NYPD rookies face the most thankless job in America

This vintage typwriter is our featured image.

One thought crossed my mind as I read a New York Daily News story about the latest crop of rookies to join the New York Police Department. Why the hell would anyone in his or her right mind want to do that?

Don’t get me wrong. The New York Police Department is the single greatest urban law enforcement agency anywhere on the face of the planet. Most of New York’s Finest are honest, decent, hard-working men and women who risk their lives to keep Gotham safe.

Black and white photograph of New York Police Department barriers taken by Alexandra Bogdanovic
NYPD barriers. Photo by Alexandra Bogdanovic

But that’s not to say the NYPD is a perfect agency. Far from it. There are thousands of cops on the job. So of course there are some bad apples in the bunch. Sadly, the NYPD — like all large urban police departments in the United States and elsewhere — has its share of bullies, racists and thugs. At the moment, it seems that the NYPD also has its share — or perhaps more than its share — of corruption.

To make matters worse, Police Commissioner William J. “Bill” Bratton is so busy kissing New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s butt, he doesn’t seem to care. For Bratton to tell more than 1,200 new cops who just graduated from the academy not to ensconce themselves in a “blue cocoon that isolates you from the community” is laughable.

What are they supposed to do, Bill? It’s not as if they’ll get any meaningful support from you or the mayor. All they’ll get from either one of you is a whole bunch of lip service.

Speaking of which, for de Blasio to be  at Madison Square Garden for the graduation, much less say anything to the rookies is beyond laughable. It is disgusting. After all, this is a man who has never hidden his contempt for law enforcement. In 2014, he didn’t exactly encourage New Yorkers to attack cops during anti-police protests — but he didn’t exactly discourage it, either.

Yes, it’s all well and good for de Blasio to tell the rookies about the supportive community that will embrace them. I am sure there are a few law-abiding New Yorkers who do respect and support the NYPD. But in reality,  anti-police rhetoric promoted by de Blasio, President Obama and some so-called “civil rights” groups has stoked hostility across the country.

All of this leads me back to my original question. Why would anyone in their right mind want to join the NYPD?

They’re not doing it for the money, that much is for sure. A rookie cop with the NYPD makes almost $46,000, which does not include overtime. After five-and-a-half years on the force, he or she makes almost $92,000 (not including overtime).

Now that may sound like a lot — and it is a decent amount of money for one person. It’s a great salary for one person who doesn’t have to live in or around New York City, where the cost of living is astronomical.

Having said that, de Blasio is right about one thing. He told the rookies they didn’t make “the easy choice,” but that they made the “noble choice.”

I just hope they don’t regret it.

Next in NYC – pleas for ‘knife control’

This vintage typwriter is our featured image.

Those of you who have been following this blog for any length of time know quite a bit about me by now. You know I love animals, I have a cat named Eli, I live near New York City and I volunteer at a local animal shelter. You also know I’m divorced, my ex-husband is transgender and I’ve written a book.

To be honest, that’s probably way more than you want to know. But there’s more.

In case you haven’t figured it out, I’m also tough on crime and I have a lot of friends who are cops. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I’m not a big fan of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio or New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton.

The mayor’s blatant lack of respect for law enforcement is reprehensible. His recent statements about gun control and its impact on crime are misguided at best. Bratton’s comments about the  vicious stabbings and slashings plaguing the City are both insensitive and disturbing.

Taking A Stab At It

In a recent article in the New York Daily News, Bratton happily took credit for a reduction in gun crimes, but seemed unconcerned about the use of other weapons.

Black and white photograph of New York Police Department barriers taken by Alexandra Bogdanovic
NYPD barriers. Photo by Alexandra Bogdanovic

“Slashings and stabbings aren’t going away,” Bratton told the Daily News. “But I’m confident that over time, (like) just about everything else we focus on around here, they will go down.”

Really? That’s all you have to say, commissioner? Is that supposed to be reassuring? Am I supposed to believe you? Well, here’s a newsflash for you: I don’t. In fact, I think you’re full of it. And that’s putting it mildly.

The fact of the matter is, there have been hundreds of attacks involving the use of knives, razors and similar weapons in New York City so far this year. The unpleasant truth is, it is now happening more than it has in the past. And to add insult to injury, Bratton and de Blasio just don’t seem to give a damn.

Jumping the Gun?

But perhaps I’m being a bit hasty. Maybe I should give the “dynamic duo” the benefit of the doubt. From what I’ve read, there’s now a nifty new plan in place called “Operation Cutting Edge” that’s supposed to combat the problem. Maybe it will actually work. We’ll just have to wait and see.

In the meantime, I’ve got an even better idea. Let’s implement a universal  “knife control”  policy in the Big Apple. The mayor and the rest of the “nanny state” can have fun creating and forcing all sorts of new laws on New Yorkers. These would limit the use of sharp objects including but not limited to bread knives, steak knives, butter knives, cake knives and so forth. Of course there would be an outright ban on the possession of switch blades, bowie knives, machetes and other such tools. The possession and use of all but electric razors would also be prohibited.

Of course I’m being sarcastic, but you never know. The way things are going in New York City, it might just come to that.

NYC’s top cop unfazed by random attacks

This vintage typwriter is our featured image.
Black and white photograph of New York Police Department barriers taken by Alexandra Bogdanovic
NYPD barriers. Photo by Alexandra Bogdanovic

Oh, goody. New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton doesn’t seem to think a recent bunch of random attacks on ordinary New Yorkers is cause for alarm.

I feel so much better now. I’ll hop right on the next commuter train headed into the City. Once I get there, I’ll take the subway all over the place without thinking twice, as if nothing’s happened.

Or not.

I’m old enough to remember how scary Manhattan was in the 1970s and ’80s.  When I was little my parents kept a close eye on me on the train, and one of them — usually my father — had a death-grip on my hand from the minute our feet hit the platform at Grand Central. He didn’t let go until we arrived at our final destination, or until we were on the train heading back to the relative safety of the New York City suburbs.

We walked everywhere in Manhattan back then. Or we took a cab. Riding the bus was rare and taking the subway was unheard of. Dad said it was too dangerous — and I believed him.

I am old enough to appreciate the City’s renaissance. By the turn of the 21st century, it was safe enough — and I felt brave enough — to venture into Manhattan alone. I even camped out in Rockefeller Center one night. Of course I did with a group of friends so we could have the best “seats” for an outdoor concert the next day.

After I moved back to Connecticut from Virginia in 2012, I took advantage of my proximity to the greatest city on the face of the earth. In fact I romped all over it. I even gained the confidence to take the bus and the subway where ever I wanted to go.

Now The New York Times report about  random crimes occurring throughout the Big Apple sends shivers down my spine. According to the Jan. 27 article, at least a dozen people have been targeted by men armed with “knives or razors” in recent months.

In and of itself, news of these incidents — some of which have occurred on the subway, in subway stations and on public streets — is chilling. The police commissioner’s response is, too.

“We will always have crime in the city,” Bratton told The New York Times.

That may be true, Mr. Bratton. But it is your agency’s job to do something about it.