In case you missed it over the weekend, a maniac named Robert Williams attempted not one, but two assassinations of New York police officers in under twelve hours, injuring several of them. The second attack actually took place right inside a police station. Thankfully, none of the officers were killed and after the brazen attack at the station, the suspect was quickly apprehended. As one might expect, after you shoot up a bunch of cops and then another bunch of cops gets hold of you, the whole “apprehension” process can get a little bumpy. That’s particularly true when you’re still stupidly resisting arrest, as Williams was. If you click through and look at the picture of Williams in the hospital at the New York Post, you can see that he’s a bit worse for wear.
The fact that the alleged (I suppose we still technically have to say alleged) shooter is under wraps is the good news. But the bad news is that people are still going after the police in New York City. Who is to blame for that? Well, at least according to the NYPD Sergeants Union, it’s Mayor Bill de Blasio. They feel so strongly about this that they took to Twitter to “declare war” on Hizzoner and tell him not to bother visiting them in the hospital.
The NYPD’s Sergeants Benevolent Association on Sunday said its members are declaring “war” on Mayor Bill de Blasio after a gunman tried to assassinate cops in two incidents over less than 12 hours.
“Mayor DeBlasio, the members of the NYPD are declaring war on you!” the union tweeted. “We do not respect you, DO NOT visit us in hospitals.”
“You sold the NYPD to the vile creatures, the 1% who hate cops but vote for you,” the union continued.
The SBA told the mayor that “NYPD cops have been assassinated because of you,” before adding: “This isn’t over, Game on!”
Mayor DeBlasio, the members of the NYPD are declaring war on you! We do not respect you, DO NOT visit us in hospitals. You sold the NYPD to the vile creatures, the 1% who hate cops but vote for you. NYPD cops have been assassinated because of you. This isn’t over, Game on! https://t.co/XyruPraM9T
— SBA (@SBANYPD) February 9, 2020
Tempers were obviously flaring in the heat of the moment, and understandably so. When a bunch of cops get shot, especially right in their own station, the police are obviously going to be on edge. I’ll even go so far as to say that the Mayor’s tweet they were responding to really wasn’t offensive and offered praise and support for the NYPD. He correctly described the attacks as “a premeditated assassination attempt against New York’s Finest.”
Unfortunately, that’s not always the attitude de Blasio takes toward the city’s men and women in uniform. There’s little doubt that the Mayor has too often promoted an air of distrust toward the police department and failed to have their backs at critical times. This has led to an increase in incidents where people have been harassing the cops out on the streets, dumping water on them, and in at least one instance, physically assaulting them in broad daylight. (By the way… that guy was immediately released without bail by a judge thanks to the criminal justice “reform” laws the Mayor has championed.)
Is it any wonder that relations have deteriorated between the police officers’ unions and City Hall? As you may recall, back in 2017, hundreds of officers turned their backs on de Blasio when he came to speak at the funeral of a police officer who was slain in the line of duty. Other instances of friction abound.
With all that in mind, one supportive tweet after multiple officers are fired upon in the line of duty isn’t going to suddenly put the past behind you. There’s a relatively straightforward way that this rift could be healed, even if it takes some time. The Mayor could focus his energy on giving the police the resources they need, stop supporting laws that undermine them, making their jobs harder, and stop blaming them and taking the side of criminals whenever a crisis comes up. Both Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg had pretty solid relationships with the police during their time in office. It’s not impossible to do.
In the meantime, the Mayor could change his tune a bit and let the criminals of New York City know that there will be serious consequences for their actions. And when they extend their lawlessness to direct attacks on the NYPD they’ll be made to wish they’d never done it. If Bill de Blasio can manage even that much of an effort, he might not be on the receiving end of the ire of the police unions quite so often.