New Blog Address

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Friday, May 09, 2008

Tensions at a Boiling Point

Excellent Daily News article about the current status of Police and community relations.

"You're out here riding around and you're involved in a shooting and the cops pull you over and you got your ass beat," Quinn said. "You know what? Let me tell you something, when I was growing up, I had my ass kicked by the cops and I deserved it."

John McGrody, a vice president of the Fraternal Order of Police, showed little concern for the welfare of the suspects beaten by Philadelphia police officers.

"We're generally not dealing with people returning from a Tupperware party or the library," McGrody said. "They committed a felony in the presence of police."

Police officers have the "most dangerous job" in the city, he said, and the public shouldn't judge too harshly.

"Everybody has not seen the whole tape," he said, "but what's clear is that three gun-toting felons were fleeing an active shooting scene. Police officers respond with the use of force in the same way it's dealt to us. We're grateful none of our police officers were hurt."

However, it should be noted that police did not find guns either on the suspects or in their vehicle.

And for every citizen who sides with Quinn and McGrody, there is someone who disagrees — strongly. Chad Dion Lassiter, a professor at University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Social Policy and Practice, called the actions of the officers seen on tape "savage-like behavior that has historical underpinnings."

Such brutality only deepens the distrust and dislike many in downtrodden communities hold for police, Lassiter said.

"This is why people, especially African-Americans, are distrusting of police officers," he said. "This conduct happens often; it's just not recorded. We don't need our cops becoming legalized gangsters."
As summer moves closer, here's hoping that Philly can recover from all this mess.

1 comment:

Dave said...

"Police officers respond with the use of force in the same way it's dealt to us."

Oh really? So if someone rapes a cop, one of Philadelphia's finest is going to step up to the plate and rape the perp as well? That's some interesting rule of law you guys have there in Philadelphia.