America has faced massive demonstrations and riots in the wake of the incomprehensible death of George Floyd allegedly Minnesota Police Officer Derek Chauvin and other members of that city’s police department.
No one has attempted to defend Chauvin’s actions.
Yet the Radical Left and the mainstream media have seized on Floyd’s death to discredit law enforcement and spurred high-profile leaders of the Democratic Party, to “Defund the police” and erase the “Thin Blue Line.”
In point of fact, the Minneapolis City Council has voted to completely defund and dismantle that city’s beleaguered police department. Final action on this insane proposal is pending.
In New York City, the NYPD’s highly effective Anti-Crime Units have been disbanded and Mayor de Blasio has stated he will reduce the NYPD funding by one billion dollars even as, on June 22, 2020 NBC News reported, Weekly NYC Shootings Soar 358% Over Last Year, Data Shows.
Many years ago, as an INS agent, I worked closely with the NYPD and its Anti-Crime Units and can personally attest to how effective that unit was.
Incredibly, the same Democrats who attacked President Trump when he sought to defund “Sanctuary Cities” for not cooperating with ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) arguing that defunding police would cost innocent people their lives are now, themselves, seeking to defund police departments.
The most dangerous four word statement a law enforcement officer can make is, “You are under arrest.” No one knows how a suspect may react to being taken into custody. I speak from my 30 yers of experience with the former INS. While many individuals may go quietly others may react with the fight or flight response.
On June 25, 2020 House Democrats passed a bill to reform police that included a provision that would strip police officers of protection against being personally sued for their actions.
Currently law enforcement officers may be sued if it can be demonstrated that they acted outside of their scope of authority. This bill would leave law enforcement officers personally vulnerable under all circumstances.
Should such a bill become law, law enforcement officers would have to be foolish to arrest anyone or take any official action.
There is a Yiddish expression that “When the fish goes bad it smells from the head.” If any group should be vulnerable to lawsuits, it should be the politicians who create dangerous sanctuary policies as I noted in my article, Politicians Must Face Consequences For Crimes They Enable.
The vast majority of law enforcement officers are professional and fair and decent guardians of peace and safety. The actions of a very small minority of bad cops is being exploited by the Radical Left to attack law enforcement in general.
As unhinged as the demand to defund police is, we must remember that the Democrats launched their first attack on law enforcement by vilifying our nation’s immigration laws and the federal agents who are responsible for enforcing those laws. In a very real sense, the Border Patrol and ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents were the “canaries in the coal mine.”
Under so-called “Sanctuary” policies alien criminals have been shielded from detection by ICE and other federal agents who are charged with enforcing our nation’s immigration laws- often with catastrophic deadly consequences.
Consider my recent article, New York State Blocks ICE and Border Patrol Access to DMV Database in which I focused on additional dangerous policies engaged in by New York’s governor Cuomo to undermine immigration law enforcement.
Many have called for finding ways to de-escalate the encounters between police and the public. Certainly this is a worthwhile objective. However, when the media and politicians warn black men that police officers are seeking to kill them, the false fear that this creates may well cause people to not comply with law enforcement causing greater likelihood that interactions between the police and the public may end badly.
Calls for “de-militarizing police” may be well-intentioned but are wrong-headed. Certainly police officers should not routinely patrol neighborhoods with kevlar helmets and submachine guns- but heavy weapons and other tactical resources need to be maintained in reserve to be readily available for situations involving terrorists or other heavily armed criminals.
The calls for defunding police have been predicted on a relatively few situations involving a tiny percentage of our valiant police officers. Let me be clear- the loss of even one life is a tragedy.
However, if the sole justification for defunding police and vilifying the hundreds of thousands of men and women who form the “thin blue line” and save innumerable lives each year, is because an extremely small number of people have lost their lives to police actions, then by that fatally flawed reasoning, perhaps hospitals should be defunded.
Consider that on February 22, 2018 CNBC posted an important report, The third-leading cause of death in US most doctors don’t want you to know about.
That report began with these two bullet points:
A recent Johns Hopkins study claims more than 250,000 people in the U.S. die every year from medical errors. Other reports claim the numbers to be as high as 440,000.
Medical errors are the third-leading cause of death after heart disease and cancer.
Consider that when medical professionals err their patients may suffer grievous and life=altering injuries or die. The life and/or physical wellbeing of the medical professional who errs, however, is not on the line.
When law enforcement officers err, they may pay for their mistakes with their own lives or the lives of their colleagues.
There are no “do-overs!”
Of course I am not advocating for hospitals to be defunded- but certainly neither should police departments be defunded.
The majority of those who fall victim to violence, including young children are members of the minority communities, just as the majority of those who fall victim to the crimes and violence of transnational gangs are members of the various ethnic immigrant communities.
The Radical Left and their patrons in the Democratic Party don’t care about those innocent lives, they simply seek anarchy as a means of gaining political power.
If I had a wish list, I would love to see the development of additional effective non-lethal means of quickly subduing violent suspects during an arrest.
More training and additional resources for police- not fewer, could be effective.
Police departments should have to meet common training requirements to make certain that minimum common standards are met.
Critical elements contained in the evaluations of police officers should be reviewed. Police officers who seek to advance their careers see in their evaluations their “marching orders” that they must follow in order to get good evaluations. If, for example, quotas for arrests are established as critical elements, some police officers may act aggressively to make more arrests to satisfy this requirement.
Police departments should not be used to generate revenue for their jurisdictions. Revenue generated by the issuance of parking tickets and other such administrative actions can create hostility between police officers and the communities that they serve.
Police departments might benefit by enabling officers who “burn out” to take an early retirement with an appropriately reduced pension after five or more years. Many police officers suffer from PTSD. This is evidenced by the high number of police officers who commit suicide.
To this point, on January 2, 2020 ABC News reported: Record number of US police officers died by suicide in 2019, advocacy group says The figure rose to 228 from 172 in 2018.
Those who enlist in our armed forces are able to leave after a few years, having served our nation, so that they could then move on to other careers. Why not provide a similar option for police officers?
My list is not all-inclusive but could serve as “food for thought.”
However, the number one issue is clear- any politician who seeks to defund or undermine the police must be voted out of office. Elections must have consequences!