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More on Mutts

February 18, 2018

NYPD Confidential recently posed this question: Was PBA President Pat Lynch’s use of the word “mutt” to describe a 16-year-old black youth who dragged a detective in a stolen car, causing him permanent brain injuries, racist? The column drew an overwhelming response. Here are some of them.

bullet “As a long-time reader with 32+ years in federal law enforcement, your description of "mutt" is correct … it refers to all low-life criminals REGARDLESS of racial and/or ethnic background. The individuals making such an uproar, like those claiming that pictures of coal miners and Mary Poppins chimney sweeps are racist, are frankly race-baiters and need to be called out as such, regardless of their estimable positions in life.”
Former U.S Customs, Department Homeland Security officer, New Jersey.

Click here to read what the police brass say about NYPD Confidentialbullet ”Mutt” is an equal opportunity moniker. … Where does it end? I’m no fan of Rodney King [L.A. riots] but he asked one question that I see we still have not answered: “Why can’t we all just get along?”
Former NYPD officer, NYC.

bullet “My experiences on those Harlem streets taught me how abusive some cops could be, but James Baldwin made me understand the depth of the damage to black folks. A black cop with whom I worked … used to take me around to bars in Harlem after we’d get back to the Station House from a day in court; just the two of us, sometimes within the precinct, but mostly in the 3-2 or 3-0. He made me understand what is was like raising a young son and daughter when every one of the TV commercials was White. … How would I have come to that concept on my own? That conversation [commercials, blond hair…] took place in the Spotlight bar on 8th [Avenue], between 125th and 126th Streets. In the confines of the 28 Pct. Please use my name, Frank Grimes, and the name of my deceased black friend and mentor, Myron Cherry, who raised my consciousness.
Frank Grimes former NYPD officer, Mexico.

bullet I believe most of the problem lies with PBA President P. Lynch. He is a showman and theatrical, with over the top responses to crimes against patrol officers. He seems to be always angry in public. A wiser police union leader who wants respect should reflect a more calm public appearance. It seems since he blew the last NYPD/PBA contract by going to arbitration he has ratcheted up his theatrical anger…
Attorney, NYC.

Click here to read the New York Times profile of Leonard Levittbullet I don't believe Pat [Lynch] meant any racial animosity. I have never seen any indication of this. But I have never heard of any police official using a derogatory term against any person who was not a person of color. Remember Robert Chambers, who murdered a young girl in Central Park? He was termed the Preppie killer by all. Do I have a word I can offer instead of Preppie? Yes. Mutt.
Former Chief, NYPD.

bullet I did steady midnights as did a friend of mine “Danny,” who happened to live in New Jersey where cops were not allowed to live. Therefore, he never let it be known what he really did for a living lest he might be ratted out and potentially be fired. Danny was making numerous arrests and apparently going home and telling his wife that he “grabbed another mutt” last night. His young son, who was in kindergarten, must have heard the term often because when Dan and his wife went to a parent/teacher conference the teacher thought Dan was a dog catcher. Dan asked the teacher why she thought he was a dog catcher and she explained that when she asked the class what their fathers did, his son replied, “My dad catches mutts.”
Former Deputy Chief, NYPD.

Click here to read the Washington Post article on NYPD Confidentialbullet Assuming you are Jewish I have to believe that over the many years you have been covering the NYPD, you may have called a mutt many times.
Former NYPD officer, Long Island.

Last week, Christopher Ransom, an eccentric with a criminal past, allegedly robbed a T-Mobile store in Queens that led to the fatal “friendly fire” shooting of Det. Brian Simonsen. Does the word “mutt” apply to Ransom? Does it matter whether he is black or white?

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