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Why Kansas City Lost Control of Their Police

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posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:11 PM
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In this time of defunding the police and talking about alternative models of control and policing.

I thought I should bring this up.


Kansas City has the only police department in the country with a state-appointed board overseeing it.


Our cops aren't locally controlled. This goes back to a time when a lot of police departments had ended up being run the same way. It was a way to break the corrupt associations between local politicians and the cops.

Back in the '30s local politics and the machine were run by a man named Tom Pendergast and if you didn't play by his tune, you could end up in jail. The cops were that kind of corrupt.


“Police officers were hired and fired at the whim of local politicians,” said Ken Novak, a professor of criminal justice at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. “Police officers owed their livelihood to local politicians, which put them in a position to engage in political corruption.”

Novak said those who fought back got a tough lesson in the power of Pendergast.

“It wasn’t unusual at that time for people who were against the local politician to find themselves in jail on Election Day,” Novak said.

To break the Pendergast machine, the state took over control of the police department with the governor appointing four members of a board to oversee its operation. Kansas City’s mayor is the fifth member and the only locally elected official.


So I guess, the question is ... are we getting to a time when we see a similar sort of corrupt relationship between law enforcement and politics? Are the city officials only too happy to use the cops to enforce their demands and then throw them under the bus as it serves the emotions of the moment?

There is a push on for Kansas City to retain local control of its force, but in St. Louis where that happened 7 years ago, things haven't really changed.

I do know that while we had some unrest. Things stayed low key here, and for the most part, our protests have largely died out by now. So whatever the cops do or don't do, they don't seem to have made a whole lot of enemies in this town.

So is it the issue of where a force is controlled from because I see that someone else online (PJ Media) held up Camden, NJ, as a place that defunded local policing and mostly outsourced it to the county with more rigorous re-hiring standards as a way to clean up their policing, and it seems to be working.

So could de-localizing to some degree or appointing an independent police board for some of these forces help them regain their ability to do their jobs without being brutal? Are their some solutions short of simply disbanding them altogether?




posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:27 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Here are some of my suggesstions that I was thinking of. Have continuous pplice forums with the community. Have a policy of "equal force" SO if a person is committing a non violent offense this person needs to be de escalated non violently and if all possible detained non violently. If this person is causing harm to someone or threatnes violence then equal force should be used to detain this person.

Maybe also have some type of rating system so it can incentivize law enforcement to be proactive in the coomunity like the special moments that we see of officers playing basketball with people and such. Get a good enough rating and maybe that can help with a promotion.

Have community events maybe a free BBQ come down and have a burger and meet a police officer.

I think these things can help with the feeling that law enforcement is centralized and siloed to themselves and we only see law enforecment when there is trouble or danger.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:34 PM
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Well, if this idiotic "defund," or even crazier, "disband" the police movement starts gaining traction in some Democratic run cities, then people will protect themselves. Gun stores around the country have been reporting an unprecedented demand on guns and ammo. Antifa militants might want to think twice, if they're planning on seizing city blocks in other parts of the country.




posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:34 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
So is it the issue of where a force is controlled from because I see that someone else online (PJ Media) held up Camden, NJ, as a place that defunded local policing and mostly outsourced it to the county with more rigorous re-hiring standards as a way to clean up their policing, and it seems to be working.


As a New Jersey resident I was not aware of this policy change but it kind of makes sense from my several recent experiences in Camden.

I've been down there a few times over the past couple years, the waterfront, where the Battleship New Jersey and State Aquarium are located, and the nearby downtown seemed much better than earlier in the past decade. I just attributed this to winning the carjacking/murder roulette but it looks like they cleaned that place up.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:44 PM
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a reply to: AugustusMasonicus

Heh, that same post also cited Baltimore as a place where police reform can go horribly, horribly wrong too.




posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:46 PM
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originally posted by: shawmanfromny
Antifa militants might want to think twice, if they're planning on seizing city blocks in other parts of the country..



I don't know how big the cell is but knowing that there seems to be a group called John Brown gun Club tied to Antifa is a bit of a cause of concern to me. ALeggedly they are in seattle they are the armed members in the permiter of the free zone.




posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 01:47 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

I've experienced that place too and I can say it's also correct on that count.

I guess it comes down to doing the same thing over and over again or trying something new. The old method obviously wasn't working in Camden but the new methods are.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 04:11 PM
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There was an interesting snippet on the news just now.

FOX was televising parts of Trump's roundtable on race relations, and they had one fiery lady on who mentioned that one of the things that came out of the investigations in the wake of the Ferguson debacle is that it looked like the mayor had been using the police as a means of generating revenue for city hall by encouraging more and more interaction with citizens to create tickets and fines.

In these days of cash strapped municipalities, I'm guessing that likely happens a lot more than people generally know, and if we ended that practice (corruption really), it would probably go a long toward reducing police/citizen harassment all the way around. We all know it happens. But reducing those kinds of negative interactions and reducing giving cops a reason to look for trouble wherever they could find it would also reduce that antagonism.

And it might explain why the hard feelings in KC between citizens and police were not enough to sustain the critical mass needed to really explode into true violence -- our cops are not yet beholden to city hall.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 09:21 PM
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a reply to: AugustusMasonicus

Really?

Haven't been there in about 20 years. But I remember my car getting randomly shot at when trying to go to concerts there in the late 90s.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 10:10 PM
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I have to just say it I guess. I am surprised that even here (of all places) there are not more people who are expressing deep concern over what seems to be going on here. Like the fact that there is even a discussion over the necessity of traditional American police going on is a very sketchy thing to contemplate. Something really stinks here. When you think about all the bad # that has happened between governments and their citizens in the past, the story generally tends to include "alternative forms of police" (which is the kind of talk that usually causes people's hair to stand on end).



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 10:15 PM
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a reply to: BrianFlanders

You haven't been paying attention to what happened in the CHAZ in Seattle then?

They have no cops, but the homeless they kindly invited in stole all their food. There is a reason why some structures tend to crop up in society after society throughout history, and it isn't always because of a desire from one man to oppress others although it does arise from basic human nature. As the poor children in Seattle are discovering: societies need some form of security both in terms of protection of assets (even communal ones) and in terms of borders.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 10:36 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
a reply to: BrianFlanders

You haven't been paying attention to what happened in the CHAZ in Seattle then?

They have no cops, but the homeless they kindly invited in stole all their food. There is a reason why some structures tend to crop up in society after society throughout history, and it isn't always because of a desire from one man to oppress others although it does arise from basic human nature. As the poor children in Seattle are discovering: societies need some form of security both in terms of protection of assets (even communal ones) and in terms of borders.



I am pretty sure you missed my point (which is OK because I think we agree on a fundamental level and I don't think you did it on purpose). I think (possibly) if you go back and read my post again with the information that I'm pretty sure you and I do not really disagree, you might see what I'm trying to say here.

I will say this. I do not have a concrete theory on what is going on here but my gut is telling me something very not good is in the works.



posted on Jun, 10 2020 @ 10:45 PM
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And in addition, let me just say this again. The words "alternative forms of policing" are words that rightly should scare the hell out of any thinking person when you consider the fact that we already have a system of law enforcement that works, historically low crime rates and plenty of individual freedom as long as we obey some pretty basic (well-established) laws.

Put simply - There is no rational reason to change the way the police work and we should be very suspicious of any proposed changes in this area of our society.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:14 AM
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originally posted by: watchitburn
Really?

Haven't been there in about 20 years. But I remember my car getting randomly shot at when trying to go to concerts there in the late 90s.


Yeah, it was surprisingly not bad. I thought I just got lucky but apparently they've done a good job cleaning it up.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:18 AM
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a reply to: BrianFlanders

Maybe I did.

Considering though I started the thread to attempt to discuss what does and does not work in law enforcement models and how and why various police reforms around the country have and have not worked, I thought you were upset that I was even talking about keeping police.

My misunderstanding.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:19 AM
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From the left you hear complaints.
From the right you get answers.
At least possible avenues to explore.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:21 AM
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a reply to: BrianFlanders

We don't obey laws because of police, we obey laws because as an individual you recognize the benefits to society as a whole of having a mutually understandable compact about the expectations on how that society should interact with itself.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:22 AM
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a reply to: Asktheanimals

I think we need to be looking at union reform, reducing the use of cops as revenue generators for city hall through the issuing of fines and tickets, and tightening of hiring standards for starters.

The last one is going to be troublesome in the face of modern diversity mandates, but it should be done. Diversity mandates often come with a softening of standards.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:24 AM
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a reply to: ketsuko

I agree with those implementations.

I also think the ownership of military hardware needs to be curtailed, my town does not need an APC.



posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 07:44 AM
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a reply to: AugustusMasonicus

I think there are some places facing situations where that level of hardware is sometimes necessary -- looking at places where the cartels are bleeding over or hardcore gang activity -- but that stuff doesn't necessarily need to be the regular part of the police kit.



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