The Federal government rolled out the weed and seed program in the early 1990s in response to a new wave of urban uprisings. It placed social services under police control, so that cops could first “weed,” (i.e. remove undesirable elements) and then “seed” by distributing resources, following a classic model of counter-insurgency. Two decades were required for Weed and Seed to collapse, under pressure due to its own dysfunction, as well as concerted opposition by affected communities. Weed and Seed remains a model for similar counter-insurgency efforts, though, so Anne Gray Fischer and Max Felker-Kantor’s analysis on this week’s Kite Line is invaluable for organizers and community members affected by future programs.

Click Max Felker-Kantor’s name in the tags below for more of his episodes on police and Los Angeles.