Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Blue Knights

It seems like every time I pick up a newspaper there is a story about a New York City cop who has been shot. Today's paper tells of police officer Thomas Richards, who was fired at and miraculously saved, when the ammunition clip he was carrying on his belt blocked the bullet. The assailants in these cases are always the same types: punks and drug dealers carrying illegal weapons who prey on their neighborhoods and the kids living there. The irony is that the people being protected by brave cops like officer Richards probably wouldn't lift a finger to help identify and capture the criminals living among them if they had the chance.  

It's not just New York City, but every urban area that has been taken over by the worst elements of our society. I'd like to believe that I'm not a racist; I have nothing but admiration for minorities who have struggled to overcome the prejudices against them to live productive lives. There is no denying, however, that too many violent crimes are committed by African-Americans and Latinos. Sadly, the victims of many of these crimes are decent people who themselves are minorities and who have the misfortune to live among these thugs. Murder is the leading cause of death among young black males. Some people chalk criminal tendencies up to poverty, but not all poor people turn to crime. Many use education and hard work to pull themselves out of the misery that poverty creates. 

Cities like New York, Los Angeles, Detroit, St. Louis, Atlanta, Cleveland, and even our nation's capital, Washington, D.C., are beset by crime. Organized gangs roam the streets, armed and dangerous, knowing that well-meaning but idiotic liberal do-gooders have tied the hands of the local police to the point where any police officer involved in a shooting will probably get into more trouble than the punks who started it. I don't know how a cop can enter a known drug den looking for felons when he or she knows they will be second-guessed to death by review boards and Internal Affairs if they have to draw their weapons. How did we get to this ridiculous state of affairs?

One of the justifications for it is to cite the examples of bad cops who abused their powers to make questionable arrests. Does that happen...yes it does. I'm betting though that some cops just get frustrated watching punks they have put in jail plea bargain their time down to nothing, or walk altogether because of a faulty justice system. The next time they collar these punks, they plant some drugs or a gun on them to see if they can keep them in jail for a while. Is that right...certainly not, but neither is it right for a slick lawyer to intimidate witnesses and manipulate juries (who aren't always that bright to begin with) into putting career criminals back on the streets.

I wouldn't be NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly for the world. He is hounded in the press for harassing Muslims, when in fact he is just doing his job by surveiling those people who have attacked us in the past and will do so again if given the chance. Then he has to visit his officers in the hospital, who got hurt protecting all of us while being hamstrung by restrictive rules and the legions of second guessers who make their lives hell. Worst of all must be the visits to the families of officers killed in the line of duty to tell them their loved one won't be coming home. I applaud Commissioner Kelly and cops everywhere for keeping us safe at great risk to themselves.

If you get the chance, thank a police officer for the hard work they do. I can't imagine a more dangerous and thankless job.


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Joseph Del Broccolo said...

Amen brother!

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear for your loss Mr. Pantaleno! I just read the blog. Hope all is well and your family will be in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear for your loss Mr. Pantaleno! I just read the blog. Hope all is well and your family will be in my prayers.