Patterico's Pontifications


Sharon Papa Responds

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:40 pm

Yesterday I published an e-mail exchange between the wife of an LAPD SWAT officer and LAPD Assistant Chief Sharon Papa. The wife had written Assistant Chief Papa about her concern that “there are actions being taken to lower the hiring standard for getting into SWAT.” Assistant Chief Papa replied: “I am not aware of any actions being taken to lower the standards for getting into SWAT.” As I detailed in my post, the standards have been lowered, and it would seem that Assistant Chief Papa must have been aware of that fact.

I sent Assistant Chief Papa a link to my post, and asked her if she could reconcile her e-mail with the recent reporting about the lowered standards.

She has responded. Here is her reply in full:


I appreciate your inquiry. You may or may not be aware that SWAT does not report through my chain of command. Therefore, I referred the message received to Operations since they make decisions daily that impact Metropolitan Division. I have no idea what the author of the note is specifically referring to and do not care to speculate. Plenty of that seems to be happening by people who have bits and pieces of information and have jumped to conclusions before having all of the facts.

I invite you and your readers to attend the Police Commission meeting when a comprehensive presentation will be made. The Board of Inquiry process will be explained along with an overview of the recommendations made to the Chief of Police. The status of each recommendation will be discussed by the Commanding Officers of Metropolitan Division. I believe the presentation will clarify many questions that you and others may have.

I recommend that you monitor upcoming Commission agendas for this item. We anticipate moving forward in the next few weeks. I do not yet have a specific date.

Thank you for the opportunity to respond to your inquiry.

Sharon Papa

Make of that what you will.

UPDATE: You know, I’ll probably send a follow-up e-mail seeking clarification, because I can’t even tell what this means.

Tom Bethell: We Need a Debate on Race

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 7:30 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Tom Bethell writing in the American Spectator agrees that America needs a debate about race. Here are some of the points he wants to discuss:

>> McCain would be toast if he had a pastor like Wright but Obama didn’t even have to disassociate himself from Wright.

>> Some liberals agree with Wright’s view of America.

>> There is a double standard among blacks on the subject of race because light-skinned blacks sometimes discriminate against dark-skinned blacks.

>> Anti-white discrimination is as bad as anti-black discrimination, but it has been legal in America since the Bakke decision 30 years ago.

>> Blacks and white liberals are invested in the “current system of affirmative action and racial preferences.”

I think Chief Justice John Roberts was right when he said “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.” However, Barack Obama, Jeremiah Wright, and their supporters apparently believe that approach is too simplistic.

So be it, but if we’re going to have a debate about race then we need to discuss the issues raised by Tom Bethell as well as those raised by Barack Obama. In other words, this shouldn’t be a debate solely about how blacks feel about race and what Americans can do to make blacks feel included. It should also be about what all Americans can do to include blacks, Hispanics, Asians, native Americans, whites, and everyone.

Some people seem to think Barack Obama has a cure for racial problems, almost as if he is the vaccine that can wipe away the disease of racism. He does not have the cure; No one person does. The cure for racism is within each of us, assisted by a legal system applied equally to all.


Jeremiah Wright Will Speak in Houston Church

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 4:29 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Houston Chronicle reports that Chicago Rev. Jeremiah Wright will give three sermons at a Houston church next week:

“Just weeks after publicity over his controversial sermons rocked Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright will preach three guest sermons at Houston’s Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church.

Wright, who until February was minister of Obama’s church, Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ, will preach Sunday, March 30.

Wheeler pastor, the Rev. Marcus Cosby, could not be reached for comment Friday. A spokesman for the church said Wright, who has offered sermons at Wheeler annually for the past 15 years, had been scheduled as part of the church’s regular speaker’s program.
Cosby is among African-American clergymen who are advising Obama on religious matters.”

That should be standing room only.


Eliot Spitzer Starts Therapy

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 11:51 am

[Guest post by DRJ]

The New York Post reports Eliot Spitzer has started therapy and will “explore whether he has an addiction to sex.”



State Department: Candidates’ Passport Files were Breached

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 11:02 am

[Guest post by DRJ]

After reports yesterday that Senator Obama’s passport file was accessed without authoritization by State Department contract workers, the New York Times reports today that all three major Presidential candidates’ files were breached within the past year:

“The State Department said on Friday that it was investigating several incidents in which the passport files of all three presidential contenders were improperly accessed by employees.

The breaches involved electronic files that contained personal information about Senators Barack Obama, Hillary Rodham Clinton and John McCain. A State Department spokesman declined to say what was in those files, but said they likely contained biographical information and passport applications.”

State Department Secretary Condoleeza Rice apologized to Senator Obama yesterday.

State Department management was not aware of a breach, apparently because lower level employees did not report them up the line. Instead, management learned about the breaches after receiving inquiries from a reporter.


Must-Read of the Day

Filed under: Crime,General — Patterico @ 12:01 am

An ER doctor writes about operating on a 12-year-old victim of a gunshot wound:

I just finished sewing up a dead boy.

I pronounced him dead at 10:34 p.m. Sunday. It’s now 11:27 p.m. I know I won’t be able to get to sleep for a long time. I feel like I shouldn’t.

. . . .

The boy’s family is brought in while I am bathed in his blood, as “studies have shown” that this is better for everyone involved, to be present as the end nears. I scramble for a way to just stop the bleeding. I just want it to stop. It’s spilling over my hands on to the gurney. His mother is begging me to do what I can. I know I can’t do anything. She tells me to take her heart, and give it to him. I know that’s not possible, and she knows that’s not possible, but she could not be more serious. The first ER doc is sitting alongside the mom, gently telling her that we’ve done everything we can do. His mother looks at me. My hands are still in the boy’s chest, trying to do something, anything. In her eyes, I see a soul that I am about to crush with a little nod of my head. I do so.

The piece is slightly marred a couple of brief and wholly unnecessary asides about gun control and the war. A good editor would have removed them; I recommend you simply ignore them. The rest of the piece is moving and jarring and powerful.

Read it all.

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