As politicians across the land have rushed to embrace the Social Justice Warrior sentiments embodied in the Black Live Matter movement, many suggestions have been offered as to how we should deal with tensions between law enforcement and the communities they serve and protect. One of the more popular ideas offered has been to get officers more in touch with their communities and build trust between them. So how has that been working out thus far?
At least in New York City – the site of some high profile police shootings and other lethal encounters – it doesn’t seem to be helping the outlook among the cops. A new survey of the members of the police union indicates that morale has “hit rock bottom” and there aren’t many signs of improvement on the horizon. (New York Daily News)
NYPD morale is at rock bottom and the dangers officers face are greater despite an influx of new cops and an increase in technology, according to a police union survey.
The Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association online membership poll found that 87% of police officers believe the city is “less safe” since Mayor de Blasio took over two years ago.
A stunning 96% of officers who responded said they feel the relationship between the NYPD and the public has worsened in recent years, with 70% saying it has “greatly worsened,” according to the poll handled by McLaughlin & Associates.
Because I get the chance to regularly talk to a few of the cops from the Metro area, I’ve been raising this issue for some time now. Democrats and SJW advocates have long tried to make this out as some sort of political football and a union vs City Hall beef, but the problems facing the rank and file officers on the force are real. The cops are very unhappy with de Blasio and it has nothing to do with whether he has an R or a D after his name. There have been much better periods of harmony on the police union front under Mayors of both parties. This is something new and very destructive.
In response to the news of this survey, Bill de Blasio chose to criticize the messengers rather than addressing the problem. He points to a 5.8% drop in the crime rate and recent moves to hire 1,300 news cops, along with increased issuance of bulletproof vests and 21st century communications equipment. Unfortunately, none of that is dealing with the core problem. The crime rate is down because the cops are still doing their jobs, even under harsher conditions on the ground. The new equipment is great, but it’s also unrelated to disharmony among the ranks. The problem isn’t the cops… it’s the lack of support they get from City Hall and the state government.
For just one example of this, let’s look at the proposal put forth by the Governor and supported by the mayor which is supposed to address the complaints of the SJW. (Daily News)
Under Cuomo’s proposal, which was outlined in his January State of the State Address, the special counsel would review police-involved killings that are not presented to a grand jury or that fail to produce an indictment.
The counsel could then recommend to the governor the appointment of a special prosecutor.
This is the disconnect we’re running into. The vast, vast majority of all deadly force encounters with police are justified beyond reasonable question. The officers are always taken off the streets after it happens, both for administrative review in the rare cases of malice and to make sure they get any needed counseling following a traumatic event. And each case is thoroughly reviewed for possible prosecution, now more than ever with all the media scrutiny. But that’s not good enough for the “progressive” forces on the streets and in City Hall. They want special treatment for cops, and not of the favorable kind. Ironically, the Mayor and the Governor still caught flack from protesters saying even that proposal wasn’t enough.
Meanwhile the cops are left on the outside looking in, wondering who is going to speak up for all the officers who put their lives on the line each day for an increasingly ungrateful community. Is it any wonder that morale is down?