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View Diary: Another day, another NYPD brutal beating caught on tape (30 comments)

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  •  Courtest, Respect And Professionalism (7+ / 0-)

    Their motto is on every police car, but apparently for some of them it's a load of CRAP.

    But old timers might remember why they don't have independent review.  Back in the 1960s, when the force was almost all white and there was a lot of "police brutality" (the term was common then) in the news, a "civilian review board" was created.  I think that was under Mayor Lindsay, but it was a long time ago...

    But it ended in the tribal politics of the city. conservative white politicians used opposition to the civilian review board as a dogwhistle.  And since the polity was still controlled by white politicians, the board was abolished, and no politician wanted to touch it again.

    Of course it is overdue for revival.

    •  So they broke it on purpose? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cinnamon, corvo, FloridaSNMOM, Tonedevil

      Sounds about right for corruption.

      "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

      by Horace Boothroyd III on Mon Oct 15, 2012 at 02:43:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you for the backstory (2+ / 0-)

      I was born in '67, and had no idea that happened, it was before my time of awareness, if not my actual "time" - and I fully agree, the time has come, the dynamics of race and power are changing... just because it didn't work once, doesn't mean it won't work again... 50 YEARS later is too long to wait.

      Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. ~ Yoda Political Compass: -8.50, -6.46

      by Cinnamon on Mon Oct 15, 2012 at 02:54:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A little more detail (3+ / 0-)

        The city does have a review board, but it is not as strong as one would like.  Its independence waxes and wanes.  The highs and lows are summarized in this period:

        The Lindsay Plan
        After his election in 1965, Mayor John Lindsay appointed former federal judge Lawrence E. Walsh to investigate the operation of the police department and make suggestions for improvement. While the bulk of Walsh's report focused on modernization, the report also argued that, in order to instill public confidence that investigations of civilian complaints were handled fairly, the board itself should have civilian representation.

        Opposition to Lindsay
        Lindsay formed a search committee, chaired by former Attorney General Herbert Brownell, to find civilians to serve on the board. John Cassese, the president of the Patrolman's Benevolent Association (PBA), rigorously opposed a civilian presence on the board, stating "I'm sick and tired of giving in to minority groups with their whims and their gripes and shouting." The mayor's search committee found four candidates, whom the mayor appointed, and for the first time in the city's history, people outside the department oversaw the investigations of complaints against police officers.

        A Crucial Vote
        Lindsay's board did not last long. Cassese and the PBA collected signatures to force a ballot measure to bar civilians from having any oversight of police complaints. The ensuing campaign was bitter on all sides; the PBA made appeals to safety and fear, stating that with civilian oversight the police would not be able to do their job properly, and the forces in favor of civilian participation painted their opponents as bigots and racists. The ballot measure won overwhelmingly, and the board returned to its previous all-police makeup.

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