Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Atlanta in the News

I know you've all seen the exciting times we've had here in Atlanta. Four people killed in the span of just two days all by one man gone crazy. It's sad that innocent lives are snuffed out all because of inadequate security in the very place that is to execute judgement.

There will be plenty of blame to go around. The budgets that are not able to keep up with the demand so therefore fewer resources (i.e. people, they love to call them resources, as if they are somehow disposable). Others will blame inadequate security controls (i.e. equipment, gadgets, surveillance screens). I've already heard that the security guard has a camera trained on the hallway but somehow he couldn't see the tiny screen. We've all seen these screens split into quadrants.

What's most distressing to me is when they interview some of the deputies. They sound like they've just got off the tractor and might take a look around for the criminal after they feed the chickens. And it's not their accent that bothers me so much, it's their inability to complete a sentence. I don't have much confidence they will find the felon if they can't find the words to describe how they'll do it.

"Well, ya know, we heard that someone saw him drive out the parkin' geerage...but ya know...well we just figured it was so...so we didn't know...and we checked it out later, sure nuf, thar it was Friday night."

Huh? What did he say? Was that information about the case or just about the farm?

Thanks to the woman's ability to call 911, they got a lead and apprehended the guy who surrendered. Here's what I remember him saying:

"Yeah, well when he saw we meant business, he knew he was surrounded with all the swat team there and all. They were surroundin' the apartment and he weren't gettin' out without putting up a fight."

Yeah, it was good that the 911 folks called them.

In another police story an officer slammed a woman to the ground for brushing his arm with her rear view mirror while backing up in a loading zone at the airport. He had just asked her to move her car while she was loading her 80 year old mother. Fortunately the airport security video caught him in the act so his arm in the sling at a court hearing the next day wasn't convincing.

If you ever see me getting beaten by the police, put down the video camera and come help me. -Bobcat Goldthwait