Friday, March 31, 2017

The blog post below has been re-posted several times in various ways. The last time in August, 2016.

The post was titled, “Consequence of Palm Beach Post’s ‘LINE OF FIRE’: More crime, fewer arrests, and an increase in the crime rate?”

Almost everyone has heard or seen something and formed their opinions on The Palm Beach Post’s “LINE OF FIRE: Bullets and badges, death on the street! It was nearly impossible to ignore the constant drumbeat by a cadre of reporters at The Palm Beach Post and their editorial board.

One particular Sunday paper stood out. A cautionary warning or a subconscious wish?
The editors chose a headline which could have also read, Leaders Urging Calm, which is what the article was about.

People and communities can and did debate the “LINE OF FIRE!” any which way. But what if the result is ultimately deputies and police officers more concerned about appearing in a news story than on doing their jobs? Or would law enforcement, even without realizing it, avoid high crime areas and high-risk situations for fear a Post reporter is around the corner with a notepad in hand?

There are communities in the City of Lake Worth that have too much crime for many reasons and they deserve protection as much as any other neighborhood. The near constant anti-Sheriff/PBSO stories in a few news media outlets and blogs, purportedly done to give more protections to citizens, may end up having the opposite effect: putting many in our poorest and most at-risk communities in even more danger.

No one is suggesting the news media be cheerleaders for Sheriff Bradshaw and PBSO. But it’s also not healthy for our community to have the media treating PBSO like an adversary. An editorial in the Post dealt with law enforcement biases; maybe it’s time the editorial board and the Post examine their own. Consider this comment left under the Post editorial in the highlighted link above:

“Bias is a two way street. . . . The media itself could be a root problem. . . . For the record remember ‘everything matters’ regardless of what anyone says when it comes to understanding.