The public health crisis continues into the lives of police officers as well. My realization was surprising. I had not perceived officers as victims in the traditional sense, but there are vulnerabilities that need to be addressed to improve policing.
Last week, as Baltimore braced for renewed protests over the death of Freddie Gray, the Baltimore Police Department prepared for battle. In response to a local march, the BPD did what any self-respecting police department in post-9/11 America would do: it declared war on the protesters.
In 1973, between the first two Godfather films, Al Pacino hung his hat on another iconic film and character of '70s cinema. The film was Serpico, based on the true story of New York City Police Detective Frank Serpico who, in 1971, broke the code of silence.
Most people have no idea that the Pentagon is holding a major celebration to celebrate Vaisakhi. Or that Vaisakhi is the birthday of the world's fifth largest religion. Why? Because the Sikh community as a whole, is often ignored in this country.
When I first met Joshua Lopez, I have to admit that I wasn't familiar with the case of his uncle, John Collado. Collado was shot and killed by an undercover NYPD detective in 2011. Collado's name isn't as widely-known as some others.
"Body cameras are a huge joke." That was one of the responses of Jewel Miller, mother of Eric Garner's one year old baby daughter, Legacy, to the body camera 'reform' ideas that were now being further embraced around the country after the videotaped shooting death of Walter Scott in South Carolina earlier this month.
This insanity in incarcerating non-violent offenders for long periods of time must stop. From Jailer to Jailed is not only a riveting read but a unique and insightful rallying cry to forestall what the author dubs "the erosion of the very fabric of our society."
We are a long way from justice and this case will have to work its way through the prosecutor, jury selection and trial, but just the contrast of this tragic incident and that of Garner's death and others is remarkable.
We must realize this is a national epidemic of homicide that must be treated. There are better ways of training police that can help.
Four cats have now been found that were missing at 125 Second Avenue. There are additional animals missing from that building and other buildings nearby.
At just under 35,000, the New York City Police Department is bar none the largest police department in the United States. It's also one of the beefiest in terms of police-to-citizen ratio.
On St. Paddy's Day, Sonny Grosso along with the Irish eyes of the late Det. Egan and his namesake Cardinal Edward Egan, who recently passed, will all be smiling down on New York.
Cops will never reform themselves. The attempts to bring them closer to us by quite literally packaging us in this same, tired concept of 'community policing' is a spin that no one seeking justice should fall for.
"In this city, people are killing each other over marijuana more so than anything that we had to deal with an '80s and '90s with heroin and cocaine," said Bratton. "We just see marijuana everywhere when we make these arrests, when we get these guns off the streets."
Members of a campaign called Safety Beyond Policing, at City Hall on Thursday denounced City Council's plan to put $97 million towards increasing the NYPD headcount by 1000 officers.