Tuesday, April 01, 2008

The problem with racist cops

-- by Dave

We've discussed previously the red flags that go up whenever law-enforcement officials are involved in any kind of racist organizations.

Recent news reports about two cops in Philly, both members of an elite squad, who were found with racist stickers in their locker were especially disturbing:
Two racist stickers were found inside Schweizer's locker. One sticker read: "White Power." The other depicted a cartoon of a man, half as an officer in uniform and half as a Klansman, with the words "Blue By Day — White By Night."

Ramsey described the discipline as harsh but just, and said he stopped short of firing the officers because they "had no histories that would indicate that they engaged in any racist type of activities."

Schweizer's attorney, Allan J. Sagot, maintained that his client was the victim of a practical joke played by another officer, who affixed the stickers to the outside of Schweizer's locker. Once he saw the stickers, Schweizer pulled them off his locker and stuck them inside, Sagot said.

An Internal Affairs Bureau investigation concluded that Dial created the stickers and put them on Schweizer's locker in the narcotics strike force headquarters in the city's Bridesburg section, Ramsey said.

The story notes (as does an An AP story about the cops) that the men weren't fired because they hadn't any prior history suggesting racist activity -- which seems reasonable enough, I suppose.

But there really can't be any tolerance at all for this kind of stuff within law enforcement, because it's essential for their credibility with the public that racist cops are immediately expelled.

And especially in Philly, which still is living with the legacy of Frank Rizzo.

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