Tuesday, February 22, 2005

More Tension...

Check out this story from Mercury News

LOS ANGELES - The killing of a 13-year-old boy by police in South Los Angeles has exposed unresolved tension between the black community and police in a city scarred twice in the last 40 years by riots. The shooting of Devin Brown at the end of a pre-dawn car chase on Feb. 6 triggered immediate outcry. Quickly, the word "riot" was in the air - in reaction on the street and from officials wondering if public anger would send the nation's second-largest city spiraling into a repeat of the violence of 1965 and 1992.

Amid candles, flowers and balloons placed at the scene was a homemade sign that called the Los Angeles Police Department a "cancer" to the community. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, issued a statement saying her immediate reaction was, "Once again, the police in our community acts as judge, jury and executioner." Mayor James Hahn pushed Police Chief William Bratton to finish a revision of a moving-vehicle shooting policy begun a year ago, then got the city Police Commission to immediately approve it. Bratton also released preliminary investigative details to counter what he termed misinformation that was being deliberately spread.


"Some of us have come to the conclusion that it's not about whether the right procedure was used or following policy," Waters said. "It's about a mind-set inside the Police Department that causes officers to shoot first and ask questions later." The revised shooting policy bans firing at a vehicle unless something other than the vehicle is a threat. The mayor said it is important because it will give guidance to police and help to change their mind-set.

"An incident like the shooting of Devin Brown causes a lot of anguish. ... It's a tragedy," Hahn said. "But it doesn't negate all the other good things that have been happening. The department really has been working to try to improve community relations." The "over-the-top" criticism of the Police Department by some black leaders has mischaracterized the police force and current racial relations in the city, Hicks said. A similar view was offered by Fernando J. Guerra, director of the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University. "Every single day in Los Angeles there are hundreds of thousands of inter-ethnic contacts and the vast majority is either positive, constructive or neutral," Guerra said. "Only a very small part of it, maybe 1 or 2 percent, is conflictual and gets out of hand. We allow that 1 or 2 percent to define us instead of the other."

This goes back to what I talked about yesterday. This "Blame Cops First" attitude is seriously unproductive and unnecessary. Yes, it's hard when a child dies, but let us not forget that this child stole a car and fled the cops only to later attempt to back over them. Also, you can hardly say a 13-year-old didn't know any better. The kid was a criminal and he was forced to accept the consequences of his behavior. Did you know that I have never stolen a car and tried to run over cops and not once have any cops ever shot at me! We can debate until next Christmas about whether or not police officers should be able to shoot at someone trying to run them over, but the fact remains that if you don't attempt to run them over, you have a 99.99% chance of not getting shot at! Learning is fun!

Anyways, the only cancer in the community is Ms. Waters. She condemns police for doing their jobs and plays up racial tensions in order to stay in power. She profits from community unrest. If you want to find black leader who will fight for the real interests of black people, look no further than Bill Cosby. He's been out there recently trying to improve the community by edifying it from the inside instead of blaming everyone else in the world. If people would elect more Cosbys and less Waters, I think you would see the black community florish and prosper. And despite what Ms. Waters would have you believe, this upper middle class Caucasian would love to see that.


Blogger leyva1313 said...

look my mother was in law-enforcement for from age 25 to 42, so i love the police as much if not more then most. but put that a side. no matter what you do, when you put some people in power and give them a gun and put them in a combat zone; there will be killings that are just and unjust! and when you kill some one in an unjust killing you should not be able to hide behind anything!

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