This post has already been read 312 times!
While IBNN understands the need for public safety in downtown Minneapolis, the city’s law enforcement must get more human relations, sensitivity training as it pertains to various situations involving crowd control where people of color are called “animals” and crime victims are treated like criminals. If this is mayor R.T. Rybak’s design of a great downtown, no wonder the Democratic Convention will be held in another city.
by Donald W.R. Allen, II – Editor in Chief/IBNN NEWS and Black Politics in Minneapolis
Minneapolis, MN (IBNN NEWS/May 2, 2011)…If you visit downtown Minneapolis for a night out on the town, its usually a good idea to have dinner, dance and get the hell out before bar closing time. You could end up as a victim of assault by someone who is there to protect and serve.
Over the weekend, several reports of violent crimes including a shooting and a woman being stabbed in a local night spot. In a story published by the Star Tribune, “Woman stabbed at downtown Minneapolis club, Minneapolis Police officier James Archer, (a First Precinct officer) said, “Oh, it’s crazy,” as it pertains to the activity that happens after club closing in downtown Minneapolis.
Now, let’s put the City of Minneapolis elected officials and “program hypocracy” into play.
In March 2011, The Downtown 100 program was being promoted has reduced crime among chronic offenders by providing guidance. In that same article published by the Star Tribune (city officials promotional arm), it stated that crime committed by the first 50 offenders targeted dropped in the 120-block downtown core by 74 percent between 2009 and 2010, according to the city. Really, was this a positioning piece for more funding? The record clearly shows “dropping crime” is not the case. Who comes up with these cockamamie ideas?
While Minneapolis city officials are great with promotional statistics, the fact is, violent crime is growing and as the weather gets better expect to see more incidents of assault, robbery and possibly stabbings and shootings in downtown Minneapolis.
What hasn’t been addressed is the behavior of a few select Minneapolis Police officers when dealing with crowd control in downtown Minneapolis.
An eyewitness who saw how Minneapolis Police treated injured “vitcims” said, “The police treated the victim like a criminal. They put hand cuffs on him while he was writhing in pain. When another eye witness loudly voiced that the police should hurry up and get the victim into the ambulance and on his way to the hospital, the police pepper sprayed the eye witness. Just how disgusting is that? I hope it wasn’t the “officer of the year” that pulled that bone-headed move.”
There have been numerous reports and complaints filed with the Minneapolis’ Department of Civil Rights, (whom we have to remember gets it’s paychecks from the city) on pepper spraying incidents in downtown Minneapolis. The MPD is real swift on peppering up a crowd with no discern for who is affected.
Elizabeth K. a twenty-three year old White woman told IBNN NEWS, “My boyfriend, who is Black was a little tipsy. We stopped on the corner of 5th & Hennepin so he could lean up against the building (Lumber Exchange). We were asked to keep moving and my boyfriend shouted out, ‘give us a minute.’ Almost immediately we were both pepper sprayed by a Minneapolis Police officer. I never go downtown anymore.”
This is the sentiment of a growing population of people who celebrate the downtown Minneapolis nightlife.
There are emergency steps which city officials must take to side-step the current violence in downtown Minneapolis. Solutions like checking night club licensing and other annoying business owner processes is will not solve the outbreak of reported and unreported crime in Minneapolis.
The focus has been on night clubs that cater to people of color. This is a racist move that will have great repercussions on the city’s warehouse district commerce.
Take my advice, get in early and get out – or stay at home, rent a movie and enjoy your weekend.