During a press conference, Wednesday morning, two Republican legislators and their allies within the New York City Police Department unveiled a bombshell new piece of legislation that would designate water attacks on the police as a felony punishable by up to four years in prison.
“The measure would make it a Class E felony to throw or spray water, or any other substance, against an on-duty police or peace officer. The charge would be punishable by up to 1 to 4 years in prison,” local station WABC reported late Tuesday evening.
“What we are witnessing in New York City is disgraceful,” New York state Assemblyman Michael LiPetri, one of the two Republicans responsible for this legislation, said in a statement at the time.
“A culture of blatant disrespect for law enforcement has been fostered and encouraged simply for political gain which has resulted in such despicable acts of hate becoming acceptable in our communities. New York State must send a message that this will not be tolerated and I am confident that this bill provides law enforcement the tools they need to properly react.”
Both LiPetri and his partner, fellow Assemblyman Michael Reilly, echoed this sentiment during the presser Wednesday, except this time they were far more blunt in assessing the true root of the problem: Democrat politicians like New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
“What’s harsh is the fact that the leader of this great city has routinely used his platform and now the national stage to burn rather than build bridges between the community and law enforcement,” Reilly said during the presser.
True. During the first round of 2020 Democrat presidential primary debates last month, the mayor threw the NYPD under the bus by portraying them as racist.
“This is disgraceful,” Reilly continued. “And now I speak to you directly, Mayor Bill de Blasio. I challenge you tonight to use your national platform at a Democrat presidential debate to unequivocally condemn these attacks and proclaim your full support and respect for the sacrifice of our officers — the sacrifice they make each day in the city and across our state to keep our families safe, to keep your families safe. Talk is cheap. Actions speak louder than words.”
Over the past couple of weeks, the city has been rocked by an endless spate of water attacks. Each attack has involved young thugs dousing on-duty officers with buckets of water. In some cases, these attacks have destroyed the officers’ electronic equipment, including cell phones and laptops. Yet thanks to the city’s lax laws, a number of suspects have already been released from jail without bail.
Speaking next, LiPetri also aimed his anger at de Blasio.
“[T]he rhetoric coming out of members who sit in their room right behind us and from the mayor’s office — they all talk about due process when it’s convenient for them, when it’s a punchline. … That’s the problem!” he fumed.
“That’s what led us to where we are today. Instead of them standing up and saying let’s see where the facts lead, let’s see what’s going on, let an investigation take its course, they throw out some one-liners in search of their next office. That’s the problem. De Blasio was elected to lead a city, not lead a moment. It’s time we had some real leadership in city hall.”
Next to speak was Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association of the City of New York president Pat Lynch. What’s telling is that even he couldn’t resist taking shots at the mayor.
“If we go back to 2014,” he began, referencing the year that the Ferguson Effect began to play out and two on-duty police officers were killed. “I went into this building and begged this mayor to tone down the rhetoric on the street, that you can smell it at every job, that you can feel it from the folks that you’re dealing with, that the street is uneasy, and that the street is turning against New York City police officers, and we begged that the temperature be brought down.”
“They didn’t heed our warning, and two New York City police officers were killed. And the city put their head down in sadness and said this can’t happen again. Well, we feel that same temperature on the street,and we’re seeing it like we did in 2014.”
And what is de Blasio doing about it? Kvetching about the police on national television:
Like renowned conservative commentator Michelle Malkin noted in a column last week, “The de Blasios paint a grim picture of an America where racist cops lurk on every corner, laying in wait to execute innocent black men. Meanwhile, on Planet Reality, men and women in blue give their lives to protect and service on increasingly lawless streets.”
And further meanwhile, last weekend another NYC police officer died by suicide.
“Another NYPD officer has taken his own life — the fifth to do so in just two months, the NYPD confirmed Saturday night,” local radio station WINS has Saturday. “He is the seventh member of the department to die by suicide this year, according to police.”
“The tragic news today that another member of the NYPD has been lost to suicide breaks our hearts, and is a deep sorrow felt by all of New York City,” NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill reportedly said in a statement. “To every member of the NYPD, please know this: it is okay to feel vulnerable.”
“It is okay if you are facing struggles. And it is okay to seek help from others. You may not know this, and it may be hard to imagine, but you are not out there all by yourself. More people than you know, who wear the same uniform as you do, share the same doubts and fears and struggles that you do. Seeking help is strength. Talking about your problems is strength. Acknowledging you need a place to turn is strength.”
In fairness to de Blasio, he issued his own statement on the matter:
Tonight our city mourns at the news that we’ve lost another NYPD officer to suicide. These tragedies cannot continue. We cannot lose any more of our officers. We cannot leave parents, spouses and children at home waiting for loved ones who will not return. pic.twitter.com/CM1vygcwJ6
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) July 28, 2019
I want to say as loudly and clearly as I can: it is okay to ask for help. If you or a loved one is in need: ask. Your whole city stands in support of you ready to answer the call. If you or someone you know is in need of support, please reach out. pic.twitter.com/7cFh3WdV3j
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) July 28, 2019
However, it’s unclear what actions, if any, he intends to take.
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