The Bethlehem conversations on defunding the police (8): Carrie and Vincent and Mrs. Loman

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Good conversation builds community.
The Gadfly

Carrie Fitzgibbon

Giving my warm thanks to the Bethlehem Police Department for everything they do to keep us safe and to keep our quality of life in Bethlehem, and I have heard hundreds and hundreds of comments over the past few weeks as this discussion has grown across our community. . . . Everybody I spoke to does not want any defunding, if anything they want to add more funding for the best training. But from what I heard tonight, it sounds like we are really off the track. So, I’m proud to be a citizen of Bethlehem and proud to have the Bethlehem police. . . . There is actually a “defend the police” petition online that in one week got, I believe, 6000 signatures.

Vincent Facchiano

I’m a second generation son of Italian immigrants that built this city, contributed to the Steel, contributed to the garment industry in Bethlehem. I’m an Eagle Scout . . . involved . . . . 11 years . . . coaching Little League . . . Vietnam veteran . . . I volunteer . . . married here . . . Grenadier band . . . so I am a true stakeholder in Bethlehem . . . living in Bethlehem 64 years . . . homeowner since I was 20 . . . paying taxes . . . registered voter . . . I don’t know how many City Council members can say that they are as deeply rooted in Bethlehem. Yet what if any are the stakeholder qualifications of the radical activists that have caught your attention? In particular, why s it imperative that actions be taken now? What’s going on? Is it because it’s an election year?
[Gadfly apologizes, he had trouble understanding several parts and trouble following Mr. F’s train of thought, so this summary is only the first part of his comment.]

Mrs. Loman

Neither defunding nor disbanding the police department would serve as a viable solution to the problems that have surfaced in the past few months. As a former teacher, I particularly view education as a valuable tool in addressing the issues of police brutality, racism, and other inappropriate behavior. It saddens me to think that the unconscionable actions of a few has cast a pall on so many dedicated and honorable police officers. . . . Any ideas of disbanding or defunding are appalling to me. I think there are so many police officers that truly do their job and go beyond that, and to put them in a category of people using force and treating people horribly is just awful.

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