By Rosalie Tirella
I got a chance to catch last week’s Worcester City Council meeting. Appalling! To see all our city councilors get up to kiss Police Chief Gary Gemme’s ass – after he throws out his “you- should-thank-God-for-the-WPD crime” report. For without us, Police Chief Gemme was telling the council (not so blatantly, of course) this place would be Dodge City!! This place would be overrun with crime and criminals!” (truth: Worcester has a lower crime rate than Hartford, Springield, etc because Woercester has more upper income folks/families living in our city limits than cities like Hartford or Springfield do. And rich people don’t commit the kinds of crimes poor/desperate people do. Springfiled, Hartford – even Providence – have many more poor people – poor neighborhoods – than we do. In fact, Hartford is one of the poorest cities in New England and one of the poorest in the USA!).
But the Worcester City Council was not thinking that way last Tuesday night – no siree! My God, our city councilors took turns to get up to say, We love the WPD! We love the Quinn Bill and our “educated cops!”
City Councilor Gary Rosen was insanely complimentary (he is running for State Rep Bob Spellane’s soon to be emptied seat) telling us all: I used to be a teacher and it kills me, just kills me, to see anyone make fun of any educational institution and anyone’s school degree/diploma! How dare people diss the Quinn Bill educated cops and the school that spits out their diplomas.
Hold the mimiograph machine, Gary! Even if the teachers aren’t crentialed, Gary, do we still support the institution of higher learning? Even if experts in the area called the diploma/certificate-issueing school (Anna Maria) a diploma mill? Even if the head of the “school” was replaced by someone new?
Get a fuckin’ grip, Gary. Ditto for city counilors Phil Palmeiri, Mike Germian and the other pander-ers.
Of course, election day is less than 2 weeks away. So of course, you need to pander!
And this has all happened on the heels of a WPD police union meeting (I have the minutes) in which the cops say they are going to turn their enemies (city councilors who don’t give them all the money they want) into toast! They said, during their meeting, that they must make sure all the anti-Quinn Bill city councilors lose election/reelection big time. The councilors who “support” them when it comes to maintaining the status quo – well, they will have cops donating money to their campaigns and working 8 hours (per cop) on their campaigns, holding political signs for the city councilors. Councilors who have decided to kiss their butts and give them what they want.
Only in a teeny town – not a Boston or even a Hartford – would politicians be scared so shitless of a police chief and police officers … issuing pointless ultimatums.
A real city would call these guys’ bluff.
But not Wormtown.