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Friday, March 28, 2014

Where's The Video? Crucial APD Video Of Latest Fatal Police Shooting Still Unreleased, Plus: A Commentary: Pearce's Hiring Of Hate Blogger As Press Secretary Raises Character Questions; Ends With Her Resignation And: Ex-State Rep. Max Coll Dies 

So where's the video? APD says it's still being "processed." We speak of crucial lapel camera video from the scene of the city's latest fatal police shooting. It happened Tuesday night near Central and Coors. Wednesday afternoon APD released selected video from that scene, but  have yet to release the crucial video that focuses on 30 year old Alfred Redwine as he was felled by at least one police bullet.

This is video you download--not film circa 1972 that you send to the local Kodak factory to be developed and wait to be mailed back. So what's the hold up? What was Alfred Redwine doing and when was he doing ibefore he died? Where and how did he fire the gun that Chief Eden told us he fired?  
Those "processing" the video surely know. Why can't those who pay for that video--the public-- see it? Is there something amiss? We mean they got the Zapruder film out faster than this. . .

This delay in releasing information is just another in a very long line and again raises the matter of having the US Justice Department come in and oversee the department--not simply issue a list of reforms resulting from its civil rights investigation of APD. That will not remove the cultural and systemic rot that has such a grip on the agency.

In Newark NJ, Justice is expected to soon name a Federal Monitor to take over that city's police department for up to five years.  Like ours, Newark's PD has been deviled by excessive force and other troubles that local officials have been unable or unwilling to remedy.

A Federal Monitor is considered the most extreme result of a Justice Department civil rights investigation of a police force. Since the 90's it has been employed 10 times. With the back-to-back Boyd and Redwine fatal shootings, it's clear the time has come for ABQ to join that list.

The ABQ City Council, roundly criticized for being asleep at the switch during over four years of shootings and lawsuits, could vindicate itself by voting to invite the Feds to appoint a Federal Monitor for APD and even approve funds to pay the Monitor's salary. Isn't it time it did that so we can solve this problem once and for all and get ABQ moving again?

PEARCE AND THE HATE GAME

Rep. Steve Pearce
(Rep. Pearce's new press secretary resigned Friday after a storm of controversy over her appointment. This commentary was written Thursday)


Talk about tone deaf.

Southern GOP congressman Steve Pearce, fighting to prove his relevancy in an increasingly Hispanic congressional district, hires an anonymous hate/racist blogger to be his press secretary. Good move, Steve. That will sure grab them by the collar in Dona Ana County where a good showing by your Dem opponent Rocky Lara could send you back to Hobbs for good.

24 year old Rebekah Stevens, a Republican activist from Grant County, is the blogger/tweeter in question. Using anonoymity, she used the name PolitixFireball to spew slander for months on end against Democrats, journalists, bloggers, ethnic groups and anyone who disagreed with the GOP clique that is currently running the state.

She was also apparently used by other actors in the GOP hate community to channel their bile. You can read more about it here and here.

Among her Tweets that we guess she will cherish at the end of her days was this gem:

I know the Jews went up in smoke … I think you’re wrong re: the economy.

That Pearce would go ahead and hire the freshly-outed Stevens--even after acknowledging he was fully aware of her hate record--speaks to his character.  The 66 year old congressman ought to know better. And his characterization of the 24 year old Stevens, who serves as vice-chair of the Grant County GOP, as a wayward "kid" is simply absurd:

I want kids working in these offices that have passion for what they’re doing. It’s easier to train restraint than energy and enthusiasm. We always look for work attitudes and work ethics. You can’t train those things.

Mr. Pearce, the United States Congress is not a "training ground" or a reform school for the paraders of hate. At least we don't think the people of your economically struggling district see it that way. And they want adults looking after their concerns--not kids.

As for Ms. Stevens, she can demonstrate she is not a "kid" by apologizing to all the journalists, bloggers and ethnic groups she and those operating through her worked to slander and defame in a most malicious fashion.

But rather than apologize our would be Pearce spokeswoman has already refused comment on this--the first story of her embryonic congressional career. It's a career that  looks about as promising as the rhetorical sewer she presided over while operating under the cloak of anonymity.

Funny how those so brave at the keyboard when they have their masks on become so meek when the harsh light of day is shed on them. Again, it's about character, Congressman--yours and that of those you pay with tax dollars.

Where is the apology, Ms. Stevens? Or is your war on reporters, Jews, Muslims ("blood lust conquerors") and Obama--whom you compare to Hitler--now part of your congressional portfolio?

Are we going to see this kind of language deployed by Stevens against Pearce's Hispanic opponent?

Pearce is 66 and seemingly robust, but this decision makes him appear to be doddering. Desiring to hire a purveyor of such venom is the first sign that he may be faltering. The second is not recognizing that his political opponents can and should turn the hate record of his now close aide against him in TV ads.

Geez, Steve, didn't your momma tell you that when you lie down with pigs, all you ever get is dirty?

MAX COLL

Word came to us late Thursday of the passing of former State Rep. Max Coll. He died from complications from a stroke. Coll, 82, was one of the more important legislators in state history. The legendary Santa Fe political reporter Larry Calloway penned an appreciation of Coll upon his retirement from the Legislature in 2004.

Rep. Max Coll, D-Santa Fe, defined the legislature, representing the people of his district without a hint of personal gain and serving the people of the state without a suspicion personal ambition for higher office. He was powerful. Chairman of the House Appropriations and Finance Committee. Key member of the Legislative Finance Committee. Negotiator in the big final annual appropriations conference committee.

Coll began as a Republican representing Roswell in the Constitutional Convention of 1969, which led to his election to the House. He took leave in about 1973, went to law school, made some big changes in his family life, stopped drinking and moved to Santa Fe, where he has represented House Dist. 47 for 24 years, the first term as a Republican. He switched to Democrat, joined the liberal House coalition, and was reelected easily. Hey, parties should not mean that much to citizen legislators, right? Max never did have a close election, D or R. Even the year when his enemies launched a brutal and well funded attack campaign, he won by a ton. Suddenly, at age 72, a few days before election filing day, he announced his retirement and just as fast, resigned.

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