The National Black Police Association (NBPA) is pushing back on the questionable remarks of US Attorney General William Barr about communities of color while giving a speech at the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing, Wednesday, December 3rd. Barr – who was once considered an image of integrity but has now been largely viewed as a mere stooge of an embattled president – said that if some communities don’t begin showing more respect to law enforcement, then they could potentially not be protected by police officers.
“But I think today, American people have to focus on something else, which is the sacrifice and the service that is given by our law enforcement officers,” U.S. Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday, December 3rd, at the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing. “And they have to start showing, more than they do, the respect and support that law enforcement deserves ― and if communities don’t give that support and respect, they might find themselves without the police protection they need.”
The National Black Police Association would like for this false narrative that the Black community does not respect the police to stop.
“After I read the story, I felt the horror as well. I also felt dismayed, disappointment, frustration, and anger, that a leader in the criminal justice system would make such an irresponsible statement,” Sonia Y.W. Pruitt, National Chairwoman of The National Black Police Association (NBPA) said Thursday, December 5th. “I then realized that the words were deliberate and purposeful, meant to deliver an edict to police officers that they can choose to ignore the needs of a community, based on whether they feel “appreciated” or not, and that the veiled inference was that those communities from which police services would be withheld would be Black.”
In a statement addressing Barr’s questionable remarks, NABP National Chairwoman Pruitt points out that the beauty of this country is that all citizens, regardless of race, gender, background, or political affiliation, have the freedom to like, dislike, or criticize what we choose. We all have a right, in particular, to criticize those services that are funded by our hard-earned dollars that includes police services.
“It is police abuse that is being complained about, and it should be,” Chairwoman Pruitt said. “We would like for police brutality and corruption to be acknowledged when it occurs, and for police unions to stop protecting those officers who conduct themselves unethically and/or criminally, for that is what will build trust and legitimacy in all of our communities, and what will build “respectful” relationships. We would like for police officers to remember the oath we all swore to and carry forth our police missions, visions, and principles with fairness and equity—I am sure we would be hardpressed to find an oath that said we were only to be of outstanding service if the person we are serving likes or respects us.”
Black Westchester who has often criticized Black Leadership for not speaking up salutes Chairwoman Pruitt for proving she is more interested in purpose than position and is using that position to speak up against these questionable remarks.
Attorney General Wiliams Barr’s obsequious performance in the Mueller rollout already sullied his reputation, leaving many asking is he the country’s top lawman or Donald Trump’s personal lawyer/ stooge? Threatening communities of color, that we could “find themselves without the police protection they need,” simply for daring to speak up for the way our communities are being policed is further example of the white supremacist attitude that has run rampant since Trump has taken office among his supporters. Coming out of the mouth of the country’s top cop only further greenlights a culture of police criminality, the killing of unarmed Black Men by police, police abuse and corruption that is a reality of the police occupation of our communities, furthering the tensions in police/community relations. Another reason this statement pushing back on this attitude of systematic racism from the nation’s top cop by the NABP is so important (see full statement below).
About the NABP – The National Black Police Association (NBPA) is a national organization comprised of sub-regional African American Police Associations whom are dedicated to promoting justice, fairness, and effectiveness in law enforcement. The NBPA has several chartered organizations throughout the United States and has associate members abroad, in Canada, Bermuda, and the United Kingdom. The core focus of NBPA centers upon Law Enforcement issues, with a strong emphasis on the effects of these issues on the community. The NBPA serves as an advocate forum for officers of color and establishes a national network of professional development and training for all police officers and those parties interested in law enforcement. For more information check their website.