Well this is day number one. I've burned more hours than I care to remember posting on the sites of others but never felt I'd have the time for a blog of my own. While I'm still somewhat pressed for time, I think I can make this work.
A little about myself and where I hope this blog is heading.
I am a husband and father who, for several years now, has made a living as a Chicago police officer. Obviously it would mean career suicide if I were to reveal my true identity for the department doesn't much care for opinionated talkative types. Furthermore, my politics are considerably to the left of the mainstream and my contempt for US foreign policy won't sit well with the flag-wavers on the force either.
The inspiration for this blog was provided by the guys over at Second City Cop blog who, to put it mildly, swing decidedly to the right of the political spectrum. I guess I dreamed this up as kind of a counterweight to some of the reactionary statements that regularly appear on that site. The Chicago Police Department's image has been taking enough of a beating lately, what with a new corruption scandal seemingly emerging every few months. The public's opinion of us couldn't be lower--until they get a glimpse into the minds of some of the troglodytes on Second City Cop blog. Having said that, I do not wish to imply that everyone there is in this category, however, there are enough of them to leave the impression that they are representative of the CPD and of law enforcement generally. They are not.
This blog is not intended to be about about police work, or what boss is screwing whom. To be perfectly frank, I rarely think about the job when I'm off duty. When I take off my uniform and put it in the locker, that's where I try to leave the job. I've had a lot on my mind but almost none of it concerns the department. I'm much more concerned with the direction of my country since 9/11. It seems I've been in a foul mood for some time now, and can trace it to 19 March 2003. That of course was the day the Bush administration launched its illegal war of aggression against a third world country which posed no threat to us, nor was a party to the 9/11 attacks. What I have often found frustrating among many of my colleagues is their indifference and/or ignorance of our government's deceptions in justifying wars of aggression, the violation of both the letter and spirit of our Constitution with warrantless wiretapping of American citizens, and the "unitary executive" theory of the ultra-nationalists in charge. I've posted some of these concerns on Second City Cop blog and for my efforts received the indignant vitriol I had pretty much expected.
Slowly it began to dawn upon me that just posting comments in response to the latest outburst from the Insane Clown Posse running Second City Cop blog, was unproductive and, given the quality of discourse, uninteresting. As Gordon Geko so famously said in the movie "Wall Street", Greed is Good. I wanted more.
What I would like to do here is introduce to our rather insular police culture, an alternative interpretation of world events that hasn't been put through what American dissident Noam Chomsky has called the "doctrinal filters" of the mainstream corporate media; that august body which of course served us so well as it unquestioningly swallowed all of the White House fabrications during the lead up to aggression in Iraq. Naturally I welcome a larger audience outside of the law enforcement community, but for now my primary focus is on those of us who "walk the line" so to speak. Any potential blowback from US adventuring abroad will be intimately felt by those of us in law enforcement. I am convinced that the subsequent legislation rammed through a pliant Congress and Senate would likely entail a significant loss of rights. Given the current mood of the country, which has cooled considerably to the Bush administration's "war on terror", resistance to further erosions of our liberty could be significant. As one of my ideological heroes Ben Franklin once said, "Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither". I for one am not prepared to don jack-boots in service to a police state. How about you?
What I propose to do here is provide links to the work of independent journalists, intellectuals, and other writers who have heretofore been relegated to the margins. Their message doesn't "sell on Wall Street" so you are unlikely to hear from Chomsky, Edward S. Herman, John Pilger, Norman Finkelstein, or Alexander Cockburn on CNN and FOX. You will here.
I'll try my best to stay topical and the floor will be open for debate. I trust you will be patient with me (I still have to work full-time) as this work in progress evolves.
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