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by Peter Moskos

March 26, 2016

Bratton on Cruz

Bill Bratton in the Daily News:
There seems to be a widespread belief among certain members of the political class that protecting the country against terrorism is a matter of ideology. According to them, the strong leaders in this area are the ones who are willing to insult Muslims, advocate torture, and engage in various other provocations. They claim that other leaders are paralyzed by political correctness and that they alone have the ideological fortitude to guard against the terrorist threat.
Recently, Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz called for police to “patrol and secure Muslim communities before they become radicalized.” We already patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods, the same way we patrol and secure other neighborhoods.
In New York City, we protect all communities from crime and terrorism — yes, Muslim communities too — because like us, they are Americans who own businesses, work hard, pay taxes and dream of a better life for their children. Over 900 of them work in my police department as police officers, many of them in counterterrorism and intelligence. Many of them have served in the military and fought for their country.
For what it's worth, I wrote this a few years ago about the problems of "Demographics Unit" 2006 report.


john mosby said...

Thanks, Prof. Seeing the whole quote helps. There is probably more agreement than disagreement here, but each side feels the need to posture. And of course Bratton must just love having to publicly disavow the techniques that worked so well for him.

If Cruz had just put a little bit of window dressing on his statement, there would be no disagreement. Something like "we need a presence of society and government in the neighborhoods where young men live who are most likely to be radicalized. We need to convince their communities that bringing at-risk boys to the attention of the authorities is not an automatic ticket to Gitmo. We'll treat you like an individual, and if you're just peering down the road to radicalism, we'll help you get on the right path. But if you are actively plotting or giving aid/comfort to terror, the full force of all government instruments will be brought to bear on you."

I don't think Bratton would disagree with that.


Moskos said...

But of course Ted Cruz would never say that, probably because that's not what he meant. He's good with words and I read what he says as occupation of enemy territory.

Moskos said...

From NYPD tweet: "Patrol & secure was a subtext for occupy & intimidate," Dep. Commissioner of Intel & @NYPDCT on @FaceTheNation. http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/nypd-official-police-should-reject-calls-to-occupy-or-intimidate-muslim-communities/


john mosby said...

Yeah, the NYPD are making way too many denials on this. Why? How many possible Muslim votes are there in NYC? Or is the mayor worried that the other groups might say "hey, great idea," unless officials keep repeating what a bad idea it is? Just really weird how visceral the reaction is from people who don't have a dog in the GOP primary fight...


Moskos said...

But they do have a dog in the NYPD and the city's safety. Bratton's response doesn't surprise me. He doesn't take hits without hitting back. This is his six op-ed in the Daily News.

Talk like Cruz's makes the city less safe. So I think you're right to pick up on the visceral: "On my worst day I think I know a little but more about terrorist activities in New York City then Mr. Cruz on his best day."

Maybe it's just electioneering to the GOP. But this issue is both real and political in NYC. There are a lot of Muslims in NYC. More than in Texas. So yeah, we care.

Bratton spends a lot of time on this. And then Cruz opens his trap with counterproductive hate filled nonsense? Yeah, as Bratton said, "My advice to Mr. Cruz is to shut up."