Why I Support the Board of Police Commissioners

The battle over the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners is coming to a head in Jefferson City.  Others (see www.24thstate. com)  have documented the board’s odd history and surprising success. I’ve pointed out that the Constitution is silent on the matter. With legislation coming to a vote, I’ll state my personal position flat out.

I believe that abolishing the Board would be a setback, not just for St. Louis Police Officers, not just for the city of St. Louis, but for entire region. 

First, St. Louis City government is a wreck.  Decades of one-party rule has driven away people and businesses.  The St. Louis Public Schools had to be seized by  the state because of perpetual incompetence.  The last thing this city needs is a police department as corrupt and ineffective as the rest of City Hall.

Second, the most prominent opponents of the board, like Rep. Jamila Nasheed, represent the most radical elements of Missouri politics.  Nasheed is closely allied with the New Black Panther Party

Third, the St. Louis Police Department, despite its many challenges, has been and remains one of the premier metropolitan forces in the country.  That’s due in part to the oversight from the governor-appointed board.  Without that board, every police officer will work at the pleasure of the mayor of St. Louis. 

Fourth, I question the measures taken to get this legislation through the Missouri House.  I don’t have anything against Rex Sinquefield, but I would like to know what his end-game is.  Sinquefield, who opposes the state-appointed board, invested $200,000 in Steve Tilley’s uncontested race for the Missouri House.  Tilley subsequently used his position as speaker to drive this legislation through. 

Tilley’s extraordinary efforts include appointing a radical member of the House as chairwoman of the Urban Affairs committee, assigning HB71—the bill to abolish the Board of Police Commissioners—to that committee, and, regrettably, to resort to smearing opponents of his legislation as race-baiters.  (I will discuss this more in a later post.)

Advertisements

Published by: bhennessy

Bill Hennessy is co-founder of St. Louis Tea Party Coalition, expert in persuasive design and marketing, and author of three books, including The Conservative Manifesto (1993) and Zen Conservatism (2009)

Categories Latest2 Comments

2 thoughts on “Why I Support the Board of Police Commissioners”

  1. I am in agreement with you Bill. The city of St Louis is not in any way ready to take control of a department such as the Police Department. The already chronicled news of St Louis corruption in City Hall should tell any St Louisan they are not ready to handle the Police Department without a Board of Police Commissioners.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s