Are the police given short shrift?

Brianna Taylor is dead today because her ex-boyfriend was a drug dealer, who fired the first shot at a cop.  I try not to be gung-ho for either side, but if you have a gun, your home is raided, and you fire the first shot at a police officer, someone will die.  The NRA should realize this, but they have an agenda of death.  (If you are not an American, you’ll see, however inane, there are sides in this.)

Here, tragically, Brianna was the one who took the bullet.  Who is at fault?  Why not blame the National Rifle Association for putting guns in the hands of untrained civilians, and then her boyfriend, who took a pot shot at law enforcement.

In the interests of anti-racism, but not in the interests of justice, America will be going after the cops involved.  Every news outlet, including National Public Radio (NPR) who takes great pride in their lack of bias, does not report the entire story.  It is portrayed in the media, as a feel-good racial tolerance exercise.  Nail a few cops; and Blacks are happy, liberals are happy, even conservatives are, because they only see a part of the story.

(The NRA should be more appropriately named, the National Assault-Rifle Association.  They are just a bunch of gun-crazies who get off showing people they have the capability to murder at will, or by the score.  Maybe the NRA should not feel so bad: Our revered slave-owning founding fathers penned the firearm-happy, and disastrous, Second Amendment.  America is the only nation — ever — that made a market for Smith and Wesson in their federal Constitution.)  8/25/22.

I’ll get to my lighthearted “podcast” my childhood friend who became a NYPD officer, but first let me just say a few words in defense of the police.  I know, I may not sound the type, but there may be a time when you need someone with a gun to protect you, and you should have at least some gratitude that authorized, and trained, people with guns do exist.

You may say that they are overpaid, or that they have plenty of downtime.  Well, their pay is determined by their union representatives in negotiation with municipalities.  If they have too much downtime, then they are just over-staffed, and would need to tighten the budget belt.

Another common complaint about the police, is that they are blatant racists.  This may or may not be true in the South, or not so much true in the New South.  I did research, and in high-profile, national cases, police incompetence was much more in evidence, than racism.

Then many will say, “What about George Floyd and Derek Chauvin?”  To wit, Chauvin worked with an African American in his squad of four.  I fail to see how he can be a racist, given that he works with a Black guy every day.

Mug shots of Chauvin co-workers.

These are two coworkers of Derek Chauvin, the Minnesota police officer convicted of murdering George Floyd.  The one on the left is Tou Thao.  He is Asian-American.  The one on the right is J. Alexander Kueng, who is African-American.  Chauvin worked with both, and in fact, trained the one on the right.  Chauvin may be grossly incompetent, he may be cruel, or he may be a combination of the two, but can you really say that he is a racist?  8/06/22.

This is a table I made of possible racist police confrontations.  They’re mostly incompetence in dealing with untreated drug addiction, and untreated mental illness.  Chauvin couldn’t bring someone with a history of drug abuse to a jail cell to dry out?  Doing my research, it was apparent that there was much more incompetent police work, than any racism.

Brianna Taylor died in the crossfire when her drug addict boyfriend fired the first shot at a police officer.  That is a sure fire way to get someone killed, fire a shot at a cop, the first shot.

Anyone armed as most are here, are effectively armed and dangerous, in the eyes of the public, and the law.  Take away the gun, and they pose no threat.  No guns, no gun problems, and nothing can be tinged as racism in stopping those with guns.

The NRA is really the impetus behind these deaths.  Their avowed mission is for everyone to own a gun.  Well, once this is so, then the gun owners just use them on each other.

There are NRA cops who believe a well-armed militia fights crime, but they are just as wrong as the gun lobby.  Armed bystanders firing back at mass murderers do not take the place of cops, which do not take the place of an unarmed public.  Guns in the hands of the public do not fight crime, most often they aide and abet it.

Police officers who recognize that gun proliferation is a major cause of problems they see on patrol, know the NRA doesn’t solve anything by legitimizing guns.  Yet, this uniquely American problem is courtesy of our founding fathers, who were slave-owners, and who desperately needed to quell any slave rebellions.  They did this with firearms, which were outrageously endorsed in the U.S. Constitution with the Second Amendment (2A).

Repeal 2A, and our quality of life improves demonstrably.  Americans do not live in fear anymore.  High profile gun-control advocates such as Julianne Moore never, ever push for the repeal of 2A.  She, and her celebrity ilk, won’t for a second, push for the repeal of 2A.

They look at it as the impossible dream, when it isn’t.  A 2A repeal is only 67% to propose the repeal, and 75% to vote on correcting the tragedy-spawning blunder of our slave-owning founding fathers forever.  Assault rifle ban polls get similar percentages.  7/25/22.

Are cops predators of African Americans?  No.  If anything, think Keystone Cops, not KKK.

The DeadName of Officer Race of Officer responsible for the killing Was the dead armed?Was the dead Tasered?Was the dead a danger to public safety?Was the dead intoxicated?
Breonna TaylorJonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison & Myles CosgroveAll WhiteNo, her boyfriend nearby was.NoBreonna wasn’t, but Walker, her boyfriend was.  He shot first, after officers broke in.Taylor knew a drug dealer, Jamarcus Glover, and this is who officers meant to arrest
George FloydDerek Chauvin White, other backup officers were Black, Asian & WhiteNoNoThought to have passed a counterfeit $20 bill (cashiers don’t check for watermarks in MN?)Yes, doesn’t dry out or detox in lockup?
Eric GarnerKizzy Adoni, female supervising officer of arrestBlackNo No.  On death certificate, caused listed as a “homicide.”6ft. 3in. 350 lbs.; seen as a major, yet non-violent, nuisance by police; arrested more than 30 times since 1980. No, application of choke hold was excessive force by police, but supervising officer was Black, and choke typically not deadly like a gun
Casey GoodsonJason MeadeProbably White (not disclosed)Yes, had a concealed-carry permit, and “was legally armed”NoA witness reported that Goodson was told to drop his gun, and he didn’t, causing Meade to shoot him Goodson looks mentally ill in photos, why did he need, and how could he get, a gun?
Anthony Lamar SmithJason StockleyWhiteYesNo Involved in a high-speed chase after suspected drug deal, kept a gun No, but served prison time for dealing heroin
Terence CrutcherBetty Shelby White Wouldn’t show hands Yes Left car running in middle of a busy roadHis sister: “he had an ongoing drug problem”
Philando CastileJeronimo Yanez Hispanic Yes, why he was killed (NRA accountable) No 52 minor traffic violations, carrying weaponSmoking weed with 5-year-old in car
Samuel DuBoseRay Tensing White, Tensing was wearing a Confederate flag t-shirt beneath his police uniform at the time of shooting No No License had been revoked Carrying pot, to University of Cincinnati rent-a-cops, deadly force is not a problem.
Sandra BlandBrian Encinia Hispanic No She was threatened with one, but not tasered. Did she have a chip on her shoulder against cops?  That’s the common contention by police in these cases. She didn’t know how a traffic stop escalated this far, hung herself in jail
Freddie Gray Six 3 Blacks, 3 Whites Switchblade No Fleeing unprovoked, and switchblade, neck broken by police Drug offenses, but drugs not present here
Walter L. ScottMichael SlagerWhiteUncertain if Scott had taken the officer’s Taser YesFled being arrested, may have taken Taser Cocaine & alcohol present at autopsy
Akai GurleyPeter Liang Chinese No No 24 prior, unrelated arrests, yet accidental shooting claimed by defense of rookie officer Not a drug offense, just a stairwell patrol in the projects
Laquan McDonaldJason Van Dyke White Knife with 3" blade used to cut patrol car's tire Dyke almost shot Laquan on sight to backup cop’s disbelief Suspect known to have mental health issues; Dyke had 20+ violations of police policy on his record though; Chicago Police Dept. often cited for mistreating minorities Had PCP in bloodstream (still, how unbiased are the State’s reports, Angel Dust still sold?)
Michael BrownDarren Wilson White 6'4", 292 pounds, he was extremely agitated Reached for taser, then for Wilson’s gun Told to stop 10x, hit Ofc. Wilson in the face Had THC in bloodstream

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NYPD Childhood-Friend Podcast Transcript

I caught up with a friend from the old neighborhood, who became an NYPD Lieutenant c. 2004, he might have made Captain by now...

I will use an alias, N.E., okay, never mind, Nicholas Entenmann.  Entenmann, you know, like the donut, but this is his real name.  Nicky the Donut?  Okay, not close to his real name, but still, this conveys the popular idea of a police officer — scarfing down donuts as salve for a populace gone bonkers.

Anyhow, I asked him to appear on my fledgling podcast, I sent him a list of topics, and he came to my studios already prepared.  He ran the show, and had plenty to offer on his life inside a blue-and-white (no, not a blueberry-jam filled, powdered-sugar-dusted crueller):

“Geez, this is a great opportunity to speak to the public about our work as officers of the law, or the peace.  I say of the peace, some say, of the law.  Does it make a difference, not quite sure on that count.  Okay, the average police officer: We are nice guys.  Okay, but we can get a bit hardened.

“I’ll offer this: Say we get a call for domestic disturbance — not my fave.  The husband is in a rage over his “little lady” chatting up the grocery bagger.  This is just a for-instance.  Anyhow, they might be screaming at each other for an hour, and the neighbor decides they better call us, before someone gets killed.  So, no one gets killed.  The husband gets cited for anger management, on and on.

“Point being: After dozens, well, hundreds of these, one gets a little testy with scofflaws doing 50 in a 30, or 80 in a 30.  Am I going off topic?  Okay, now, you said in your questions, when do we call off a chase?  I never have.

“The problem is those imports: Ferraris, Maseratis, Lamborginis, like that.  I’ve heard a few cops say, blame Italy for unwinnable chases, blame Canada for anything else.  Inside joke, national RCMP rivalry.  RCMP?  Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  Okay, anyhow, squad cars generally have trouble keeping up with these imports, if they open it up, if they go full throttle.

“They can get above 120, and we generally never get up to 120, 100 miles per is tops, generally.  We take professional driving courses, we know how to handle a squad car at speed.  See, you put on the cherry tops, the red flashers, and they realize they gotta pull over.  The ones that don’t are wasted on coke, and they end up wrapped around trees.

“Now, to your question: Do we tap speeding, resisting arrests into the woods?  Never, we may not seem it to the public, but we are trying to save lives, not kill people.  I protect life.  I don’t care about race, who they love, the size of their bank account, no matter.  I need my saving the cat in the tree photo op.  I mean, I save any kind of life...  [Shortened for brevity]...

“Yeah, the communication equipment is top notch these days.  Oh, I’m sorry, you asked about decapitations?  Your cousin was older, and Boston EMT? — decaps that’s alot.  Taking in gun suspects is one thing, but...  That might mean pre-air bags, so he could see decaps, I never have.  I’ll ask around the precinct, or ask old-timers at the picnics, if you’d like.  Also, I’ll ask who has called off a chase, but please, we don’t bumper-tap into the woods.

“Oh, yes, the two-way radio is digitized, but not generally scrambled, or encrypted.  The bad guys never get location anyhow, they might get location of offense, and only that, not officer location.

“I work twelve-hour shifts, generally three a week; some officers like five eight-hours-long.  I’m sorry, I’m not letting you get a word in edgewise, no one ever hears what it’s like out there, I’m thankful for the opportunity.

“Now, food, who doesn’t like donuts?  Honestly, donuts are great.  Geez, raspberry filling, or apple, wow, I am there.  At the end of a twelve hour, why not, well — Krispy Creme is no more up North, but how ’bout the old standby, DD.  I’m sorry, if you’re not New York, DD is Dunkin Donuts.  Can I plug donuts?...”

Well, my friend from the old neighborhood, Nicky the Donut, okay, Nicholas Entenmann, continued to regale me with many arrests from his storied career of preventing people from killing one another, or themselves, and stuff like that.  Eventually, I had to tell him, I do not work overnights, and I have to get some shuteye.  Anyhow, happy endings for all concerned, yes?

[Pigheaded: Get OL for knowing about radios.  Check in on him, he’s sick.]

My childhood friend lived across the street from the greatest, A-M.  I am sure they got along, A-M was always a good girl, the best, truth be told.  N.E. was always a good guy, upstanding and polite, yet a guy’s guy.  I seemed to begin having a reputation as a ladies man (and a bit wild), if I may enjoy that conceit (“wild” is more a birth thing, than a conceit — I could go up and down each block and tell you which kid did and didn’t have the wild gene, irregardless of doper status).

I was assured by God herself, that living that close could not lead to anything.  It would be incestuous, it would be wrong, and A-M liked cops, as in protection, and as in neighbors, but not as in passionate, summer nights at Adventureland.  Not a possibility, the thin, blue line deal, a bit lonely, see?  A-M appreciated donuts, but was not a donut lover.  There, I said it...

I remember that N.E. was unflappable, high school world meant little to him, he liked the action of answering calls as a volunteer fireman.  I kind of got the sense that he was thinking: You have no idea how boring high school is, until you douse house fires.

He just seemed generally bored most of the time — hence, future police work — no more boredom.  I cannot say if he qualified as genuine adrenaline junkie: coffee, no decaf, and Saturday night speeding chases.

I don’t know if becoming a fireman figured into his thinking, but I think his Dad may have been a police officer.  Either that, or his Dad was an electrician (really?)...

He, and another guy from my neighborhood that I also knew — we played softball at nearby Hatch’s Field — both worked as volunteer firemen.  Each of them had first responder scanners, or police scanners.  I bought one later, just out of general interest.  Anyhow, the guy I knew that was several houses further away from A-M and N.E., was T-boned going to a call, and died.

This was the tragedy of our graduating year, it was heartbreaking.  There was a bumper sticker offered at the school as admonition: “Give Firefighters a Brake...”  Get it?  Not “break,” but “brake...”

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