Patrick Lynch, head of the New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association is mistaken is his opinion of Mayor Bill de Blasio but he wasn’t mistaken in his characterization of accountability.
“There’s blood on many hands.”
Patrick Lynch – Head of New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association
Someone should remind Mr. Lynch that it’s the reason for the protests coming out of the black communities and elsewhere; a perceived lack of accountability required from local police.
It’s understandable his emotional reaction to the deaths of the two New York patrolmen. It’s only natural to lash out in all directions. But after the dust settles and the two men are buried, I would hope that he realizes his mistakes and corrects them.
Looking at his picture, surrounded by officers who’ve just lost one of their own to tragic circumstances, I’m more concerned by what I don’t see and what I don’t hear.
What I don’t see are any “other-than-white” faces in the crowd of officers gathered to show their solidarity. That’s not to say that minority police officers are not angry at the loss of one of their own but I can’t help but wonder why their numbers aren’t represented better when a camera shows any gathering of New York’s patrolmen, under the current circumstances.
And what I don’t hear from him is anything concerning restraint and good judgment.
In his condemnation of Mayor de Blasio’s empathy with the black community, Lynch shows how disconnected he and others like him are with the communities they supposedly serve. And that’s the true shame because if we could just get him and others to make that connection, we’d cease having conversations such as this.
If he was connected then he’d know that every father with a son of color-a child of color, in fact-has to have “the conversation” with his children and instruct them how to interact with the police. It’s something of a rite of passage for African-Americans and other minorities.
If he was connected, he would further recognize that he’s crossed a line; one that seeks to advocate for the safety of his union brothers on the one hand and one that seeks to set a tone of reconciliation and public safety, as a veritable leader of the police force, on the other. Right now, I hear one but I don’t hear the other.
In fact, what I hear from police departments across the nation is a collective “Call to Arms”, as they place themselves on high alert in expectations of an imminent attack. They did this despite the fact that Ismaaiyl Brinsley is dead, by his own hand and there’s no evidence that he acted with another. They ignore the fact that his own mother reported his threats against the police; a sign of the collaborative relationship police are supposedly seeking with the black community.
That they choose to ignore the positives while steadily and readily reinforcing the negatives makes me wonder what their true goals are in dealing with African-Americans.
One ear hears the alert as the objective preparations of a disciplined, well-oiled machine seeking to take steps necessary to calm the fears of the public but the other ear hears it as the gleeful, anticipatory machinations of a para-military force bent on violent, social change.
It’s like I said, I hear one thing but I don’t hear another. What do you hear?