Again, the problem with EDGE is there is ZERO accountability. These so called business leaders grandstand with their projections of people hired, jobs created, and taxes generated by their PILOT's but who follows up on these projections? No one! Electrolux, the Riverboat Company, Nike, etc.. all made promises to create new jobs and hire a certain percentage of Memphis residents as employees. They were all awarded big PILOT's and EDGE members congratulated each other and their new business partners with cigars and whiskey. But nobody ever follows up on these promises. If the Riverboat Company promised to hire 100 Memphians and an audit shows they only hired 50... what would happen? Not a darn thing. It's all political grandstanding and corporate welfare. And if the City has money problems? Hey, blame the employees! The City can always steal from its employees to help pay the bills.
Just as Strickland did several years ago when he led the charge to plunder the retiree healthcare fund to balance the City's budget.
What change? Strickland is the same as Wharton, just another mouthpiece for the Greater Memphis Chamber and the power brokers of Memphis. In other news, MPD had another 13 police officers resign in the last two weeks. Officers are leaving in droves just as I've predicted in my other posts for the past few years. Take away pay, benefits, healthcare, freeze hiring, and no raises in the last seven years speaks volumes. Thanks Strickland, you're just as responsible as AC. Strickland helped steal 4.6% pay from employees for two years and when they finally get their original pay back, he says it amounts to a raise?!!! WTH?!!! Sorry Jim, but no thanks.
Bruce - When is the article of the execution of 2 NY cops coming out? I'm interested in the liberal slant.
But I don't understand your way of thinking Bruce. In 18 years as a cop I can honestly say there was only 1 cop I knew of that was a dangerous loose cannon. And said cop wound up getting arrested for a robbery years ago. While I know that numerous cops have been arrested throughout the years I've never seen that side of them at work. I'm sure someone could research all the employees at the Flyer for the past 10 years and find some that have been arrested for domestic violence, assault, theft, drug possession, and DUI. Would it be fair for me to ask you Bruce why you didn't speak up when you were working with a drunk wife beater? Cops might know who the lazy officers are or who cheats on their spouse but the vast majority are not aware of the criminal actions an officer might be doing behind the scenes. Maybe cops tend to err on the side of other cops because we have life experience. We know what it's like to try to arrest someone who is resisting. We know how a calm situation can turn into a dangerous one in an instant. I absolutely know a small percentage of cops can do bad things but I don't understand how defending yourself when a gun is pointed at you is considered the wrong and criminal. Or defending yourself when someone attacks you and try's to take your gun. Cops also know how so-called witnesses lie on cops all the time. This was proven yet again in Ferguson. How many Ferguson witnesses later recanted and said they actually didn't see the shooting! A whole lot!
But I do agree with Jeff from earlier. If you want the best of the best to be police officers you create stringent requirements for hiring (such as a college degree and/or military service) and you pay them well with excellent benefits. Memphis has lowered the criteria to the point where only a high school diploma is needed and you can get a waiver even if you have a criminal history. We haven't had a raise since Herenton and our insurance has been hiked and retiree healthcare slashed. Now pensions are axed for some. Again I ask you, with all the responsibility and danger associated with being a cop in Memphis, who will apply given the current pay and benefit package. Who will be willing to strap on a bullet proof vest everyday and kiss their families goodbye knowing that if they are killed their wife/husband will only get a paltry 401a and no healthcare? I'm afraid the people you find will have no investment in the City and they will be susceptible to corruption....
Poor misinformed liberals. Jeff, you do realize the officer was not choking Garner right? You do know Garner did not die on the scene but rather an hour and a half later at the hospital. Garner had some severe medical problems that contributed to his death. And cops should give a suspect a chance to surrender while the suspect points a gun at them? Umm ok. Write that law up and send it to the state legislature. "Maybe he's pointing a gun at you because he doesn't see you". .??? That's why cops wear uniforms and drive around in marked police cars. But go ahead and sip your coffee and/or wine in your little midtown bistro while waxing philosophically about the ills of man. I bet you've never been cruising through Orange Mound, Whitehaven, North Memphis, Binghampton, Smokey City, or any of the other high crime parts of Memphis after dark. And Bruce, if you want to find out about cops, do some ride alongs. Ask to ride along with Memphis cops for a week or two. You're a journalist it's your responsibility to see issues from both sides. You would be surprised how many dislike the union, and how many cops do little things each day to help citizens. See how cops answer calls, request to go on some OCU drug/weapon searches, just talk to a cop sometime and see what it's like from the other side.
Bruce - read my first comment. I've seen the video. Yes it happened quick. But you must not assume. Like I said, I don't know if the cop saw the armed individual walking and immediately drove up to him, or, was the cop driving through the park looking for the armed individual and saw him at the last second? I've responded to countless armed party calls where the suspect was either not on the scene, or not in the same location as the caller stated. I believe the caller in the Cleveland incident said the armed individual was near the swing set area. If the cop was driving through the park headed to the swing set area he might not have seen the suspect coming out of the gazebo until the last second. What I do see in the video is a person of unknown age pointing a gun numerous times. It also appears that he pulls the gun out and is holding it with both hands when the cop car pulls up. Imagine if you can: the officers are responding to a call about a person with a gun in the park. They make it to the park and start driving towards the area the suspect was last seen. When suddenly the cop in the passenger seat yells, "There he is!". The suspect has stepped out from a gazebo and is only mere feet from the car AND he's holding a gun (a realistic looking pellet gun). The cop driver stops and both officers jump out. The cop on the passenger side had nowhere to take cover while the officer on the driver's side could use the car as cover. They were probably yelling verbal commands as the suspect raised the gun up and then it's self-defense. You can Monday morning QB this incident all day. It can also be used in training. But if the fact of the matter is the kid pointed a realistic looking gun at the officer and the officer feared for his life then deadly force is justified. Yes it happened fast but these things always happen fast.
Ideally the cops could have located the individual sooner and parked farther away and used the loudspeaker on the car to give him verbal commands to drop the gun and lay on the ground. That would have been great. But if it happened like I described above what choice did they have? Should one of the cops "taken one in the chest for the team?"
Charlie - I must have missed the class on distinguishing a toy gun from a real gun in 2 seconds while it's pointed at you while I was at the academy.
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By Richard Alley
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