WTF, 12/17: So they say this is Christmas time, eh?




So, they say this is Christmas time, eh? (Apologies to John Lennon). Tell me when’s the hate gonna stop? When do all people lay down their arms, turn them into plowshares, and, say “ENOUGH!”?

This week I’m talking about hate.. yeah, again… and, cops is still a topic of discussion, as are the fucking terrorists around the world, but, still… it ain’t all bad, and, we can’t let fear rule..


1) joe1On Friday (12/12), a form appeared on the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association (PBA… aka the cop union) website for cops who want to tell the NYC mayor and the NYC Council’s speaker that they are persona non grata at any future cop funerals.

The specific doc reads in part as follows… “As a New York City police officer, (I) request that Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito refrain from attending my funeral services.”

What this regards is the head of the PBA, Pat Lynch says that the mayor and the speaker refuse (the PBA’s word) to show respect and support to cops.

Pat Lynch
Pat Lynch

Ya see… DeBlasio, after the recent events that have surfaced around the country as far as cops being involved in the killing of unarmed black folks, told his son… who happens to be biracial and of a rather dark skin tone… to be wary around cops, if, they be approaching him.

And that sorta got some cops … PBA head cop Lynch for sure… kinda pissed off.

Now… I got some problems with Mayor DeBlasio… as a liberal it’s assumed I’m supposed to lean towards his way of thinking, but, ya know… afore I go further… There’s a problem with trying to fit peeps into nice little compartmentalized and labeled boxes… sometimes one size does not fit all… and… sometimes, just because I might lean with ya’ll one way, it don’t mean I lean with you always…  And that’s the way it is with this here mayor dude and me…

Now… back to the regularly scheduled rant…

DeBlasio…. sometimes… he comes off a bit overly aloof and sort out of touch, or step, with the realities of his job… being the mayor of all of NYC.

I mean his entire tilting at windmills as far as trying to eliminate the horse carriage rides in the Big Apple… he says it’s all about the animals and preventing animal cruelty, while there seems to be a preponderance of evidence that says the horses are well taken care of, and, in no danger of being abused if the horse carriage industry carries on…

And… the recent incidence of his not being in attendance at the memorial funeral for Latino politician Herman Badillo. It’s a known fact the dude is always late to stuff… which, to my way of thinking is an insult and sign of disrespect in and of itself. But, this time Mayor de Blasio didn’t even sweat it about being at Herman Badillo’s funeral… in fact, he was, according to various reports, too busy sweating it out at a gym.

See… the reports say De Blasio was working out at a YMCA in Brooklyn while other New York pols were paying their respects to Badillo… who just happened to be the first Puerto Rican-born congressman in the good old U S of A. And, the fact that he didn’t even find the time to call the widow… that’s disrespect in triplicate and not cool.

That’s just a couple of things… me and him don’t see eye to eye on…. I just mention them so ya’ll know I got issues with this here NYC mayor…

Okay… now… back to the real reason  I’m here to rant…

To recap… cops are pissed the mayor publicly said that he had warned his biracial 17-year-old son to tread carefully when dealing with the NYPD.

And, PBA head Lynch speared headed a propaganda campaign highlighted with an online missive that tells the his honor don’t bother being at a cop funeral who died on the job because you… the mayor… obviously don’t give a good got damn about cops any old way…

PBA letter
PBA letter

Now, not all cops are publicly in line with this PBA line of thinking… The unprecedented attack on City Hall received mixed reviews from the rank and file… with some cops, or, cop families saying stuff like…

  • “Politics are politics. I try not to mix them in with my personal feelings. I have no animosity for the mayor.”
  • “I don’t think that’s right. They shouldn’t be doing that … Politics is politics, but that sounds a little personal.”
  • “Nobody liked when (DeBlasio said) that, but it’s not a reason to do something like (what Lynch is doing).”

But, enough cops, so that the numbers matter, sided with Lynch…

Now… the rant…

As far as this stupidity about this issue is concerned… these cops ain’t got a pot to piss in nor a window to throw it out of cause just last week, in this here column, I spoke about a fat black man… aka Elie Mystal… who asked these questions…

  • Why aren’t the “good cops” of the NYPD outraged? Because there are some folks who wear the same uniform who take pride in choking a man to death in the street.
  • And, if it does bother the good cops, then why don’t they say anything? Because doesn’t being a “pillar of your community” involve speaking out when someone does violent and public harm to that community?
  • And, if you are a good cop, then they should understand that he is a part of your community… he says, “Me, right here, the fat black guy who is literally terrified of your power to execute people who look like me: I’m your boy. I’m the guy you signed up to protect. You are supposed to be on my side, not the side of the people who dishonor your uniform. I am polite and courteous to you when we cross paths… (why) aren’t you willing to stand with me now?”
  • Relations between the police and the communities they police cannot improve so long as allegedly good people ignore crimes…
  • Not all Staten Island cops are like the ones who killed Eric Garner? Then where is the loud and proud display by the Finest that opposes these cops?

He also said…“I’ve been black for too long to be surprised that there are cops who would just as soon choke me as look at me. I’ve been black in New York for too long to . . . have a reason to go to Staten Island. But during all that time, I keep hearing about the good New York City cops. I’d like to see one now. One who hasn’t had his tongue cut out. One who will stand with me against the criminals who hunt me.”

And, let’s jump into the wayback machine…  on May 29, 2012, WNYC News said…

  • One in five people stopped last year by the New York City police department was a teenagerNYPD stops teens in Brooklyn between the ages of 14 and 18, according to a WNYC analysis of recently released police data.
  • Eighty-six percent of those teenagers who were stopped were either black or Latino, most of them boys.
  • (In 2011) there were more than 120,000 stops of black and Latino kids between 14 and 18. The total number of black and Latino boys that age in the entire city isn’t much more than that …about 177,000… which strongly suggests a teen male with dark skin in New York City will probably get stopped and frisked by the time he’s graduated from high school.

WNYC also reported that at Stuyvesant High School in Lower Manhattan, which is 96 percent Asian and white, you would be hard pressed to find even one kid among the 3,300 students who has ever been stopped and searched.

One Asian-American student, from Sunset Park, Brooklyn, told WYNC why he belives that he’s never been stopped by cops…  “They’re like hooded, in hoodies. They wear, like, very baggy clothing. And, they’re African-American or Hispanic.”

Another student said: “We’re a bunch of, to be honest, skinny white kids.”

WNYC said… “Cross over to Brownsville, Brooklyn, where there aren’t many skinny white kids, and, the story of stop and frisk suddenly becomes ‘A Tale of Two Cities.’ Brownsville is in the 73rd precinct, which has one of the highest violent crime rates in the city. In this area alone, kids between 14 and 18 made up more than 2,700 of the nearly 8,000 people stopped by police in 2011. Within a three-block radius around Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, police stopped teens 7 times (in 2011).”

The Brownsville kids said they were never surprised when they got stopped by cops, and, that they had had the talk… the talk with a parent about what to do when a police officer rolls up on you: “When the cops come and stop you, just cooperate and do what they say.  Because, if, you do something bad, or, if, you get too violent, they can take you to jail. They not the ones who’s going to get in trouble.”

Left unsaid is that they could wind up dead, if, they even say boo to why they being stopped. No matter how unfair they might perceive it to be.

Never know when it could be called resisting, and, then all sorts of stuff could escalate and start hitting the fan.

Bill de Blasio with son Dante
Bill de Blasio with son Dante

So, anyone still wanna know why DeBlasio said what he said? Because that’s the reality of the situation. If, he didn’t tell his son what he told him, and, then Dante got stopped by cops and said “WTF… why’m I being stopped?”  And the worst case happened… Dante wound up hurt or maybe… dead… then what?

All the tears in the world.. all the cops in the world.. all the good intentioned folks in the world…. all the I’m sorrys… the excuses… even the lies… in the world… all the “we were was only doing our jobs” in the world… and, finally, all the “but he resisted arrests” in the world… won’t ever put Dante back together again.

So, if, all this be true then why should not the mayor of NYC tell his skinny black son to be extra careful around the cops? Because, it’s not like there ain’t bad cops who could, and would, do him harm. And… it’s not like these bad cops are going around revealing who they are… or… that they got a big red sign that says “I’m a bad ass cop who gonna get your ass”… painted on their chest.

And, if, the good cops ain’t squawking then who be talking about the cops who do evil? How is anyone supposed to tell the good from the bad?

And, if, some young kid headed home after chilling with friends, or, maybe a young honey… wearing a hoodie to protect his young ass from the chill blowing off the East River supposed to know what some cop cruiser is up to when it pulls over and says what are ya up to in this nabe, punk? I mean even if that young black hoodie wearing kid be heading home to Gracie Mansion… aka the mayor’s residence…

Like Dante’s dad said… when cops stop to talk at you; be careful young man… it’s just the way it is…

It shouldn’t be, but, it is.

But ya wanna know what really fries my grey matter? What pisses me off? I’ve said it before… but here it is again… for…  what?… nigh over 10,000 years, we been getting ourselves so-called civilized. And, all through that time, all sorts of technological sorts of so-called advances have been made. We even got phones that take videos of ourselves doing nasty and vicious damage to one another… but… this is it? This is as far as we got? This is civilization?

Seems, we might have done just as well to have stayed back in the caves for all the damn good the last 10,000 years or so have done. Still killing one another and for what?

Got to be a better way. Just gots to be…

Imagine it… it’s easy if you try…

2) I said this in my last WTF column… “Most so-called crimes are little crimes that need more logic and common sense to be applied than anything else. Arresting folks should be a last resort, and, using force to arrest folks should be the last of the last resorts.”

Then last Wednesday (12/10) I saw this… Tarrant, Alabama cop hugs grandmother after he buys her eggs she tried to shoplift to feed hungry family.

Here’s the story… Helen Johnson, 47, her 2 daughters, a niece, and, 2 grandchildren under the age of 3, hadn’t eaten in 3 days. How they got there is that the family of 6 depends on a monthly $120 welfare check and somehow the December check got lost in the mail. So, while waiting for a replacement check things got a little dicey and lean in the pantry and they were down to a slice of bread between the whole lot of them.

Johnson scrapped together what money she could… a buck twenty five. Went down to the DollarDollar General store General Store and tied to buy some eggs. Found she was 50 cent short. So, she decided to stuff five of the eggs in a pocket. They broke.

A clerk stopped her and called the cops. She waited for the inevitable arrest.

Officer William Stacy answered the call… Stacy did his job… and… he did the right thing.

He paid for the damn eggs and told the woman to go home.

Johnson hugs Stacy
Johnson hugs Stacy

She broke out in tears hugged the SOB of a lug and tried to give him her the buck twenty five.

He said no.

Stacy said… that he’d been to her home once previously and knew her situation and that the woman was stealing to feed her family. He said, “I felt like it was the right thing to do. I didn’t want to pass judgment on her. Sometimes the best route is to not arrest.”

The cop, who joined the Tarrant Police Department in 2013, also said, “I just like to do my job, do the right thing and come home at the end of the day. But, I feel like this story is needed instead of everyone being negative about law enforcement.”

More cops like Officer Stacy, then we might not be hearing so many damn negative stories.

3) Breaking News…

Terrorists from Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) attacked Peshawar’s Army Public School and Degree College, slaughtering 141 people. Paksitan murders

The killers moved from classroom to classroom and cut down the innocents with automatic weapons and explosives. At one point the fear mongers burnt a teacher alive in front of literally scared to death children. In the end… when they were cornered by Pakistani military… they blew themselves up.

The body count… 141 dead… 132 of them students between ages 6 and 16… and hundreds of children wounded.

Pakistan parents…

  • “Oh God, why did you snatch away my son? What is the sin of my child and all thesePakistani men carry an injured school girl to a hospital children?”
  • “My son was in (school) uniform in the morning, he is in a casket now. My son was my dream. My dream has been killed.”

God had nothing to do with this shit… people did… nasty-ass mean despicable hate mongering stupid ignorant controlling people who hide behind religion and certain archaic, and, (to me) backward social mores…

Fine… ya’ll wanna live by some tribal system… ya’ll wanna think some way that’s contrary to how I think… do it. I really don’t give a damn. It’s your life. But, leave me alone. And, leave all those who don’t cotton to your way of thinking alone, too.

But, these pukes who are killers and madmen, who would try to control others with their hatred and despicable controlling nastiness, are just contrary to what we should be as human beings.

pakistanis say enoughThis hate shit has got to stop… I know I am speaking to the choir… hopefully, I am… BUT… DAMN IT ENOUGH!

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said “the killing of innocent children is contrary to Islam.”

Damn skippy…

I’m gonna guess many have never heard of an old Folk Blues singer and songwriter by the name of Fred Neil… but… he is one of my favorites guitar players and song writers… FYI: he wrote “Everybody’s Talkin’”… and… no. that was Nilsson not Fred Neil who sang it for the movie…

Anyway… I give you these words of his…

“The Dolphins”… aka… “Do You Ever Think of Me?”

neil_fredThis old world may never change
The way it’s been
And all the ways of war
Can’t change it back again

I’ve been searchin’
For the dolphins in the sea
And sometimes I wonder
Do you ever think of me

I’m not the one to tell this world
How to get along
I only know the peace will come
When all hate is gone

I’ve been searchin’…
You know sometimes I think about
Saturday’s child
And all about the time
When we were running wild

I’ve been searchin’…
This old world may never change
This world may never change
This world may never change

(Songwriter: Fred Neil; Published by: Lyrics © BMG Rights Management US, LLC)

4) Don’t know if ya’ll heard about the Sony email leaks… and… if ya’ll did… don’t know, if, you heard about some of the stuff that was leaked in the emails…

Well… I usually don’t follow this stuff, but, it just so happens the rag I read every day had a front page headline that said someone had called Angelina Jolie a “spoiled brat”. So, me being me said “WTF”, and, I found the article, and, I read it…

In a nutshell… Producer Scott Rudin emailed Sony co-chairman… ummm… I mean… co-chairwoman… ahhhh… fuck it… chairperson…

Anyhoo…. Rudin emailed Sony big wig Amy Pascal, and, said… “I’m not destroying my career over a minimally talented spoiled brat who thought nothing of shoving this off her plate for 18 months, so, she could go direct a movie. I have no desire to be making a movie with her, or, anybody, that she runs, and, that we don’t.”

Now granted it was Rudin who called Jolie the “spoiled brat”, and, a minimally one at that… and… granted… it was only through hacked emails that this even saw the light of day, or night, or any light what-so-ever, but, it just goes to show… Roseanne Rosannadanna was right… “It just goes to show you, it’s always something… if, it ain’t one thing, it’s another.”

… And it also goes to show before you ever click on send… write once… check it… recheck it… recheck it again… hit save… let it sit for moment, or, a minute, or, more… then reread it, and, then hit delete…

Rewrite it in a nicer, more diplomatic way, and, then, go through the entire process all over again… and, then, to paraphrase Davy Crockett’s advice… Be sure your right, and, if’n it feels safe, then hit send.

Now as sometimes reality goes on its merry old way… shit happens… Just 2 days after the hacked emails were leaked Pascal met Jolie at The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Power 100 breakfast in Los Angeles, and, she uncomfortably embraced Jolie… and… in the If’n looks could kill category…

An Oscar, 2 SAGs, 3 Golden Globes and I can buy and sell you… Bitch…
An Oscar, 2 SAGs, 3 Golden Globes and I can buy and sell you… Bitch…
Kobe free throws earns NBA 3 spot
Kobe free throws earns NBA 3 spot

5) News item: Kobe Bryant surpassed Michael Jordan on the NBA’s all-time scoring list Sunday and moved into third place behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone.

To commemorate the moment, Nike, which sponsors both athletes, put a special edition “Mamba Moment” shoe on sale.

Yeah… they commemorated it all right. Commemorated it to the tune of $245 per “Mamba Moment”.

Some honorific… huh? Like they say sho’em the money.

Only in America…

6) Saw this item in the NYDN last week… “City council members turned up the heat Wednesday on the FDNY to hire more women as firefighters.” firefighters

Why they do this? Because according to their stats… Only 44 of the department’s 10,500 firefighters are women… less than one-half of 1%.

Queens Democrat Elizabeth Crowley, chairwoman of the Committee on Fire and Criminal Justice Services said, “This is simply unacceptable. It is time we break down any barriers that still exist for women to become New York City firefighters.”

And, compared to other cities, as well as the nation, the argument has some weight… San Francisco, 15% of the firefighters are women; Seattle it’s 8% and the national average is 4.5%.

So, this how Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said he’s started to address the situation…

  • The rules at the Fire Academy have been changed to give less weight to physical tests, known as functional skills training.
  • Probationary firefighters will no longer be barred from graduating just for failing those tests.

Now just hold on thar Baba Looey… if, this means ya’ll is gonna say the tests for women are gonna be different than the tests for men, then, we is got one big bone to be picking with ya’ll.

Ya mean, someone’s life may depend… in a blazing fire with walls and floors collapsing, and, on an upper floor in a tenement building… a life may depend upon whether some freaking woman can’t pick up and carry as much weight as a man?

Then brother we do have a problem. tenement

This is my way of looking at this “problem”…

I’m all for equal opportunity… as long as the rules are followed equally. Whatever the physical tests are for a person to become a firefighter, they best be equally administered for each and every person, regardless of sex.

Nuff said.

7) Back on December 23, 2011, Yahnick Martin was sitting in a rented van, while his wife dropped off a Christmas present.

Martin, a proud papa of 3 kids was smoking a cigar which for some reason made a police van passing by get a tad suspicious.

According to court records… the cops, when they pulled next to Martin’s van, said they smelled pot. So one cop asked martin to step out of the van and patted him down… the old stop and frisk.

Yahnick Martin
Yahnick Martin

And, as far as that went, all was hunky dory… according to departmental procedures, at any rate.

But, when the patter did not find anything suspicious… like a weapon, or, a weed smoking pipe, or, a lump that could be a baggie full of pot… the patter still reached into the man’s pocket and removed his wallet and lighter.

And, that it seems was beyond acceptable procedures for the guy being patted… at this point Martin said enough was enough, and, asked what the devil was going on…

Out come the cuffs… and, as he was being placed in the police van for the ride downtown, he asked the cops to secure the van, which was still running and contained his children’s car seats, clothing, his wife’s pocketbook, two cell phones and the Christmas gifts.

Yessiree, buddy… cops didn’t, and someone did… steal Martin’s rented van.

Cops found it later… minus all the valuables.

And one of trhe cops added insult to injury… “That’s too bad. You should have thought of that before being a smartass.”

The charge Martin then faced? Disorderly conduct. Which, by the by, was eventually dismissed.

Martin sued in federal court.

Long story short… The city Law Department is now paying $50,000 to Yahnick Martin to settle the case. Merry Christmas!….

A tad late for 2011, but, still, pretty damn merry for 2014.

Martin told the Daily news… “My family, we have to deal with this the rest of our lives, and there’s no amount of money that can take back what we missed out on that Christmas holiday. I lost two aunts that following year who never got a chance to meet my children because we weren’t there for Christmas . . . It’s a tradition to go to South Carolina, (and) that was the only time I’ve ever missed Christmas at home.”

The cop who started this entire snafu was reminded that sometimes there are limits to what a cop can do. And, just to make sure he understood that, and, that sometimes there are repercussions for stupid and bad stuff that is done… he was forced to kick in $500 toward the settlement and docked eight vacation days by Police Commissioner Bill Bratton for improperly searching through Martin’s pockets.

“Good” is all I gots to say. Good all the way around.

8) Cops in Lowell, Michigan, are pulling over people for minor infractions… stuff that they normally wouldn’t waste their time with… like a supposed nonworking headlight, tinted windows or driving through a yellow light.

While stopped, the officer made some small talk, and, strangely would ask what they would like for Christmas. Most peeps reacted, “Okay… I’m getting a ticket, but, at least, this guy ain’t busting my stones too bad.” Some people did just ask for their ticket and the cops would let them go on their way.

One small problem… for those peeps that were patient and just spoke with the cops who were making the stop… a little secret Santa action was going on… Lowell, Michigan Police Pull Drivers Over, Give Them Presents

The cop had a microphone on, and, an UP TV crew was down the road at a department store. They would hurriedly grab the item and rush it to the vehicle. And, viola… Santa done came early.

Over two days, Up TV’s campaign spent between $8,000 and $10,000 on presents from stuff like Legos to even TVs.

It was all recorded on video and, of course, can be found on the internet.

One scene showed that when one woman’s git came she was shocked and asked… “So am I getting a, I’m not getting a ticket right?” The cop responded… “I can give you one if you want.”

The final tally… Of the 50 people stopped, about 30 of them stayed around long enough to get their presents.

9) News item: An Alabama educator is picking up the pieces of her life after a student wrongly accused her of sexual abuse.

A judge recently dismissed charges against Catherine Bell, 34, a year after she was arrested and lost her job as a result of December 2013 charges that she’d had sex with a student.

Bell was an assistant principal at Pelham High School in late 2013 when the rumors about her supposed sexual tryst with a student came to light. She was suspended by the district and eventually resigned under the pressure of the growing sex case.

Now… The student involved is not cooperating with prosecutors, and, admits the supposed relationship never happened.

Meantime… Bell couldn’t find a job following the arrest, and, was forced to sell her house and move in with her mother.

Catherine Bell
Catherine Bell

Bell’s lawyer says, “Condemnation is quick; vindication is slow and tedious. This case was generated from the get-go by a rumor mill, but we think the dismissal was the correct thing to do and now she seeks to normalize her life, which has been a rollercoaster for the last year.”

The real problem? This woman will never recover what she has lost that was most precious to her… not the house, or, the job… her reputation… her name.

Because say what anyone will… all the recanting that will be done… all the news stories that will be printed… all the retractions… all the everything that will say she was never guilty of sexually abusing a student will never fully fade from the public’s memory.

Unfortunately, in this world we live.. .the first thing some people hear is what they will remember regardless, if, the truth proves otherwise.

See, that’s the trouble with this accusation stuff… if, it’s true, then hit those abusers with all the legal system has. But, if it ain’t? Then, how do the pieces get picked up and how does some one get their name back?

A teenage boy got an innocent woman arrested… an entire community was set against her… then the boy told a court he lied.

And, now it’s just over? Ask Catherine Bell that question.

It ain’t all that damn easy… is it?

10) News item: South Dakota officials shuttered a “Don’t Jerk and Drive” campaign after complaintsjerk that the public safety push was too inappropriate.

This speaks for itself… I mean, honestly…

Who thinks this stuff up, and, then, who let’s it get out there?

It’s true… ya just can’t make this stuff up.

One more item…

10A)  Don’t know, if, ya’ll heard or read about the widow who dropped her diamond wedding anddiamond-donation engagement ring, worth $1,850, into a Salvation Army kettle with a note that said she hoped that the rings could raise money to buy toys for children.

Now… an anonymous donor has offered to buy the rings for $21,000, which will benefit the charity, and hopes to reunite the rings to their original owner.


Merry Christmas…

This weeks gratuitous pics….




toni G








Toni Garrn (22) is a German model















and anothersnowy stoat thousand words…




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  1. Lynch is always pissed off. I know his job is to defend the police officers, but he sounds a bit nuts to me sometimes. As far as DeBlasio being late to everything? That’s just downright disrespectful. I used to work for a politician (won’t say who) so I understand somethings are out of your control in regards to time, but things like a funeral? You got to be on time (or at least a little late) for.

    As usual, great stuff.

  2. I don’t know why… but, Lynch sounds like he has the same attitude as Donald Fehr had when he was the head of the MLBPA… always had be confrontational and combative. Yes, we know you represent the “workers” but do ya have to be such a noodge while you do it?

  3. Nice rant , . . . er, blog, Joe.

    With reference to the stuff on cops, I had an experience more than twenty years ago which changed my entire attitude about our “protectors.” In coming out of a convenience store, a squad car zipped around the corner unexpectedly and stopped by me. Two officers jumped out of the car and–never saying a word to me–slammed me against the brick wall of the store and patted me down, poking their hands into my pockets and removing stuff. Eventually they told me I could go, but never said anything in the way of explanation or apology. From that day to this I cannot look at a cop without wondering who is going to protect me from him or her.

    Why is this so important to what you wrote? I am white and the cops were white. I grew up with the friendly image of the kindly Irish cop on the beat who would help you find your lost dog or your home if you were lost. That is all gone now. From that experience I could now understand in my gut as well as in my head why police are under fire–nationally and around the world. I can understand in my gut particularly why minorities feel the need to be protected from their supposed protectors.

    I later learned that the police in my case were responding to a report of a robbery at the store I had just exited. I have tried to make adjustments in my attitude in the light of this information, but intellectual understanding is not sufficient to counter a strong negative experience–not in my case or in the case of many others. In my daily life, I interact with some people who are police officers. The only way I can relate to them socially is to block off my knowledge that they are police.

    And whenever I see a squad car or a patrol officer, I ask myself the question that is at least two thousand years old, “Who is to protect us from our protectors?”

  4. FYI: In 1969 I was a very right wing person. I went to LA in 1969 and had some interactions with LAPD & CHP. By the time I came back to Connecticut and the University of Bridgeport in 1970… just in time for Kent State and May Day… I was a lot more left leaning.

    I have since had other interactions with cops… some because I was an asshole & some undeserved.

    I don’t hate cops but I am wary around them. I still get a little hinky when I see one, yet, I haven no real reason to be that way. It’s just ingrained in my brain, I guess.

  5. Joe, it sounds like you have done a lot of growing over the years. My political involvement began in 1960 when a candidate for president came to my college. He mentioned the idea that it should be possible to serve the US in a capacity other than the military. This idea later became the Peace Corps.

    (I don’t think JFK was all that good as a prexy, except he had the ability to articulate thoughts and feelings of those who weren’t being heard. Examples include, “Ask not what your country can do for you, . . . “, “The torch has been passed to a new generation . . .”, and, of course, “Ich bin ein Berliner.”)

    With an already left of center political orientation, the demonstrations at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago was an eye opener. Public officials I did not admire did despicable things which strengthened my leftist social leanings. Public officials I had admired seemed oblivious to what was really going on. The “Chicago 8 (well, . . . 7 when Bobby Peale was separated from the rest) were charged with conspiracy. Abbie Hoffman’s response to this: “Conspiracy? Hell, we couldn’t even agree on lunch.” As a result of a nasty right and an impotent left, I became even more radicalized socially.

    But with this was my political positions economically. I saw that current economic policies had the effect of draining resources from the poor to enhance the resources of the rich. I called this “Hood Robbin'” since it was a reversal of the legendary Robin Hood. My ultimate goal is to stop the robbery of the poor, since I was one of them at one time. The first step in doing this is to insure that every individual and group does not spend more resources than it has coming in (except perhaps for borrowing from the future to meet a current emergency).

    I thus have described myself as a social liberal and an economic conservative. When I say this and get a lifted eyebrow, my response is, “Try it sometime. It’s very difficult to be both. But if you can succeed, you will find it is worth it.”

    And so politically, I am a friend of those who have no friends and an enemy of those who make me an enemy. (cf the old radio show “Boston Blackie).

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