Chris Monahan, who heads the NYPD Captains Endowment Association, is usually more circumspect than the leaders of the sergeants’ and patrolmen’s unions, so it’s notable that he just wrote his members about the impossible dilemma they’ve been placed in during the current disorders.
His e-mail warned that if cops go “hands off” on looters and unruly protesters, “you will be assaulted by them.” But if they go “hands on,” then “you will be assaulted by our elected officials.”
In short, the politicians “do not have your back and will use you as a political pawn!”
He’s absolutely right. On the one hand, officials from the mayor on down don’t want mayhem. On the other hand, the politicians compete to lead the rush to blame cops if something goes wrong.
Officers and commanders were told to enforce a curfew — and then be flexible about it. By Saturday night, apparently, they were being told not to enforce it all. Then the mayor canceled the last night of it.
And when police do arrest someone, illegal protesters and even most looters are released as soon as they make it in front of a judge. Heck, the Manhattan DA’s Office on Saturday even declined to press charges against a man arrested for allegedly vandalizing St. Patrick’s Cathedral — the suspected getaway driver for two women who defaced the church with graffiti. (He may still get indicted, pending further, active investigation.)
Nearly all those charged with lawbreaking get to walk — even as multiple cops have been suspended or reassigned over charges they misbehaved (or failed to supervise properly) during the chaos.
Mayor Bill de Blasio hasn’t been the worst cop-basher over the past week. He noted, quite rightly, that police are operating in an environment where hundreds of them have been wounded — many because of direct and potentially deadly attacks.
But he’s getting worse. On Sunday, he had the gall to complain about police not wearing masks — when they’re in heavy gear, including helmets, because of the danger.
“It’s painful to people because it feels like [cops are] flouting the rules,” the mayor whinged. This, when even the most peaceful protesters have been flagrantly flouting the social-distancing rules and the whole “staying home saves lives” thing, not to mention those who gleefully defied the curfew — even after warnings that doing so enables the looters and violent anarchists.
And now de Blasio is rushing to appease the “Defund the Police” lunatics, vowing to cut the NYPD budget to fund youth programs, among other things. You can bet that’s just a taste of what’s coming.
Who will suffer most if you cut the budget of the NYPD? Poor neighborhoods where the crime rate will climb, as progressive politicians punish the very black and Hispanic residents whom they claim to want to help.
New York City is supposed to start reopening on Monday — with its commercial areas universally boarded up (often over broken store windows) and the boards covered with graffiti. And that’s not even the biggest roadblock to restoring normalcy.
No: The bigger problem is that the men and women of New York’s Finest, who work tirelessly to protect the public, are all distracted by the need to look over their shoulder for the next attack by a politician.
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