I’ve come to accept two things that will not change in my lifetime. First, bias and hate have been redefined by self-important people in the entertainment industry, and second, politics will be included as part of all narratives in our country.
As a retired detective commander in the N.Y.P.D., and a co-founder of a not-for-profit organization dedicated to domestic, dating and relationship violence, I’ve put my time and money where my words and actions are. I’ve personally witnessed violence against strangers and family members alike. I’ve seen the aftermath of pain.
In response to Michael Ian Black’s editorial, ‘America’s Boys are Broken,’ published in The New York Times, I say it is not that the boys are broken…their parents are. This includes Mr. Black. Sadness is a natural part of life. People will experience pain in their lives, and sadness is a healthy natural response. When you start to treat sadness like cancer, you basically do more harm than good.
As for the recent school shooting, it is horrible and tragic. However, your approach to the tragedy is typical of someone who needs to remain in the entertainment club rather than be honest (sorry for using the “H’ word). Tragedies happen. This one could have been avoided, not by eliminating the weapons, but by eliminating the incompetence of the F.B.I. You have to love accountants and lawyers with guns. They are afraid to act especially against someone with an ethnic surname, like the shooter. To their credit the majority of them have low B.M.I. scores. So they have something going for them.
What needs to be done is rather simple. Here’s the answer:
Much of the security field is made up of Barney Fife like characters who have received their pensions from their respective police departments. Their security job is just that, a job, not a profession. In New York, a security guard must attend an annual training class once their license is secured. The training doesn’t change for the most part. The instructor may use a recent tragedy as an example during the instruction, but very few if any lessons are learned. Training must be replaced by teaching. Curriculums must be modernized and be increased from 8 hours annually to 32 hours.
As part of the group you have labeled ‘alt-right,’ it may surprise you that I disagree with President Trump on his proposal to arm teachers in schools. Instead, security departments must have organizational structure. The director, assistant director and supervisors (one per 8-hour tour and two covering supervisors for when vacations and days off are granted) should have armed-guard status. The guns should be concealed and not extensively covered by the media. The guards should be unarmed but diligent. For colleges and universities who have police department status, they should remain their current status.
Incompetence is still crippling security and police departments. Higher standards are needed. This will of course deal a blow to your liberal agenda by having a one-of-each structure. However, I think you will agree that being saved by a conservative is better than dying by the incompetence of a liberal (again, I think you will agree).
Teaching staff, administration and leadership on safety is imperative. The challenge of course will be the ignorance of many teachers, who have studied themselves stupid into thinking security guards are manly uneducated, racist, and abusive people who cannot possibly understand the challenges gays and people of color have endured.
Lastly, parenting including honesty about security and police – community relationships should be spoken about. Of the countless and I mean countless interactions security and police officials have with civilians, the vast majority are positive. Also, speaking to your child about the high rate of police divorce, alcoholism, and suicide is essential to understanding the protective dynamic.
I wish your child well. Try not to make him a victim of too many things before he becomes a man. Oh, and I couldn’t care less if someone is gay but, God, you do. Keep producing drivel like your recent editorial and you’ll never be disinvited to your talentless late night host segments.
John Amodeo is a retired N.Y.P.D detective commander and a graduate of the F.B.I. National Academy. He is a co-founder of Together As One, Inc. (D/B/A The Partner Project) a not-for-profit 501(c)3 charity organization that works to end the silence associated with relationship, domestic and dating violence through education, training, research and responsible action.