22 December 2014

I Finally Have Some Meaningful Thoughts About the Police Shootings in New York this Saturday

My first thought is that the NRA is a much bigger threat to the safety of police officers than peaceful protesters, civilian review boards, or criticism:
The last year when Ismaaiyl Brinsley—the man who killed two New York City cops on Saturday—should have been able to buy or carry a gun was 2008, when he was convicted of felony shoplifting, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. In 2011, he pleaded guilty to more felonies after he shot a woman's car with a stolen handgun. Over his life, he had 19 arrests in Ohio and Georgia.

As a felon, Brinsley was barred under federal law from buying a gun. Had he undergone a background check, he would have failed it and authorities could be notified. Yet the National Rifle Association argues that bad guys will get their hands on guns regardless of the law. The lobby points to violence in states with strong gun laws as evidence of gun control's ineffectiveness.

In fact, it's weak gun laws that enable felons, domestic abusers, and the mentally ill to arm themselves. Whereas licensed gun sellers must conduct background checks, unlicensed secondary market sellers face no such requirement in more laissez-faire states.
This is a direct result of the gun show loopholes and other similar exceptions foisted upon us by the ammosexual lobby.

The second thought is that the advocates for police in general, and the PBA in New York City in particular, are demanding that criticism and accountability for the police be non-existent:
I covered New York politics for 15 years, and I saw some awfully tense moments between the police and Democratic politicians. But there has never been anything remotely like the war the cops are waging right now against Mayor Bill de Blasio for the thought crime of saying something that was completely unremarkable and so obviously true that in other contexts we don’t even bat an eye when someone says it. And for that, the mayor has blood on his hands, as Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association head Pat Lynch said Saturday evening after the hideous assassinations of two NYPD officers?

Let’s rewind the tape here. On Dec. 3, in the wake of the Staten Island grand jury’s refusal to indict in the case of the police homicide of Eric Garner, de Blasio gave a press conference at a Staten Island church. He spoke of the need to heal and so on, the usual politician’s rhetoric, and then he uttered these words:
This is profoundly personal for me. I was at the White House the other day, and the president of the United States turned to me, and he met Dante a few months ago, and he said that Dante reminded him of what he looked like as a teenager. And he said, I know you see this crisis through a very personal lens. I said to him I did. Because Chirlane and I have had to talk to Dante for years, about the dangers he may face. A good young man, a law-abiding young man, who would never think to do anything wrong, and yet, because of a history that still hangs over us, the dangers he may face—we’ve had to literally train him, as families have all over this city for decades, in how to take special care in any encounter he has with the police officers who are there to protect him.
Dante de Blasio, as you surely know, is a mixed-race young man of 16 who looks black and sports a large, ’70s-style afro. Does anyone seriously think that his father should not have told him what he did? Come on. We all know the odds (actually, we don’t, more on which later). We hear every prominent black man in America who has a son and who decides to talk about this publicly—football players and actors and others—say exactly the same thing. We’ve heard it hundreds of times. Are these men lying? Are they paranoid weirdos? Of course they aren’t. They are fathers, describing to the rest of us what I thought was a widely acknowledged reality.
I understand that any management-labor dialogue is necessarily fraught, but this is literally a prescription for a police state, and Pat Lynch should be condemned.

What's more, this attitude is likely to make police officers less safe.


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