Tuesday, May 20, 2008
If not now, when?
I reported for work this morning feeling kind of down. Work has become uninspiring. Past practice has demonstrated that we can no longer advance to the upper tiers of the department through achievement, but by friendships and political sponsorship. Do I love what I do? Yes. Do I love being a cop? Yes. Do I give my job my all? Yes. Then what could it be? Could it be the waste of resources? Could it be the chronic cronyism? Could it be the lack of leadership? Yes. Yes. Yes. The time has come for change. As we cannot do it from within the organization, due to the present command structure which punishes those who speak out or do not agree with the way things are done. Therefore the time has come to change from outside the organization. To change from a politically "appointed" director and command staff, to an "elected sheriff." A sheriff elected by the people, who represents the people--all the people, not just the mayor's and police director's friends and supporters. We can no longer just stand by and watch things get progressively worse. We must work together. I've decided to become a community organizer. I urge you to take hold of the future of Miami-Dade County. People tell me I can't change the world, and people won't appreciate me trying. I believe we can do our part to see that it bends toward fairness and merit. We know what the cynics will say. We've heard from them all our lives. These are the voices that will tell you - not just what you can't do - but what you won't do. Citizens won't come together - our allegiance doesn't go beyond our political party. This is the soft sell of the status quo, the voice that tells you to settle because settling isn't that bad. In communities across Miami-Dade County, block by block, we can bring the community together, gather signatures from registered voters, and fight to bring Miami-Dade Police Department back to being the great department that it once was--by changing the county charter. The decisions we make today will shape the century that our children grow up in. I have not served the county for over two decades to stay on the sidelines at a time when we need to step up to the challenge. If we don't rise up to seize this moment, then we may not get another.