Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Which side are they on?

Rambix previously posted here and here on the manufactured controversy surrounding the Medal of Valor awarded to Minneapolis Police Officer Dan May (now Sgt. May) for putting his life on the line to stop an armed gangster in 1990.

Black community "activists" support the gangster.

Rambix also noted how Minneapolis Mayor (Mr. Crime Control) R.T. Ryback and Police Chief McManus appear intent on ceding authority for decisions on awarding medals to ne'er-do-wells Spike Moss and Ron Edwards of the Community Relations Council.

The Red Star reports to day that the "controversy" is growing: "Outcry over officer's medal grows".

Taking an unusual public stance, the Minneapolis Urban League Tuesday sent a critical letter to Mayor R.T. Rybak and Police Chief Bill McManus over the medal given to a police officer in connection with the fatal shooting of teenager Tycel Nelson in 1990.

Community activist Spike Moss also met with Rybak's spokesman and asked that the mayor apologize to the community for the department's action. And Ron Edwards, a member of the Police Community Relations Council who spoke on behalf of Nelson's family, issued a letter to Rybak and McManus saying they should start the healing process by asking Sgt. Dan May to return his Medal of Valor.
There is no question the medal was earned, although it should have been awarded in a timely manner. Chief John Laux at the time declined to nominate Officer May for the award in order to avoid igniting racial tensions. No explanation has been offered as to why the good people of the black community would be offended by an officer recognized for defending his own life against an armed gangster. The criminal sealed his own fate when he brandished the gun.

The police brass have not stood tall on this matter:

Assistant Chief Tim Dolan said Tuesday that McManus asked May after he received his medal last week whether he would consider returning it. May didn't answer, Dolan said. McManus has said he wouldn't have approved the medal.
The police brass and the mayor's office are demonstrating to officers that they won't stand behind them when the going gets tough. The award was properly reviewed and approved by the appropriate committee and awarded in a low-profile ceremony. When asked to return the medal, Sgt. May's response should be: "pound sand".