by Vannevar Bush
I’ve recently written about my personal Pittsburgh paradox: namely, what I love most about Pittsburgh is Burgh Culture, but the two things that chafe at me about Pittsburgh are also culturally determined.
My two major disappointments with Pittsburgh are the acceptance of police violence (and police entitlement) and the acceptance of bicycle violence.
Police violence is generally against black citizens and if you want a specific model you wouldn’t have to look any further than Jordan Miles. Police entitlement is demonstrated by the sense that we’re here to submit to the police, rather than the police are here to serve and protect the citizens.
The great majority of Pittsburgh Police are good, virtuous, brave, honorable public servants who are besmirched by the bad apples among them. Just like a lot of populations, the police don’t willingly give up any of their own, and they suffer for it. That’s a universal.
This last week saw multiple examples of tremendous progress, both in terms of advocacy, organisational intelligence and leadership. I refer to
- the reassignment of Jonathan Gromek,
- the withdrawal of charges against teacher Dennis Henderson,
- the assignment of Commander Rashall Bracknay to the Trayvon Martin protests, and
- Bracknay’s advance work and handling of the situation.
It’s so good to see that much good news, and my compliments to all involved – especially the folks behind the scenes, who carried the bulk of the load and remain unnamed.