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*** UPDATED x2 *** The Chicago FOP is a gift that keeps on giving for police reformers

Thursday, Jan 7, 2021

* Just imagine if the US Armed Forces had taken the same attitude as local police unions the past few months…

No fights or violence? Somebody got shot, for crying out loud. Cops were injured in the supposedly non-violent storming of the United States Capitol that was intended to stop the official certification of a presidential election…

* The legislative lame duck session starts tomorrow, and this week’s insanity will be fresh in everyone’s minds.

As subscribers know, police reform is very high on the agenda. One aspect of the bill would remove discipline and discharge procedures from the collective bargaining process. Officers who deprive people of rights would be subject to individual civil liability. Anonymous complaints against police would be allowed, more types of chokeholds would be banned, officers would be required to intervene to prevent other officers from violating peoples’ rights. Misconduct charges could be filed for knowingly misrepresenting facts in a police report. And a licensing bill is about to pop.

Catanzara just made the proponents’ job a whole lot easier. They should send him flowers or something.

*** UPDATE 1 *** Unlike Catanzara, the Illinois FOP can apparently read the room…

The Illinois Fraternal Order Police (FOP) State Lodge, FOP Labor Council, and FOP Troopers Lodge 41 have issued a statement regarding the storming of the United States Capitol by a mob on Wednesday:

“The members of the mob who tried to undermine the very core of our democracy yesterday are terrorists and should be treated as such. They should be hunted down and prosecuted with the same urgency as all others who have threatened the existence of our free nation. The members of the Fraternal Order of Police pledge to assist in any way we can to bring these individuals to justice and to insure that the loyal, law-abiding citizens we are sworn to protect and serve never have to experience this level of infamy again.”

I have asked the ILFOP for react to Catanzara’s remarks. I’ll let you know if they respond.

*** UPDATE 2 *** The ILFOP responded to my request for a react to Catanzara’s remarks…

This is from State Lodge President Chris Southwood, Labor Council Executive Director Shawn Roselieb and Troopers Lodge President Joe Moon: There is no excuse for what happened yesterday at the Capitol. Period. We don’t agree with anyone who says otherwise.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Ron Burgundy - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:41 am:

    Bold strategy to be on the side of the mob against thousands of fellow officers, of which dozens suffered injuries. Yes officers, this guy has your back… I’m guessing his views were reversed last summer. As for no looting, tell that to the fool photographed carrying the podium.

  2. - Smalls - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:45 am:

    Per Rep Tim Ryan, 15 police officers in the hospital and one in critical condition from yesterday, mostly from being hit with lead pipes.

  3. - shocked - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:46 am:

    Removing discipline/discharge issues from collective bargaining for police is a necessity. Licensing itself could be really helpful to keep bad actors from bouncing around to different police departments, but the public body in charge of disciplining the license has to be empowered to take all misconduct very seriously, including misrepresenting facts in misconduct allegations/upholding the code of silence. All of these steps are necessary but I think we also have to take seriously alternative approaches to public safety on top of these reforms

  4. - Guy Probably - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:47 am:

    I just read the whole tweet thread. Worth reading the rest as well. If his statements can help get meaningful reform passed, then his leadership will have been worth something.

  5. - @misterjayem - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:51 am:

    “They should send him flowers or something.”

    I’ve wanted to send him “or something” for ages.

    – MrJM

  6. - Larry Bowa Jr. - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:52 am:

    From the rest of the thread: “They’re individuals, they get to do what they want.”

    If it feels good, do it (as long as you’re white)! I will absolutely keep this in mind, thanks for the explicit permission John.

  7. - ChicagoVinny - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:56 am:

    === Removing discipline/discharge issues from collective bargaining for police is a necessity. ===

    Yes. We need accountability.

  8. - Jocko - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:58 am:

    ==It was a bunch of pissed-off WHITE people that feel an election was stolen==

    Fixed it for him. Apparently it’s okay to form a mob, break into a federal building, disrupt proceedings, and root through congressional offices if you’re frustrated.

  9. - Amalia - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:58 am:

    photos of this delusional guy at the White House with Trump. sold whatever was left of his soul. Cops got hurt yesterday. that alone is violence. he does not support police.

  10. - n-t-c - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:59 am:

    ===Removing discipline/discharge issues from collective bargaining for police is a necessity===

    How do you balance the need for fairness and due process in police discipline proceedings with the public interest in accountability?

    For decades, the officers were given the benefit of the doubt, and whatever they (or their spokesmen) said was accepted if there was even a scintilla of plausibility.

    The ubiquity of cameras, whether worn by the officer or in the hands of bystanders, has changed everything, especially in view of the not uncommon occurrence of the officer’s claim being disproven by the video.

    Licensing and insurance may go a long way to fixing this, but the devil is in the details.

  11. - Former Downstater - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:01 pm:

    Unless Lodge 7 removes him as president of the union, we have to assume the membership agrees that insurrection is okay. Where are the good apples?

  12. - 1st Ward - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:01 pm:

    From the rest of the thread “Do I support (the Capitol Attack)? I wouldn’t have partaken in it”.

    Talk about whiffing on your own softball question…..

  13. - Almost the weekend - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:11 pm:

    Put him and the execs of CTU in the same room you solve all the world’s problems by February.

    Major major /s

  14. - Anonymous - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:11 pm:

    Think about it anyone can claim anything to ruin someone with no proof. WOW. Better prepare to take care of yourself. W hy would anyone what to be the Police.Yea the Police are the problem. Almost 800 killed in Chicago in 2020. Chicago Cops were shot at 77 times. How about we ask the criminals to de-escalate.

  15. - Ducky LaMoore - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:18 pm:

    “As for no looting, tell that to the fool photographed carrying the podium.”

    This drives me crazy… I know I know, I shouldn’t be this mad. But, it was a lectern not a podium. You stand on a podium and behind a lectern.

  16. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:25 pm:

    The fact that the leader of the police union feels he can say such ignorance freely and as points of information is reason enough for far more scrutiny of police and the reforms should be something that should be pushed through if only to make a leader think twice about saying the thing they believe out lout that seems to go against the oath officers take.

  17. - pc - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:39 pm:

    Catanzara’s comments are really dangerous. The people responsible for yesterday are still out there, as are many others like them. They will read Catanzara’s statements as indicating that the Chicago police are, if not actually in agreement with them, at least not opposed to them. This is an invitation to these terrorists to turn to Chicago next.

  18. - Anyone Remember - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:40 pm:

    “For decades … .”

    While reform is needed, stopping the use of law enforcement as “untrained social workers with guns” and ending “The War on Drugs” will eliminate a considerable percentage of problematic law enforcement interactions with the public.

  19. - Ctrl+Shift+F12 - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 12:49 pm:

    Fire police leadership and anyone who advocated for “warrior training”. It’s the fruit of a poison tree, and they will only continue to promote violence against those they’re supposed to protect.

  20. - Payback - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:02 pm:

    “Officers who deprive people of rights would be subject to individual civil liability.” A good start, but what’s needed is prosecution of police criminals, with prison time. One conviction of a Jon Burge or Jason Van Dyke will discourage one thousand bad cops.

    “…officers would be required to intervene to prevent other officers from violating peoples’ rights.” This has to be a criminal charge if police fail to report crimes by other police.

    “Misconduct charges could be filed for knowingly misrepresenting facts in a police report.” This has to be a felony charge, or police will still cover up for other police who alter reports, like at the Laquan McDonald scene.

    “And a licensing bill is about to pop.” Licensing is a sideshow to real police accountability. The proof of this is that AG Kwame Raoul supports it, the guy who bargained away criminal charges for “departmental charges” in his SB1304 body cam bill.

  21. - Ghost of Martin Kennelly - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:08 pm:

    Just think there’s actually Cook County residents that feel that only police officers should own handguns. Go figure.

  22. - Original Rambler - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:15 pm:

    Glad to see police reform on the agenda. That alone should take up most of the oxygen of the session.

  23. - Zim - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:25 pm:

    ==Per Rep Tim Ryan, 15 police officers in the hospital and one in critical condition from yesterday…===

    CNBC now reporting at least 50 officers were injured. I wonder what some I know in law enforcement make of that.

  24. - @misterjayem - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:27 pm:

    “Think about it anyone can claim anything to ruin someone with no proof. WOW.”

    “If you didn’t do nothing wrong, then you’ve got nothing to hide.” — every cop, ever

    – MrJM

  25. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:31 pm:

    ===Think about it anyone can claim anything===

    You ever heard of Crime Stoppers?

    “Crime Stoppers pays cash rewards up to $2500 for information resulting in an arrest and remember, we only want your information, not your name!”

  26. - ZC - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    John Catanzara and Sarah Chambers really ought to start up a union Public Relations firm sometime.

  27. - Veil of Ignorance - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:40 pm:

    Chicago FOP doing the favor of exposing their own sympathies and affinity for the white power and anti-democracy movement.

  28. - Huh - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:44 pm:

    Fire police leadership and anyone who advocated for “warrior training”. It’s the fruit of a poison tree, and they will only continue to promote violence against those they’re supposed to protect……….you never wore a uniform. Please stick to commenting on subjects you are familiar with.

  29. - LakeCo - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 1:47 pm:

    Great article about this on 538 today. In a nutshell: research shows that authorities are more than twice as likely to break up a left-wing protest than a right-wing protest.

  30. - JoanP - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 2:44 pm:

    @LakeCo -

    Thank you for the link. I can’t say I’m surprised, but good to have the research.

  31. - Angry Chicagoan - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 2:56 pm:

    Former Downstater — probably too late for that. They installed him by an enormous margin, knowing full well his appalling record, and have kept him there through one scandal after another.

  32. - MyTwoCents - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 3:15 pm:

    First of all, that full thread is quite the read. Catanzara obviously has not seen the news. The pictures & videos of the broken doors & windows, the breaking a window to enter the building, the trashed offices, the looting & stolen laptop, etc. That is significant property damage & criminal activity. As to the tweet in the post, I doubt rioters just found lead pipes laying around & I’ve seen video of people with baseball bats. That is premeditated violence.

    Secondly, when police reform is being debated every single Representative & Senator who is a supporter should use Catanzara’s actions & words as an example of why reform is needed. It needs to be made explicitly clear that the Chicago FOP leader is partially responsible for the passage of police reform in Illinois. That should also be communicated to every CPD officer who complains about the bill(s). To paraphrase a common quote on this site, “(union) elections have consequences.”

  33. - Will Caskey - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 3:43 pm:

    I will once AGAIN say that the Chicago police superintendent has a broad array of powers to take direct action in the event of a crisis, including the declaration of an emergency within CPD.

    Chicago also has vast powers to remove people with union job protections. Just ask CPS. They routinely mass eliminate jobs then re-create them, and force teachers to re-apply to skip the step of laying them off. There is nothing whatsoever saying CPD can’t do that too.

    Now, you can say CPS shouldn’t do that, but you, anyone saying that, have not and will never do a thing to stop it. It’s an administrative tool available to the city, that the city chooses not to use.

    I fully support reforms up to and including dissolving FOPs wholesale, but the reform discussion is always going to be DOA until executives in power are willing to use the powers they already have.

  34. - Dotnonymous - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 3:48 pm:

    Catanzara must be held to account…at long last.

    Waiting to see the response from ILFOP.

  35. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 3:51 pm:

    My thanks to the Illinois FOP, both in statement and response.

    It’s important, I’m glad to read it.

  36. - Dotnonymous - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 4:39 pm:

    “We don’t agree with anyone who says otherwise.” - ILGOP

    Catanzara has gone rogue.

  37. - Quizzical - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 4:41 pm:

    As long as this guy represents the FOP, Lightfoot has a green light to gore their Ox without losing votes.

  38. - Advocate - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 5:03 pm:

    As others have noted where is Catanzara’s concern for 50 injured officers? If he wants to be a Trumper more power to him, as much as I disagree, but how can a cop support cops being injured, no matter who is doing the injuring? If there’s one thing I thought police were firm on it was their support for fellow officers.

  39. - j - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 8:45 pm:

    One officer from the mess in DC is on life support pending arrival of his family. Add Catanza to the list of those who need to be impeached.

  40. - I Know a Thing or Two - Thursday, Jan 7, 21 @ 11:04 pm:

    If any of you think any negative comments about Catanzara will affect him, then you don’t know the man. He relishes in the publicity. Makes him feel like the big man he really isn’t. How the fools voted him into office is something I’ll never understand. This guy and his whole crew are radioactive. FOP Chicago is the new Chernobyl.

  41. - Chambananon - Friday, Jan 8, 21 @ 12:45 am:

    The United States Capitol Police Department has now tragically confirmed that Officer Brian D. Sicknick died as the result of injuries sustained on duty during these acts of insurrection and sedition.

    Is it violent enough for Catanzara to be upset now?

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