BY TONY BOUZA
A group of Federales is scheduled to assess the Minneapolis Police Department. It is tantamount to an archeological dig among the ruins.
With characteristic hubris I will offer an agenda. Welcome to Fredonia.
They will find an agency bloated with supervisors—but none making appearances at such atrocities as the Floyd case.
An indifference to public plight through such strategies as two-person patrols; four-day workweeks; absence of aggressive and constitutional police tactics like decoys; creation of useless appendages like horse patrols; creation of spin doctors called Public Information Officers (which are neither public nor informative); total indifference to the quality of 911 service, including how Blacks are treated; complete disregard of the need to control the meat-eaters—labeled “Thumpers”—and total neglect of such tools as internal affairs units.Rich, new meaning to featherbedding.
This august body of visitors will find an agency run by a police union whose main concern is the comfort and convenience of its members; a mayor who seems wholly uninterested in police issues; a chief who wants to get along with a union without calculating the consequences of ignoring that it is an adversarial relationship. They will find an agency that is neither transparent nor accountable nor responsive (literally and figuratively, given their dilatoriness in 911 responses).
In an episode embodying a crime response by four cops and involving a death, how is it possible there wasn’t a supervisor present?
Why wasn’t the heroic young woman who filmed the whole thing given a medal?
Why were brave onlookers calling for cessation of the cop’s murderous assault treated like enemies?
The leadership’s utter and pathetic failures bear a heavy, and continuing, cost.
The four cops were fired—two probably illegally since they had tenure. The humiliation of their restoration awaits. Some hapless arbitrator now shakes over the prospect of their restoration.
Looters, arsonists and other bums got away with it by floating among the mass of peaceful protesters. Contrast this with the vigorous follow-through and arrests in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
There’s more—lots more—but the limitations of space impose limits. Duh!
And there’s morale—it’s never been lower. Self-pitying bullshit. Nobody quits. Competition for jobs is keen.Pay and benefits are very high. And cops love what they do.
The Feds will find plenty to study and fallow ground for a harvest of reform, but forgive me for skepticism.
The Floyd case contained everything—crime, race, thumping, police cruelty, and on and on. The Justine Damond case did too, and there the police driver, clearly complicit, was never charged. No doubt, a debt to the union repaid.
The city could have secured a better outcome by understanding the cases, really caring and fighting. Trial, anyone?
Defunding is a chimera yet not a police departmentin America would suffer from a measured, analyzed reduction of 10 to 20% of its budget.
“Myself, when young, did eagerly visit doctor and saint, and heard great argument about it and yet evermore came out the same door wherein I went”— a Muslim poet made famous by a British eccentric.
So, welcome to Fredonia, or is it Ruritania?