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Saturday, June 23, 2007

The Urban League’s Double Standard

posted by on June 23 at 17:36 PM

James Kelly, president of Seattle’s Urban League, made a good point in today’s Seattle Times—too bad it makes him look hypocritical.

Kelly criticized calls for SPD Chief Gil Kerlikowske’s resignation (coming from the NAACP) as premature. Kelly said he’s supporting the Chief until “all the facts” on the investigation into the Office of Professional Accountability, which investigates allegations of police misconduct, are in. (A recent report from the OPA watchdog, the Office of Professional Accountability Review Board, accused the chief of tampering in the OPA investigation of officers Greg Neubert and Michael Tietjen.)

Here’s Kelly in today’s Seattle Times: “I’ll be damned to allow any draft report, any incomplete investigation, to ruin the relationship [Kerlikowske and the Urban League] have.”

Certainly, it’s appropriate to reserve judgment until all the facts are in and the OPARB report is formally released.

Here’s the problem, though. Kerlikowske exonerated Neubert and Tietjen before the OPA was done with its investigation. If Kelly feels that it’s inappropriate to pass judgment until the OPARB investigation is complete, does he believe that Kerlikowske himself acted inappropriately by exonerating Neubert and Tietjen before the OPA had formally completed its work? Or does Kelly lower his standards when judging his friend the Chief?

Anyway, I’ll be discussing this issue and more on 710 KIRO tonight at 7pm.

RSS icon Comments


Oh crap, I'm gonna be out and will miss it. Ah well, should be good. Maybe next week!

Posted by Gomez | June 23, 2007 6:05 PM

That's not a double-standard, Josh, it's a higher standard. The report is incomplete, and he refuses to pass judgment on it until it is complete, unlike whozit from the NAACP, who sinks to Kerlikowski's level by passing judgement based on incomplete and preliminary information. How is this not obvious?

And what is it about Seattle that gives people boners for a Daryl Gates-style LAPD? Are ther lives so empty they need crooked cops to give them meaning?

Posted by croydonfacelift | June 24, 2007 1:26 PM

@2: the oparb investigation was only "incomplete" because: 1) some info needed to be redacted to protect other officers/ police practices; and 2) because the spd did not share all info with the oparb like it should have.

just like jonah said before: all of the oparb's critics say that we're not operating based on "the facts", but few of them have even bothered to learn about let alone refute what's already been made public. they day that the cops start addressing allegations instead of attacking the people who make them is a day we're not likely to see in our lifetimes unless we have new leadership to help usher in the change.

Posted by wf | June 24, 2007 2:06 PM

The Dan Savage/George Bush war on the people in Iraq continues. More suffering, more destruction, more maimed bodies, more dead children, women and men, soldier and civilian. Ahhhhhhhhh, Dan Savage will tell you, but what a glorious war it is. Freedom is on the march. We're fighting them over there so we don't have to fight 'em over here. Dan has blood on his hands as much as the most die-hard evangelical supporter of George W. bush does.

Posted by Life is good | June 24, 2007 8:32 PM

@ 2-

WF is correct. OPARB's report was only "incomplete" in that it was being run through the city attorney's office so Pete Holmes and the city didn't get sued by the police guild for "unfair labor practices."
They planned to tighten up (and probably soften) some of the language in the report but thankfully, it leaked.

I don't think anyone has found this whole process of policing the police very fulfilling, much less gotten a "boner" out of it.

Posted by Jonah S | June 24, 2007 8:45 PM

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