A Weimar-y Vibe

I notice that the ever-repulsive Niall O’Dowd, editor of the Irish Voice empire, was one of the first out of the traps to attack NY Mayor Bill de Blasio in the wake of the killing of two NYPD cops in Brooklyn at the hands of an evidently deranged gunman.

De Blasio’s crime, in O’Dowd’s eyes, was to give voice, albeit a very mild voice, to the growing concern aroused by the almost casual killing recently of Black Americans by police forces in Ferguson, Missouri; Staten Island, NY and Cleveland, Ohio.

De Blasio is married to an African-American and has a teenage son of mixed race,  so when it comes to experience of police antagonism towards racial minorities Hizzonor knows a little of what he speaks!

But this counts for nought as far as Mr O’Dowd is concerned. The NYPD is, after all, an Irish-American redoubt so its members can do no wrong!

It wouldn’t be so bad if the Irish Voice supremo was consistent in his attitude towards policing and Irish policemen. But he is not. Not too long ago the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) was, in his view, so unacceptably bigoted that only its disbandment could cure the disease.

Yet the RUC was peopled by Irishmen too. So why support Irish policemen in New York but not in Belfast. Could it have been because the guys in Belfast were Protestants in the main but those Irish cops who patrol Staten Island are Catholic? Could the Irish Voice editor be just a little bigoted himself? Surely not!

Or is he saying that it’s wrong for police to come heavy with White Irish Catholics but no-one should complain when Black African-Americans are on the receiving end?

Anyway here is an excellent piece by Corey Robin, who places the De Blasio row and the reaction of the NYPD – and implicitly Mr O’Dowd as well – in proper context.

Corey Robin

If you haven’t been following the situation in New York City since Saturday, things are getting tense.

On Saturday, a gunman shot and killed two police officers at close range in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn.

The murders come on the heels of weeks of protest in New York (and elsewhere) against the rampant lawlessness and brutality of the police.

Instantly, the police and their defenders moved into high gear, blaming the murders on the protesters; NYC Mayor Bill De Blasio, who had been gesturing toward the need for police reform; and US Attorney General Eric Holder. Many have called for the mayor’s resignation.

The police union and its head, Patrick Lynch, were the most forthright:

“There is blood on many hands, from those that incited violence under the guise of protest to try to tear down what police officers did every day,” Mr. Lynch…

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