In Detroit even the Chief of Police gets robbed
As the saying goes, you just can’t make this stuff up.
Just when we Detroiters were starting to wonder how bad things were gonna get, somebody breaks into the home of the former Chief of Police James Barren. On his last day as Chief of Police. This is the man whom the majority of cops reportedly admired and respected as someone who had actually spent time as a beat cop and who therefore had a practical understanding of what the job needed. Finally, a boss they could actually respect. A cop’s cop who apparently was fired by the incoming Dave Bing mayoral administration (who had initially promised to keep the man and still says Barren did nothing wrong) for no other reason except that Barren was hired by interim Mayor Ken Cockrel.
You really can’t make this up. Here you have the poorest large city in the United States, wracked by crime, desperation, home foreclosures, joblessness, and crumbling schools – for starters – and now the Chief of Police becomes the victim of a home invasion and Detroit politics on the same damned day. If that isn’t a symbol of how bad things have gotten – and how much better things had better become – then it’s hard to imagine what scenario could possibly make the point more forcefully.
I mean, if the city’s top cop can’t even protect himself from the city – the man whose job it was to protect the rest of us – then how safe are the rest of us supposed to feel?
I’m still holding out hope (praying, actually) that we’re gonna get a whole new crew of city council members in Detroit come November (Council President Ken Cockrel is the only incumbent for whom a fairly strong case can be made that he should be retained). I’m sending this prayer to the appropriate Authority using Express Mail Delivery because this is way past urgent. We have to get as many of the right folks into the right positions of power as we possibly can right away, and we need to pull all the strings we possibly can to get it done. I’m pulling the biggest string I know how to pull.
As bad as it looks, this isn’t the the end. Folks have been betting against Detroit for decades now and we’re still here. Detroit is tougher than a lot of people realize. But even the toughest can go down if they don’t master the art of self-defense. We can’t keep just inviting any MF with a bat to beat us up ’til they get tired, then keep trying to brag that the MF couldn’t kill us. Because sooner or later the right MF will come along and will finish us off.
It isn’t the end…unless we want it to be. And we in Detroit are the only ones with the answer to that question.
SHAMELESS PLUG: Read my wife’s blog @ The “D” Spot Redeux