Latest in a series of posts about the Bethlehem Police
Reprinted from Councilwoman Van Wirt’s Facebook page:
I think this is absolutely the right question. “The real question is if the mayor has confidence in the chief to lead the conversation between our community and law enforcement,” Reynolds said. City Council has no power in appointing the Police Chief- this lies exclusively with the Mayor. But I do think it is important for City Council to give voice to legitimate concerns over the Police Chief’s leadership ability. My confidence in the Chief’s ability to not just lead his force, but to even want to participate in helping Bethlehem find a path forward through these serious and very real problems, has been further eroded. I do not think social media situations like this one are just a matter of a ‘poor choice’ but rather lets us see into the unvarnished truth of Chief’s Diluzio’s real feelings about protesting structural racism, (nobody cares) and his ability to embrace and understand Bethlehem’s modern day challenges and issues.
“Bethlehem police Chief Mark DiLuzio abruptly retired Friday, five days after reposting an offensive Facebook meme that prompted a public scolding by the mayor. ‘I do agree that it compromised my position. I figured, the hell with it — I’ll just retire now,’ DiLuzio said, noting he had planned to retire at the end of the year.” (Gadfly notes that the Chief suggests that his reason for re-posting the image was that “Both the movie and Seinfeld are two of my favorite shows.” Neither in his apology letters to Council, the message on his Facebook page, nor in this interview several days later does he recognize and acknowledge that the image itself is racially insensitive and apologize for his original choice.)