Vernon Mayor Expresses Support for Police Department
Posted: August 17, 2020
I thank Mr. Kenneth Burns for putting in the time and effort required to gain the approval of a municipal outdoor activity permit that was required to host the “Rally in Support of the Vernon Police Department,” that was held in our town this past Saturday.
I thank Mr. Burns because (1) this rally of support for the Vernon Township Police was well deserved, and (2) it gave me one more opportunity to express my public support for the police department that I work close with every day.
My support for the Vernon Township Police is not based simply on my seven short months as our town’s mayor, but also on the 40 long years that my family and I have lived in this beautiful town.
As we all know, so far, the year 2020 has not been a very good year for any of us—COVID-19 has sickened some of us; it has taken the lives of some of our family members, friends and neighbors; and it has negatively changed the way that we go about our daily lives.
However, in addition to having to deal with these coronavirus generated burdens and negative changes, the men and women in our police department have also had to endure the additional burden of being judged and unfairly held accountable for the wrong, shameful and sometimes deadly behavior of a select few police officers around our nation, whose wrong, shameful and sometimes deadly behavior has been well documented by cell phone camera videos.
For those who may believe that this wrong, shameful and sometimes deadly behavior of a select few police officers represents the behavior of all police officers, or who believe that all police officers are alike, I ask that you just think about that kind of exaggerated and unreasonable judgement for a few minutes.
I can’t help but to believe that when any fair minded, reasonable person thinks about that kind of exaggerated and unreasonable judgement, they will come to the logical conclusion that this kind of exaggerated and unreasonable judgement is not true for every individual in any group—be it all doctors, teachers, lawyers, religious leaders, men, women, blacks, whites or others—they are not all alike; we are all individuals.
I believe that our law enforcement officials should be judged by the same standard that was espoused by the great American, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.—Dr. King said that we should judge each other by the content of our character and the quality of our behavior, and not simply the color of our skin; I modify that great piece of advice by Dr. King by saying that our law enforcement officials, should be judged by the content of their character and the quality of their behavior, and not simply the color of their uniform.
We in Vernon Township are very fortunate to have a good police department that’s led by an outstanding, forward thinking, and young chief of police; please join me in honoring them and thanking them for their service to the Vernon Township community!
Let’s continue to Move Vernon Forward!
Howard L. Burrell, Mayor