‘Fidelis ad mortem‘. Faithful unto death. This is the motto of the New York City Police Department. If you’ve been a cop long enough in anywhere USA, there’s a good chance you’ve heard someone joke at some point about the job being ‘dead’, usually in response to poor leadership, an unpopular management decision and almost always accompanied by an eye-roll. After today’s decision made by the NYPD’s gutless Commissioner James O’Neill to bow to political pressure and fire NYPD Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo, it appears that death has finally arrived.
It’s one thing when a cop jokes about the job being dead. It’s something totally different when those words come from NYPD PBA President Pat Lynch’s mouth. The decision to fire Officer Pantaleo will resonate well beyond the city limits. The circus clowns that run New York City and the NYPD have set a dangerous precedence that will effect how police officers are perceived and treated all across this nation.
Eric Garner’s family members have spent the better part of the last few weeks making flagrant threats against the NYPD and, by name, Officer Pantaleo, using language like “I’m coming for you!”. While threatening the ‘biggest march’ New York City has ever seen, Eric’s daughter, Emerald, referred to Officer Pantaleo as a murderer, even wearing a shirt labeling him as same.
What Emerald, her family and the criminal advocates seem to have missed was that a Grand Jury in Staten Island, NY, heard this case and returned a ‘No True Bill’, meaning there was not enough evidence to warrant an indictment of Officer Pantaleo. They seem to have forgotten that not one but TWO separate federal investigations resulted in the finding of no evidence of a crime. As PBA President Pat Lynch described, the video of the incident, which has been publicly viewed, was dissected second by second in a courtroom and resulted in the same findings.
When New York City’s joke of a Mayor and Presidential hopeful, Bill deBlasio, stood in Detroit and guaranteed ‘justice’ for the Garner family, did anyone really expect a different decision today? Officer Pantaleo’s fate was sealed that day and this was all just required theater to make it appear as though a process was actually followed; and for the record, what was served today wasn’t justice. It was vengeance.
Today, Commissioner O’Neill had the unique opportunity to stand in front of his Officers at a pivotal crossroad and defend them, earning the right to be called a cop’s cop, as we’ve often heard. However, the 36 year police veteran proved that, when it really came down to it, he is nothing more than a political puppet concerned more about his own well-being than the true justice for his own decorated police officer. Commissioner O’Neill and his political-hack cronies sent the message that, if you throw a big enough temper tantrum, you too can have anything you want no matter what the evidence shows. Spineless leadership manifested.
As I watched the nonsense unfold today, I was reminded of a scene from the 2007 Jamie Foxx movie, “The Kingdom”. There’s a moment where Richard Jenkins, who plays the director of the FBI, is being verbally shellacked by the Attorney General over a wildly unpopular decision that he had made. I got to thinking, this is how O’Neill COULD have responded:
The August 2nd recommendation made by the NYPD’s Deputy Commissioner of Trials Rosemarie Maldonado to fire Officer Pantaleo was, in reality, nothing more than that: a recommendation. All of the Mayor’s promises made in Detroit meant nothing. The decision made today to fire Officer Pantaleo falls squarely on the shoulders of a man who should have known better; and there’s no way around that fact.
When police officers are required to use force in order to effect an arrest, the possibility of a tragedy occurring is exponentially increased. However, a tragedy is not a crime. Once Officer Pantaleo informed Mr Garner that he was under arrest, to which Mr Garner, who was a well-documented and known offender and twice the size of Officer Pantaleo, balled up his fists and said, “Not today”, HE chose the fight. HE chose to initiate a series of events that ultimately caused his own acknowledged preexisting poor health to result in his tragic death. If he felt like he was being unjustly arrested, there is a process for dealing with that. Nowhere does that process involve resisting arrest.
If you were to walk up to a stranger on the street and pick a fight, that could end tragically wrong for you. Why would you think that would be any different with a police officer? Do you honestly believe that a criminal can fight with no rules but a police officer has to fight nice?
The fact of the matter is that the loss of Eric Garner is a tragedy; one that his family will never recover from, no matter how much ‘justice’ they are served, be it the 5.9 million dollar settlement the city awarded them in 2015 or today’s pandering firing of Officer Pantaleo. There was no crime committed here by Officer Pantaleo and, ironically, his firing doesn’t serve justice. In reality, today’s firing robbed Officer Pantaleo of HIS justice; it robbed Officer Pantaleo of the presumption of innocence that all Americans are entitled to regardless of where they work. Officer Pantaleo, despite being awarded 14 service medals over his career, being credited with taking hundreds of weapons off the streets of New York City and being cleared of any criminal wrong-doing in this case, was served up as a sacrifice to the angry mob; a mob that will never be satiated. Just as Pat Lynch said himself in a statement released earlier today: “He (Commissioner O’Neill) will wake up tomorrow to discover that the cop-haters are still not satisfied, but it will be too late.”
If you wear a shield, regardless of where you serve, you should be paying close attention to this debacle. The NYPD is one of the most storied and prestigious departments in the country and their PBA is lead by one of the strongest Presidents of any union in this country. If this can happen to Officer Pantaleo under those circumstances, you’d better believe that it can happen to YOU. Indemnification is becoming the punchline to a joke; and the joke is on us.
If you are not a police officer, you too should be paying close attention. The level of disrespect and disregard for the American police officer effects you as well. The more devalued our police officers become, the thinner the ‘line’ gets. If you believe this is really a fight against tyrannical police officers and not a masked anarchist movement, then you’re sleeping at the wheel. The saddest part of this tragedy is that the Garner family is nothing more than the flavor of the day being used as pawns by hate-breeding criminals like Al Sharpton and all those who have long track records of capitalizing on tragedy. Long after all the names have faded away, the American police officer will be left behind to navigate the increased dangers that this latest decision created.
The line indeed got thinner today, ladies and gentlemen; and we all became a little unsafer. If I can give you one piece of advice, don’t underestimate the effect of the latest anti-law enforcement trend. Protect the 2nd Amendment and have a plan for you and your family; because when the animals don’t fear the rule of law anymore, your locked door isn’t going to mean a damned thing.