In his weekly coronavirus update last Friday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom who hails from Marin told a story about how the children of a black friend of his were pulled over in Ross for no other reason than they were driving in a white neighborhood.
The governor was using the moment to express sympathy to Black Americans in the wake of the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Only one problem: He got the story wrong and Marin Sheriff Robert Doyle is not happy about it.
The governor told this story:
The children of a black friend of his in Marin were stopped one day on their way to Branson School in Ross.
“They were pulled over by the local sheriff for no other reason than he was driving a car. And he happened to be black.”
With an extended preface about how his children were crying over seeing a Tic-Tok video of a Minneapolis police officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck, Newsom asserted that this was a “day in the life of that one child. It happens every single day in this country.”
We can pass laws, the governor said, “but we’ve got to fundamentally change who we are.”
According to the governor’s Marin friend, who was reached over the weekend by the Independent Journal, it wasn’t the sheriff who stopped his sons. It was the local police.
Sheriff Doyle blasted the governor for his remarks. He called them “outrageous” in light of the violence that has ensued after the George Floyd killing.
Doyle said that the governor’s chief of staff called him over the weekend to apologize.
“I have to say,” Doyle told the Independent Journal, “that it’s remarkable that the chief of staff would reach out to me and apologize. I’ll get over this, but I just feel for the men and women in this organization that work hard. The damage has already been done. There are going to be people who think that sheriff’s deputies are racist.”