Monday, January 5, 2015

No C.P.R. (Courtesy, Professionalism Or Respect)

If you've ever lived in New York City, and you know anything about New York City politics, you know that the NYPD is controlled by the PBA. Not the mayor, the police commissioner, or the governor. The NYPD is completely controlled by the Patrolemen's Benevolent Association, one of the most powerful unions in the country. The sole purpose of the PBA is to act as a protective shield for all New York City police officers, period. They are not particularly concerned with guilt, innocence, and even culpability. They are the "masterminds" behind things like the "48 hour rule", which was implemented so that police officers have more than enough time to make up a half way believable story after they commit an act of misconduct.

What the PBA says is gospel to its members. They are told what to think, and how to act, and who to vote for, and anyone who disagrees with them are their automatic enemies. With that being said I am not surprised by the fact that some officers have chosen to commit acts of blatant disrespect.

There was a time when most NYPD patrol cars had the intials C.P.R. on them. C.P.R. stands for courtesy, professionalism, and respect. It sounds good in theory, but now it is little more than an oxymoron, or a sick joke.

Police officers turned their backs on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Sunday during the funeral for Wenjan Lieu one of two NYPD officers killed in a Dec. 20 ambush, exposing the ongoing rift between the department and City Hall.

The officers were seen turning away from an outdoor screen showing de Blasio’s eulogy at the service in Brooklyn, defying a request by New York Police Commissioner William Bratton not to protest at the funeral.

“A hero’s funeral is about grieving, not grievance,” Bratton wrote in a memo toofficers on Friday, less than a week after officers turned their backs on de Blasio at the funeral of Rafael Ramos, the other NYPD slain officer. “I remind you that when you don the uniform of this department, you are bound by the tradition, honor, and decency that go with it.” Bratton said. But Bratton, like just about every other NYC police commissioner, has little or no control of the department in his charge.

While he made “no threats of discipline,” Bratton said he did not support the actions of those officers who “stole the valor, honor, and attention that rightfully belonged to the memory of detective Rafael Ramos’ life and sacrifice.”

Thousands of officers joined in Sunday’s protest.

Bratton said he believes the divide triggered by de Blasio’s response to the killing of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, by a white police officer, on Staten Island — will continue for the foreseeable future.

“I think it’s probably a rift that is going to go on for a while longer,” Bratton said. “They really do feel under attack.”

“As we start a new year, a year we’re entering with hearts that are doubly heavy,” de Blasio said in his remarks Sunday, “let us rededicate ourselves to those great New York traditions of mutual understanding and living in harmony. Let us move forward by strengthening the bonds that unite us, and let us work together to attain peace.”

The rift started with Mayor DeBlasio and the police department when he chose to aire on the side of caution as opposed to jumping to the defense of the department. It has been alleged that the mayors hesitance to come to the NYPD's defense is due in large part to the fact that his son is African-American.  

This is not the first time that the NYPD has been at odds with a mayor.

Former Mayors David Dinkins, Rudolph Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg all endured that animus, despite their wildly divergent ideologies and approach to governing. Just about any time a mayor tried to pay police less than they thought they deserved or impose a new form of oversight or accountability, the vitriol flew–and no clash between mayors and police was quite as bitter as what the city witnessed 22 years ago, when Mr. de Blasio’s old boss, Mr. Dinkins, failed to tame an actual police riot.

“He never supports us on anything,” one police officer complained to the New York Times about Mr. Dinkins, the city’s first and only black mayor. “A cop shoots someone with a gun who’s a drug dealer, and he goes and visits the family.”

On September 16, 1992, thousands of police officers stormed City Hall and stopped traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge to protest Mr. Dinkins’ eventually successful attempt to create an all-civilian Civilian Complaint Review Board, as well as express their general frustration toward his administration. Just as police union leaders and their backers view Mr. de Blasio’s desire to address the grievances of minorities who feel unfairly targeted by police as a thinly-disguised pretext to undermine law enforcement, they blamed Mr. Dinkins for undercutting police in an environment plagued with far more crime and unrest.

“The 300 uniformed officers who were supposed to control the crowd did little or nothing to stop the protesters from jumping barricades, tramping on automobiles, mobbing the steps of City Hall or taking over the bridge,” the Times reported. “In some cases, the on-duty officers encouraged the protesters.”

If I remember correctly, and this is pretty hard to forget, some officers were heard chanting "Nigger", in reference to Mayor Dinkins.

Ken Sunshine, Mr. Dinkins’ first chief of staff, said parallels could be drawn between that protest and the rage cop leaders feel toward Mr. de Blasio now. But he insisted that New York in 2014–now far safer and less white than it was two decades ago–would change how the dynamic is experienced this time.

The man who would unseat Mr. Dinkins in 1993, Republican Rudolph Giuliani, was the ringleader of the 1992 police protest. At the time Mr. de Blasio was a young, unknown aide to Mr. Dinkins, one witness to the dawn of what became a two-decade drought for Democrats at City Hall.

And now Mr. Giulianii, who was the worst mayor in New York City history due to his ambivalence toward anyone who was a minority, ihas emerged as a leading critic of Mr DeBlasio, blaming the mayor, like Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch and Sergeants Benevolent Association President Edward Mullins, for igniting the cop-hating atmosphere that led Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, to ambush and kill Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn on December 20.

Mr. Giuliani, however, didn’t enjoy a much warmer relationship with one of Mr. Lynch’s predecessors, Lou Matarazzo. When the Republican refused to give the PBA the raises they sought, union leaders assailed Mr. Gulliani as a cheapskate. The Republican mayor was the brunt of a “zeros for heroes” campaign, and knew that when he ran for president a decade later, the PBAwouldn't dare lend their endorsement.

The PBA always has and continues to maintain a polarizing culture of racism and disrespect.



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