCKY" Lucketta, personally conducted this poll and retain the collective and true result's, it would be fair to say, that there is a degree of bias on my part in reporting what I also seen and heard. Most survey's just run the numbers and let you decide ... hoping for the results that benefit their client's -- who paid for that poll or survey. Just so we're clear on this part, no one paid the Post for this survey !

HERE'S THE POST ANALYSIS :

Question #1.) Do you trust the police to tell the truth about gangs ?
As you can tell, the answers to this question brought no clear results, unless you were there taking the poll. For the most part, those who stated they believed the police were telling the truth about gangs, presented a bit skidish and standoffish -- as if they hoped by saying yes, it was true. These folks shared few stories regarding what they personally knew about the police and gangs. As far as the Post observed, they hoped the polce were telling the truth. Now ... those who siad they didn't trust the police to tell the truth about gangs had more stories to tell regarding their decision to vote no. Some had to do with what they heard {6-8} and some from negative contact with the law {7-10}. And just so you know, the Post also surveyed 8 police type authorities -- of which 6/8 answered NO !

Question #2.) Do you trust the papers to tell the truth about gangs ?
This question generated a lot of conversation and as you can tell didn't fair that well. Those who personally penned their answers NO, zipped right through the first 3-4 questions. Those who were polled and penned by the Post, wanted to share their stories. The Post made them all wait until they completely answered the questions and then listened to their stores as to why they didn't trust the newspapers regarding telling the truth about gangs.

Question #3.) Do you trust television news to tell the truth about gangs ?
This question did a bit better and the main reason people gave for the being on positive side of the poll was the video's and how they were able get to the scene of the crime when the police got there. Most of the negative's about this question from those surveyed ranged from, "They're selling the story and not telling the story," to "They only report what the police tell them to report." But the T.V. media did rate better and the Post interpretd this as "What you see appears more correct than what you read." And or, "It takes less time to watch the news than read the news." However, most of the time all forms of media will receive a press release from the local police and it's up to those in the media to get the story right, get it done quick and to increase their ratings. In that rush to ratings, their stories can and must appear and sound different to avoid plagerism. Most of

Question #4.) Do you trust your neighbor to start a neighborhood watch ?
Notice the change in numbers. This is the first catagory where we see a positive change in the survey. Basically, folks know if their neighbors are going to be part of the problem of part of the solution. Those surveyed and checked the "NO" side, most wanted to tell the Post why and one officer told the Post his neighbor was a known gang member, and disclosed his name. That's as far as the Post is going on that limb. All-in-all, folks still trust their neighbors and trust them more than the police, politicans and the media. The Post take not of that.

Question #5.) Do you trust the current city council to tell the truth about gangs ?
As you can tell, politicians ranked a few survey votes lower than the newspapers. And yes, they told the Post some interesting stories {of which we will follow up on}. Over all, the public's impression of the city council was quite negative. The public stressed that politicians have a code language, one that generically says nothing and the other that denies everything. And with recent allegations of corruption, the surveyees have been forced into a position to disbelieve. And 60% of those in this negative column told the post, they cover for the cops and the cops cover for them. That's the only allegation that the Post will share at this time. We have more to follow up on.

Question #6.) Do you think it's too late for a Gang Summt in Porterville ?
Now we are seeing the heart of the public. Yes, the Post realizes that the public is out of the loop regarding how the local authorities are handling the gang issue, but they still want to believe, it's possible to have all of the players involved and come up with some solutions. What they're not aware of is the change of direction that this current city council had taken ever since Cam Hamilton became the mayor. It was his decision alone to halt the monthly meetings that city council member Pete Martinez arranged with Gang Watchers, local leaders and Church pastors. Just days before this survey was taken, councilman Phillipe Martinez approached the Post and mentioned having a gang summit -- because they now believe they can aquire the needed funding for the meetings and secular programs.

REMEMBER FOLKS, THIS IS AN ELECTION YEAR ! And they think you're too stupid to connect the dots.

Question #7.) Do you think gang interventionists / preventionists are needed ?
WOW ... The public gets this one ! And basically understand that much of what needs to be done has to start in the home and in the streets. The Post's impression on this obvious landslide is two fold. One, they believe that the local police do not have the social skills needed to interact with gang members, gang families or gang neighborhoods. Two, the hispanic culture, comin from Mexico, has many believing ... if the cops in Mexico can be corrupted, then the cops in America can be too. So yes, the Post understands this need as much as the people of Porterville. In coming editions to this survey, the Post will reveal additional finds from our own personal experiences and interactions with gang members.

Question #8.) Do you think gang inter / prev and the police can work together ?
Again ... what was polled and what was really understood were two things. Yes, the public {wants to} believes that social workers and church folks can work with the local police. They also want to believe that these interventionists can also intervene {mediate} with other agencies and police forces -- to get them to cooperate with each other. NOTE : For the most part, that will only happen in the inner "secret" chambers between authories and cities. NOTE # 2 : The department heads will get together if there's funding !!! REMEMBER FOLKS ... This is a job that they do. They protect themselves and their departments first. They depend on the good-natured public to defend themselves and expect you to have your own fund raising to purchase the needed items for neighborhood watches. What this survey question told the Post was simply this, we hope that the interventionists and preventionist can work with the authorities to get them to work together.

Question #9.) Do you know or have you heard about Gang Watchers ?
Not surprizingly, we saw this one coming. In the last 2 years, there has been a virtural "Black-Out" from the local media regarding Gang Watchers. As such, that created a vaccume of information for this area. Three years ago, those numbers were a lot higher. Now, for those who did know about Gang Watchers, the question they asked, was ... "We hadn't read anything lately about what Gang Watchers was doing and all the programs they started and wondered what happened." ANSWER -- The local Free Masons. Yeah ... we got your number.

Question #10.) Do you care anymore about the gang problem ?
An overwhelming resonse from this question - and it basically speaks for itself.


FINAL ANALYSIS :
While most pollster's or surveyer's can't claim scientific evidence with regard to their finds or analysis, nor shall we. However, as you just read, we speculated a bit about what was polled and our own personal interpretation of those numbers and reactions to those questions.

It's now up to you, John-Q Public, to form your own opinions or analysis. The Post will continue taking polls and man-on-the-street survey's and come right back here to report what the numbers are and what we think those numbers represent.

So ... take care and intervene when you can. You are the final authority !

A. L. "LUCKY" Lucketta -- Enjoy !


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