Reading, MA was holding a town meeting this past Tuesday evening to discuss hiring a new chief of police. The town has been without a chief of police for over a year. A good amount of police officers in the town showed up to hear the discussion unfold in front of the board of select-people. It was during this discussion among the select-people and taxpayers of the town, that a Selectman, Andrew Friedmann, expressed his true feelings about police and made some off color controversial comments that resulted in a large amount of the police presence walking out of the meeting. Hear what he said here:
1) Do you blame the police for walking out? 2) Do you think others in the town of Reading feel the same way this Selectman Friedmann does? That police walking around with state issued weapons (as part of their job) are intimidating?
I am a bit bias on this subject seeing as how I'm married to a police officer but maybe I'm the one in the minority...call me crazy but I like the idea of police walking around with weapons in the rare incident they need to use it to take out an active shooter who is terrorizing our community and hurting innocent people. I don't think police are walking around trying to scare you with their guns. We are a country of law and order and as so we hire police to uphold those laws that we elect people to put into law for us so if you have a problem with police, maybe you have a problem with law and order. Yes there are good and bad apples, like there are good and bad apples in every occupation but I find it hard to believe every single officer in your town is out to intimidate you. If you feel intimidated, that seems like a personal problem where you've been taught to feel that way when it should be the opposite. To say something like that as an elected official, someone who we expect to be held to a higher standard, is a disgrace.
Selectman Friedmann has since apologized for his statements: "I deeply regret my statement and recognize it was wrong. It was one of those comments, made in the heat of the moment, that I wish I could take back. In addition to the members of the Reading Police Department, I also wish to apologize to the residents of Reading."