NYT vs NYPD

Confession: due to addictive levels of playing Half Life 2 on my vacation there’s less blog posts than there should be.  Don’t hate.  That said, I loved this NYT editorial about the reprehensible response of many in the NYPD to their civilian leadership:

Mr. de Blasio isn’t going to say it, but somebody has to: With these acts of passive-aggressive contempt and self-pity, many New York police officers, led by their union, are squandering the department’s credibility, defacing its reputation, shredding its hard-earned respect. They have taken the most grave and solemn of civic moments — a funeral of a fallen colleague — and hijacked it for their own petty look-at-us gesture. In doing so, they also turned their backs on Mr. Ramos’s widow and her two young sons, and others in that grief-struck family…

The New York Police Department is going through a terrible time, and the assassinations of those officers only underscore the dreadful dangers that rank-and-file cops face every day. And, in truth, there is some thanklessness to being a cop. Officers often feel beleaguered, jerked around by supervisors and politicians, obligated to follow rules and policies that can be misguided, held responsible for their mistakes in ways that the public is not, exposed to frequent ridicule and hostility from the people they are sworn to serve. It has always been that way with cops.

But none of those grievances can justify the snarling sense of victimhood that seems to be motivating the anti-de Blasio campaign — the belief that the department is never wrong, that it never needs redirection or reform, only reverence. [emphases mine]

Cops are human– just like the rest of us.  No matter how hard it may be too be a cop, that does not excuse an ideology that suggests that cops can never do wrong and police organizations are never in need of reform.  Part of serving and protecting the public means actual accountability for mistakes, something it seems we’ve seen too little of.  And I so hate the false dichotomy that says if you want police officers and police departments to be better, you are somehow against police.  Then again, it’s probably coming from the same “America, love it or leave it crowd.”  Let’s just make things better, damnit, and not pretend that’s an “attack” on whatever it is we are trying to improve.

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