Tragedies often rocket racial issues to the front stage for national debate, allowing them to be casually picked apart by folks who are not consistently aware of the poor quality of daily police interactions with Black residents. And no wonder those interactions are so poor and White residents are so unaware of them: police officers, and arguably our society at large, are vulnerable to giving White suspects more benefit of the doubt than we give to Black suspects….
When he won the November election de Blasio didn’t hesitate to declare his belief in Broken Windows policing and soon appointed one of the philosophy’s proponents, Bill Bratton, as NYPD Commissioner. That appointment was added to the mound of long-term criticisms of the NYPD and its culture after Eric Garner was killed during a police arrest for illegal cigarette sales. Officers had been video taped executing a prohibited choke hold on Garner, and critics questioned the necessity of enforcing such small crimes especially after no cigarettes were found on Garner’s body.
The infusion of over 12 million dollars into Operation SNUG, a non-police violence prevention program, could be an attempt at finding a new balance to crime fighting after many in the City have all but lost faith in the NYPD.
Many women participated both behind the scenes and well in front, but their triumphs and necessary work were often overshadowed by a male-centric historic retelling of the Harlem’s Renaissance era. Despite that, no one can deny that several women – especially the few noted below – made major contributions to this artistic pivotal movement….
At least one outlet has made the case that the 120th precinct, where Eric Garner died after being put in a chokehold during an arrest, might be the NYPD’s “Siberia” for trouble officers. Seven of the City’s top 10 most sued officers are assigned to a narcotics unit operating primarily in the 120th precinct. Additionally, according to the city records cited by the Daily News, “the precinct is tied for 11th place in substantiated complaints that occurred between 2009 and 2013, even though it ranks 33rd in population citywide….”
Although the de Blasio Administration chose to highlight subway acrobats and dancers, mostly active young men of color, it’s clear that many people of several backgrounds are affected by this arguably illicit crackdown. Musical and silent performers too have been victimized. Talented people, some of whom have given decades of their lives to their arts and others who are all but entrepreneurs in their field, have been lumped into the newest version of the age old “angry, physically built negro who’s quick to violence” trope. Which is why Bratton will never willingly mention anyone but the subway acrobats in his descriptions, or offer a negotiated way to protect performers in the subway system. That would stretch beyond the simple image of swinging monkeys causing chaos that he wants in your head….
Similar to the events surrounding the murder of Michael Brown, NYPD Lieutenant Gilligan’s shooting of Bronx 9th grader James Powell in Harlem on July 16th of 1964 sparked 6 days of protests including intermittent rioting.
But what was so noteworthy, but probably most overlooked about the Harlem riots was the aftermath. A year after rioting Harlem got Project Uplift, the largest short-term anti-poverty program, in terms of target population and funding, of the emerging War on Poverty….
According to the NY Times New York City received four armored vehicles since 2006 through the Defense Department’s free military transfer program. Most likely those vehicles went into the hands of the NYPD’s elite Emergency Service Unit, a souped-up version of SWAT with post-WWI origins.