While sipping on a Sunday morning coffee, I just about spit it out over the infernal cat when I read the Calgary Sun's "blow job" on that city's Chief Constable Jack Beaton. ( Top cop to focus on gangs)
Quite apart from anything else, it seems quite disingenous for the Calgary Sun to refer to the tumultuous tenure of Beaton given that the paper has virtually ignored the main story in its entirety for the past eight months to a year.
It's a funny thing really, a major metropolitan daily acting as though everything was fine and dandy in the city police service despite the majority of police officers expressing in a survey that they had no confidence in its management, despite a variety of criticisms against the senior management including formal complaints and civil suits filed against the chief himself.
The rest of the media in Calgary covered the bullying tactics of Beaton as he exercised extraordinary methods to silence the authors of a website critical of him. Once complete, then Beaton conducted a witch hunt to further silence people who had the unmitigated gall to email the website authors. The witch hunt even attempted to reach right into the office of the Minister of Jutice. But not the Calgary Sun.
It's extraordinary really. And now they give mere mention of the sordid chapter in a piece extolling the virtues of the Chief as Beaton finally allows there is a gang problem in that fair city. That's rich.
Calgary has had a "gang" problem for a number of years now. Ask any police officer. Indeed, ask any police officer involved in organized crime investigation in either Edmonton or Vancouver and they will tell you of the triangle of organized crime between those cities.
It' s all about drugs and it's all about the power and money that go hand in hand with drugs. To suggest, as Beaton does in the story, backhandedly, that the police will easily handle the problem is naieve in the extreme. To further claim that they will do it as they handled the Hells Angels is frighteningly ridiculous.
The Calgary Police Service merely won a battle in a much larger war against organized crime and the Hells Angels when they successfully concluded an investigation that resulted in the arrest of a few patches. The city expropriated their clubhouse and forced its relocation. That is all.
The war against organized crime is being fought on many fronts by many brave men and women. The gang problems that arise in all cities is merely a by-product of the bigger war. It needs to be recognized and fought properly and never trivialized.
I take no issue with elements within the media that want to support law enforcement. No one in the media defends the police more than yours truly. But, to ignore significant and substantial criticism in favor of lobbing softballs at a problem that grows daily is merely playing sap to the problem itself.