Ken's View: When the cops are a private club
By Ken Robinson
Our story about the King County Deputy who reposted an offensive diatribe/meme on Facebook rings a sour note with us.
The story is brief but powerful in its revelation of the mind of the deputy whose hateful words make us cringe.
The deputy seems to be astonishingly stupid to believe his private thoughts carry no weight and is immune to back lash. Since the offensive post went up, he has been “put on administrative leave’.
This is where we take issue with the practice of police departments circling the wagons when a paid representative of the department commits wheat appears to clearly be an odious offense.
The department to which the deputy is assigned should step back from any investigation or discipline and let the matter be handled outside of their jurisdiction. This way, the public will not be suspicious of any degree of insider favoritism. In this case, the deputy was not acting in his role as a law enforcement officer. He was freelancing as a citizen posting on Facebook.
We posted the story on our website, too. One freeloader asked in a comment “Doesn’t the deputy deserver First Amendment rights?” Yes, he does. Bu we also deserve to employ deputies who do not have a bottom-of-the-barrel moral viewpoint.
I think it is dead wrong for Sheriff Mitizi Johanknecht to oversee the discipline of this deputy. What she should do it apologize for ever hiring this cretin and fire him without looking back. The Sheriff is answerable to us.
It is with some mixed emotion that we note the burning of Yarington’s White Center Funeral Home. We grew up in White Center. Dick Yarington, the eponymous owner of the place, was well-known to us at the newspaper because he would never buy an ad after seeing a front-page ad for a competing funeral home on page one of the paper.
We knew him slightly, having called on him for advertising in the 70s. He was always courteous and welcoming if a bit somber in his professional demeanor.
He invited us to ‘tour’ the place one day. The lights were always low and as we walked slowly through the display room of caskets, we got that creepy feeling one might expect in a place where death is the overarching theme.
Vertical shafts of daylight at the edges of the curtains on the outer wall beckoned as a way to get out of the room. No, we did not want to look into a casket, thank you.