The people who carry guns and wear uniforms in the name of public service have to respect and obey civilians and civilian authority or else they are an occupying army. And that's what everyone demonstrating in the streets of America is complaining about.
Advocates uniformly agreed: increased levels of punishment and restriction will neither curb violence nor create better conditions for DOC employees or the people who have the misfortune to be in their custody.
In New York City, since protests began over the treatment of African-Americans caught up in the criminal justice system, the police union there has done everything possible to inflame tensions and undermine civil authority.
So it's time to end the noise and hostility, and initiate change. A good place to start would be for police departments and community leaders to start speaking with each other instead of at each other, and to do it in a meeting room instead of on the streets.
Going into his second year this remains the greatest challenge for the mayor -- to make sure that New Yorkers know he is more focused on running the city as he is on fulfilling his progressive agenda. It's not an either-or scenario, he can do both.
The police who turned their backs didn't just turn their backs on Mayor de Blasio; they turned their backs on the legacy of Officer Ramos. They turned their backs on the people they've sworn to protect. In essence they proclaimed, "We are not walking the streets on duty to protect you."
Like many freshmen, Mayor Bill de Blasio had some moments of glory and some rookie stumbles in his first year in office. Now, as we head into the holiday season of good cheer (and school break) here is a brief report card of how the mayor performed in some of the difficult subjects.
It has been a week since Ismaayl Brinsley, a deranged man with a long criminal record, killed two New York City police officers, Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos, in cold blood, but so far we haven't heard a word from the National Rifle Association.
De Blasio has been exceptionally evenhanded in his respect for police while trying to help us grasp the perspectives of people of color. He has tried to be a true friend to the NYPD, in the sense of a friend who believes in you enough to be critical when you can be better.
It's time for gift-giving and year-end celebrations, so take our latest Week to Week news quiz and see who's giving what to whom.
I pray for unity in the city, as pain runs deep in many communities. But, we will no longer tolerate those, like Pat Lynch, who want to create more pain by attempting to divide the people and those who have taken an oath to protect and serve them.
What is needed now is calm and thoughtfulness, and a real willingness to engage in dialogue on both sides. But respecting law enforcement is a critical part of that equation.
In the months since Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was killed by police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, a nationwide debate ha...
Although it took almost a year to get there, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has put in place the third critical piece of the city's sustainability leadership.
So here we are, approaching Christmas 2014. Racism still taints the American dream. And unlike, say, in 1964 when there was a sense of a movement on the march with history on its side, it is hard to summon up optimism.
After white cops kill three black suspects, two grand juries seem steered to no charges. What's different now are huge, national non-violent protests involving tens of thousands yet no demonstrator deaths, unlike '60s race riots. Could this actually be a "teachable moment" leading to change? Maybe yes, Matalin and Reagan agree.