Falling for the Okey Doke
REUTERS/Eric Thayer (UNITED STATES)
Stanley Crouch gets it wrong again.
Listen to cop critics - not racial rabble-rousers
Only a willfully blind person could argue that the police of this city have not made New York a much better place to live over the last decade. Crime and murder have fallen precipitously. People live safer lives and feel much freer of the urban oppression that is crime. And those who form the blue line of men and women standing between the public and the predators we call lawbreakers are the ones responsible.
Addressing policy instead of rabble-rousing is something we never expect from the agitators. After all, that would demand thought as opposed to repeated racial cliches.
Fortunately, some are still looking for honest answers. Richard Green is a man I met while working on a task force that Rudy Giuliani put together to investigate the relationship of the NYPD to the community in the wake of the Abner Louima assault in a Brooklyn police station.
Green is a thoughtful community activist from Brooklyn. For over 20 years, he has worked with community kids as well as police. He proposes that the department set aside its semiautomatic weapons and return to the six-shot .38 - because very few officers ever find themselves using a weapon in the line of duty.
But a former instructor at the Police Academy tells me that changing weapons will not make up for bad policing. And to him, the Sean Bell case reeks of poor police work. He says that an undercover cop is never supposed to challenge a suspect unless the officer is alone and has no choice. Otherwise, he is supposed to provide surveillance only and let the uniformed officers do the challenging, the arresting and, if necessary, the fighting.
Let me tell you about Richard Green and that "task force" Giuliani put together. Green relies on city money. He critizes the city, he loses his funding. So he was already bought and paid for when Giuliani perpretated that con game.
Yes, he suckered a few people into joining his task force, and they wrote a report. Then they gave the report to Giuliani.
Who promptly tossed it in a garbage can and ignored every recommendation. Proving that black people stupid enough to work with Giuliani got disrespected.
Crouch can blather on about racial agitators, but the reality is that when you act reasonably, they laugh in your face and spit on you. And Crouch doesn't realize to this day that is what happened to him.
What Crouch doesn't tell you is that most black and latino men live in fear of negative contact with the police. You not only have to worry about being robbed, but being abused by the cops, even if the city is safer.
Without racial "rabblerousers" nothing would ever change in this city. Because he advocated policy and Giuliani wiped his ass with it and smiled while he did it.
posted by Steve @ 4:32:00 PM