Over the past few months, public officials across the country have taken drastic steps that demonstrate their lack of respect for the very people who work to keep their cities safe day in and day out.
Let’s take a closer look at what’s happening and what we can all do to stand up for our fellow officers.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has a history of disrespecting the city’s police force. She’s cut overtime for officers at precisely the time it’s most needed as violence rages throughout the city.
She even went as far as saying, “it feels like we’re losing the streets” during a weekend when 40 people were shot and nine people died. President Trump has frequently cited the problems with Chicago’s violence, and Lightfoot’s stance toward police has not made things any better.
More recently, Lightfoot blamed ICE when an illegal immigrant raped a 3-year-old girl in a McDonald’s bathroom.
Christopher Puente, a 34-year-old from Mexico, has a long history of crime and run-ins with ICE. He was arrested for theft in June 2019 and should have been placed on a detainer list to be deported back to Mexico.
However, the “sanctuary” status in Illinois makes it difficult for ICE to deport illegal immigrants, so Puente was one of more than 1,000 immigrants who remained in the Chicago area last year. While the convicted criminal remained in the U.S., he committed the rape in the McDonald’s.
Rather than making it easier for ICE to do its job, Lightfoot blamed the agency for what happened and accused it of not doing its job.
“If ICE is complaining, then they should do their job better,” Lightfoot told reporters, according to WLS.
Big cities are not the only places where disrespect for police is on the rise. A recent incident in Rochester, New York shows that mid-size cities and towns face the same problems when it comes to judges and elected officials working to undermine the hard work that police officers do day in and day out.
A judge in Rochester recently reduced bail for a 20-year-old man accused of repeatedly stabbing a police officer in the face with a five-inch blade. Rochester Police Officer Brian Cala sustained a stab wound to his cheek after responding to an altercation involving Jamal Dima at his home in Rochester.
Dima was reportedly under the influence of the drug K2 when he attacked Cala, who was able to draw his weapon and respond. He was charged with aggravated assault and criminal mischief.
His bail was originally set at $75,000 but later dropped to $25,000 on March 5. He pleaded not guilty. and his trial is set to begin in August.
Rochester’s police force made a strong showing to support Cala at Dima’s arraignment, with one local news article describing the courtroom as a “wave of blue.”
“Officer Cala is doing great, all things considered. It was a vicious assault that took place on Sunday, but he’s in great spirits, he has a lot of support from the men and women of the police department, as well as the outside agencies,” Rochester Police Department Captain Ray Dearcop told Spectrum News.
What To Do
Given the increasing attacks on police from judges and elected officials, our fellow officers need our support now more than ever.
Increasing scrutiny and unfair treatment from the politicians, courts, and the media make it difficult for police to maintain the level of public support needed to do their jobs day in and day out. Let’s take a closer look at the issue of respect for police and why it matters now more than ever. Read more here.