Thanks to the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board for publishing my opinion on the correlation between the cheating Houston Astros and the Chicago Police Department's command structure. Baseball stepped up and did the right thing. They gave Astros' General Manager and Field Manager a one year sentence and in turn, the Astros' owner fired them both. His words were a refreshing breeze when it comes to accountability and leadership in any organization. "THEY DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE ACTUAL CHEATING BUT THEY STOOD BY AND LET IT HAPPEN."
The Chicago Police Command structure continues to throw the good men and women of the Chicago Police Department under the bus. Leadership starts at the TOP but this fact has continually eluded some of Chicago's top brass and supervisors over the last several years. The Marine Corps has a strict code when it comes to leadership and it stayed with me my entire life. "LEAD-FOLLOW-OR GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WAY."
The following was my opinion published in the Chicago Tribune Editorial Section on January 14, 2020.
"Although it's an entirely different industry and baseball is only a sport, the Chicago Police Department should take a good look at how baseball handled a scandal. The Lords of Baseball got it right when they suspended the Houston Astros' General Manager and Field Manager for one year, involving SIGN stealing during their World Series run of 2017. Although it was the players who executed the cheating, the leadership was held accountable and rightly so. Baseball's decision-makers ultimately cost both men their jobs when the Astros' owner went a step further and fired both men. Leadership starts at the TOP and the Lords of Baseball's example should be noted by Chicago's Police Leadership. For far too long the police brass and supervisors have been allowed to let the low hanging fruit take the fall for far too many scandals. Ask yourself, how many supervisors above the rank of sergeant have ever been disciplined for one scandal after another? It's always the rank and file left out to dry. Nothing will ever change until those in charge pay a price. Only then by example will things begin to change, and my guess is it will change drastically. The men and women of the Chicago Police Department deserve the best leadership possible and it's time to realize TOP leadership needs to be held ACCOUNTABLE. Baseball got it right."
The big difference of course between baseball and police officers is that baseball is a game played for the entertainment of others and to the enrichment of the players and executives earning millions upon millions of dollars. For police officers, we know that the highest distinctions are service to others. The following quote was by General Douglas MacArthur, a man who knew leadership and its RESPONSIBILITIES. "A true leader has the confidence to stand alone. The courage to make tough decisions and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He or she does not set out to be a leader but becomes one by the equality of his or her actions and the integrity of their intent."
Now that the Acting Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department has eliminated so-called MERIT promotions, Chicago's finest will be able to find and cultivate future leaders. Being a politically connected toad, a driver, relative, wife, or girlfriend, does not bode well in leadership positions which has been an albatross for far too many years forced on a beleaguered department. My hope is that future supervisors and command officers when attending the Police Academy will be able to look up and see General MacArthur's quote. A new beginning. It's a long time in coming.
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