Hello everyone. My name is John. I deliver pizzas in Albuquerque for a living. This often entails driving to dangerous neighborhoods, alone, often at night and with pockets full of cash. I don’t have back up. I don’t have a take home car. I make less than the average field officer.
You can say I put my life on the line every day—for pizza.
I’m working hard to pay my tuition. I’m also working hard to pay my taxes.
But it’s been hard for me to sympathize with Albuquerque Police lately as they cry over their take-home cars. Some of these guys are making much more than I do. Some of them drive Hummers, Jaguars and Cadillacs. I know. They live in my parents’ neighborhood.
Now that I read about the city reversing it’s take-home car policy, I can only wonder if police really have our best interests in their hearts.
Shouldn’t they feel the sacrifice like my family? My father was laid off from a call center. My hours were cut at work. I don’t have benefits.
I’m really getting sick and tired of them crying about this.
And if you’re a cop, and you decide to respond to this message with “But we put our lives on the line for you” and “you criticize, but you’re the first to call 911” arguments, please spare me.
Anybody else feel the same way?
"when really what they do is cite us for the same infractions they so freely indulge in, at our expense."
this is my chief issue with apd. I watch officers in cars chatting away on their cell phones and bike cops who ride on the sidewalk along central between yale and cornell (that's a business district, which means by law they need to dismount or ride in the street) and it just pisses me off. the number of officers who don't know the law they are tasked to uphold is disappointing. apologists who claim we need to shut up because these officers "protect" us are deluding themselves. officers arrive after crimes have been committed--sometimes long after (ask anyone who's called in a report about a break in or car theft) the crime is done.
the millions of dollars the city has paid out as a result of lawsuits against apd ought to give every defender of apd reason for pause. there isn't a single source that catalogs the total amount of settlements as a result of apd actions, but here's an article citing about $700,000 dollars paid out in response to suits against apd, and another referring to a case from 5 years ago resulting in a $1.3 million settlement, as well as this one about $685,000 in settlements for multiple illegal seizure of property cases. wanna drive your car home? great, stop costing taxpayers money by violating peoples' civil rights and/or engaging in misconduct. the position of power that police hold in civil society is indeed a special one. it's one that means officers should be held--and should hold themselves--to a higher standard of conduct than non-officers. disagree? well, don't become a cop.
"The thing is, the OP wasn't complaining about any of which you typed."
welcome to the internet.
how about this one? if officers want so badly to budget in the take-home program, they should refrain from engaging in behaviors which cost the city millions in settlements.
also, the assertion that officers who break the laws they are tasked to uphold are "the few crappy ones" just isn't accurate. cops on their cell phones while driving is a citywide phenomenon. bike cops who don't obey bike laws can be seen in downtown, in nob hill and in uptown (I've never actually seen a bike cop elsewhere). you really expect people to believe that's just a handful of officers? nope.
as for bitching about teachers, there's just not a comparison to be made. police officers hold a very unique position in society with comes with a set of powerful privileges and, at the very least, they should conform to standards of conduct they expect from the public, if not higher standards. and unless you can point to multiple cases where the actions of teachers cost the school district hundreds of thousands--if not millions--of dollars in settlements on an annual basis, I'm not sure you can actually start that rant. but good luck.
I'm gonna call foul on this one. That's not a fair characterization of this site as a whole, nor a fair response to hettie's echoing of a commenter's criticism of APD, which was presented with instances that supported that singular notion that police officers here freely indulge in infractions that they hold us accountable for-- It is not a "fun little rant", but a response to another poster's related issue with police conduct.
Your original comment fairly let them know that you have an opposing view and that they they might seek to put that negative energy into something more productive to affect their own life. Good on you. Similarly, and equally respectfully, others felt differently. But one is not appreciated more or less than any other in the eyes of this moderator.
Likewise, I don't think that any DCF posts in the past related to concerns about APD have shown the disrespect that you assert here. The original post and the subsequent negative comments here about APD are all raised to elicit discussion and consideration, and perhaps to let the OP know that others do in fact feel the same way as they do, as far as I can tell.
Second to lastly, hettie wasn't speaking ill of "hard working peace officers" she was actually hoping that more officers conducted themselves as such in the first place. On that point it would appear as though you two actually agree.
And finally, it just plain doesn't endear you to the DCF volunteer moderators, admins and mainly peaceful (albeit possibly testy when defending what they deem to be an unfair characterization of their points) discussion participants when you denigrate Duke City Fix by (falsely) claiming, without supporting evidence, that we would wantonly defend education whilst seeking to defame police officers. Furthermore, it's kind of absurd, frankly.
What we all desire here on Duke City Fix, is to discuss the divers issues of the place that we love, Albuquerque- even if the subject matter cannot always be positive, and to treat each other with respect, so that the casual reader doesn't feel as thought they have stumbled upon city-data.com or the comments section of some of our local news websites....
I'm sure you can appreciate that.
"albeit possibly testy when defending what they deem to be an unfair characterization of their points"
That was the point of my post. It is easy to unfairly characterize any profession. Teachers do some of the hardest work in the public sector but it is easy to unfairly lump all the good ones in with the few that are bad. Just as is done with our police officers.
"Thankfully we do have a choice to send our kids to private school."
That doesn't sound like it was what you were saying...
"Thankfully we do have a choice to send our kids to private school"
Private school is good, but I have to state that it is no answer to the problem of the US educational deficiency. As a student at UNM I have met many individuals who can't understand why we consider private schools to be so good. In their countries students in private schools are there because they cannot perform under the rigors of their public school requirements. Additionally, if all our children were to make the switch to a private school, the US would still be behind many nations in education because even private school curricula are not up to par with those nations ranked highest in education. The truth is that, excluding the few students who do value their education and strive to meet or exceed performance benchmarks, students do not want to learn or even be in school. School has become a social club for many causing the decay of this important institution. Inevitably, this will also be true in private schools considering the tenacious nature of human behavior.
As for APD, I agree with hettie completely. As a officer of the law, one holds the position of a community leader. As a leader one should never ask another to do what they are not willing to do. That means that if we are to follow various laws or ordinances, then the police also need to follow them. From the original post, considering the additional risk of damage to public property, police vehicles should be stored in an appropriate location until the officers need to use them.
In conclusion, many ideas concerning proper conduct are confounded by the human factor. As long as a human, any human, is a position of power, there will be an element of misconduct.