Random thoughts.


Remember, it seems like only a year or so ago when the media and the politicians thought that the solution to police violence were dash-cams and body-cams.

It has become clear here in Chicago that there is not a technological answer to the issue of police brutality.

Not if the mayor, the state’s attorney, the police superintendent and the Fraternal Order of Police conspire to lock that video tape up for a year and refuse to release it.

Now there is news that there is another video from a police killing that took place even before the shooting of Laquan McDonald. Ronald Johnson was killed while running away from police. The police said he had a gun. It seems the video shows something quite different. The city, State’s Attorney Alvarez and the police refuse to hand the video over.

Then there is the 83 minutes of video from a surveillance camera at a Burger King that were erased by the police. The camera was recording what happened on the street when Laquan McDonald was shot sixteen times by officer Jason Van Dyke.

Since yesterday’s firing of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy we keep hearing about the need to change the culture of the CPD.

Changing the culture sounds very benign when we are talking about dead Black men and women who have been killed by the CPD. Chicago holds the record for the most police killings in the country and fourth highest per-capita.

Dash-cams and body-cams haven’t stopped the killing. This is not a problem that can be solved by technology alone.

And I don’t know about any culture change. That sounds like some more diversity training workshops.

If you are someone who jumps out of a police car and fires sixteen bullets in 13 seconds at a seventeen year old Black kid who is on the ground after the second shot, I don’t believe diversity training is the answer either.

I lean more towards the current call for a real independent civilian review board – not appointed by the Mayor – to replace the do-nothing not-really-Independent Civilian Review Authority we have now.

6 thoughts on “Random thoughts.

  1. keep it going brother fred! and don’t forget to check out michaelgaylordjames.com great photos for sale

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  2. Fred,
    Stuff at Random.
    Last reformer was Jordie Weiss. Got run out of town on a rail.
    Need to change from ground up. Start with vetting at hiring level, psychological profiles and all that.
    Then training. More use of “non lethal ” methods of subduing folks. Still don’t understand why the taser was “in transit”. I would have been tempted to let him walk/run down Pulaski until he ran out of gas and quit, then throw him in the wagon.
    The other thing that’s bothersome is how a cop can accumulate so many complaints without any apparent action taken. If cop is doing his job he will get complaints, but there is a point where something has to be done about them, especially if they result on settlements. Guess you won’t say much about that though ’cause its a union thing, just like him making $100K while waiting to be indicted.
    Speaking of indictments is there anybody else to be indicted here for things like disabling audio tracks on dashcams or the BKing tape fiasco?
    Can’t let the aldermen off the hook here. How many of them saw the video at the time of the $5MM settlement being paid. Not one brought up a potential problem. How many of the “black caucus” remained silent then. How many of the caucus voted for the police contract? They are all indignant now, I’m sure.
    The ultimate culprit here is the state’s attorney. She had the wherewithal, and its her job, to do the right thing and stop this whole thing in its tracks. Quite simple really, just tell mayor “this is a murder and I am proceeding accordingly so get your ducks in a row. Period, end of discussion.
    By the way, average time from incident to end of investigation on a police shooting in U.S. is about 200 days nationwide. This was not typical, but 400 days is a bit much.
    The new head cop has to be somebody who understands what he has to deal with in terms of the rank and file and the culture, col;or of skin is irrelevant and most important can’t be a p[political animal.
    If threatened with job for not playing along he quits and goes public. So, big city cop with experience and nothing to lose. Think he’ll get hired?

  3. So a high school student is caught with a gun in his back pack at a suburban high school. All kind a of alarms go off and the kid has the book thrown at him. No actual threats were ever made.
    College student at UICC threatens to shoot folks at the U of Chicago, campus is shut sown and FBI investigates. Guy is caught and released to his mother for committing a “youthful indiscretion”. Query. What is fundamental difference between these two cases?

  4. If you are indicating that “Fred centered curriculum” means having a life-time interest in learning, then you are right. My favorite joke on myself, was when one snowy day I was called upon in the next ten minutes to teach a bunch of sixth-graders about the architecture of ancient Rome. In conclusion I suggested they could remember the historic order in which Greek columns were made, doric, ionic and corinthian,  or DIC for short.Yes it took me a while to get  those boys back on task. To this day I chuckle to myself when walking by a truly classical piece of architecture.Mary Richie

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