Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Are Police Too Sensitive Or Simply Arrogant?

For some time now I have been closely following abuses of power, with special interest in instances involving our politicians and our police. Because both groups wield so much power, I believe that they need to be held to a very high stand which, unfortunately, they often fail to achieve.

I suspect that because both arenas involve a level of public trust that most of us do not enjoy, the temptation for participants in those arenas to see themselves as separate and above the public they serve must be very great; there is certainly no shortage of distressing events that attest to that hubris.

Recently, a criminal lawyer, Reid Rusonik used the term 'the banality of evil' to describe the widespread 'carding' of black males in Toronto. Rather than address the issue at the heart of the article, Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair, in a letter to the Star, expressed how he found the use of that term offensive, castigating the newspaper for allowing it to find its way into print.

Personally, I have never forgiven Blair for the pivotal role he played in the police violence that marred the 2010 G20 summit in Toronto, a role that he has consistently refused to acknowledge or show any contrition for. It is for that reason I find his umbrage at the term 'banality of evil' a bit difficult to swallow.

In a column well-worth reading in today's Star, Heather Mallick takes Blair to task over his arrogance/sensitivity.

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