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Police Misconduct

Friday’s Headlines: Stick a Fork in This Mayor, He’s Done Edition

12:48 AM EDT on June 5, 2020

Finally, the Brooklyn Bridge stands for something. Photo: Gersh Kuntzman

The cops are out of control and the mayor is choosing not to see it.

But we believe in the truth, so here's a small sampling of some of the brutality captured on camera last night:

Here's a squadron of cops arresting a food delivery worker (who is an "essential" worker under curfew rules — or any time, really). Listen to the terror in his voice as he is ignored by police, who will confiscate his livelihood, his bike:

(The mayor later condemned that one in a tone-deaf tweet.)

Here's former Streetsblog intern Ben Verde being chased by police in Williamsburg. Watch people get beaten as they are taken into custody by abusive cops:

Here's Jake Offenhartz of Gothamist (who has been killing it this week) with video of an HRA janitor being arrested:

Here's another post from The Bronx featuring an officer in a riot suit — dirt bike helmet and the kind of body armor that the Post fetishizes — point out a protester, prompting a fellow officer (smiling, of course) to go on a rampage:

Here's a Post story featuring a video of cops breaking up a peaceful protest.

These are cops beating up a man with a bicycle in Midtown on Wednesday, a video that the mayor said on Thursday that he hadn't seen:

No wonder everyone turned his back on Mayor de Blasio (NY Post, NY Times) when he tried to speak at yesterday's memorial for George Floyd on Cadman Plaza (a gesture all the more ironic because the cops did it to the mayor early in his first term when they were briefly, petulantly mad at him). No wonder the New York Times posted an editorial with the headline, "Mayor de Blasio, open your eyes. The police are out of control."

"Mr. de Blasio appears unwilling to confront the reality that the department is failing to meet the demands of this moment," the Paper of Record wrote for all posterity. "Officers have been allowed to behave in a manner that disgraces their mission to protect and serve, and violates the public trust. The mayor is allowing that to happen." (The headline in amNY also said it all: "De Blasio under fire from all sides after NYPD handling of George Floyd protests.)

Yes, this mayor is done. Sure, the calendar says he's in office for another year and a half, but he's done. Hundreds of current and former staffers have voted no confidence — and so has Doug Gordon:

The violence by cops is not limited to New York City. Here's a man being shoved so forcefully by Buffalo police officers that he falls and cracks his skull until he bleeds:

In other news:

    • Multiple outlets covered the arrest of the crazy man with the Wolverine blade glove who tried to kill Black Lives Matter protesters in Queens. (NYDN, Streetsblog)
    • And many outlets also covered the MTA's demand that the de Blasio administration start building busways again. (NYDN, Streetsblog)
    • Lawmakers are pushing bills in Albany to rein in the police. (NY Post)
    • Eater covered the mayor's open streets for restaurant proposal, but Streetsblog was more critical.
    • And, finally, some good news: Bullying Queens Community Board 2 Chairwoman Denise Keehan-Smith has been ousted from her post because of a discrimination complaint against her, as the Queens Eagle reported earlier — although the pro-Keehan-Smith Sunnyside Post attributed her ouster to her opposition of bike lanes. (Maybe Christian Murray has a point — hours after Keehan-Smith was deposed, the board approved a resolution demanding that the city create more pedestrian space on the Queensboro Bridge, so that walkers and cyclists don't have to share one narrow lane.)

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