NYSTPBA Newsletter News from NYSTPBA President Tom Mungeer As expected, the NYSP was well represented at the funerals of NYPD Officers Wilbert Mora and Jason Rivera, where tens of thousands of police officers stood shoulder to shoulder to honor these fallen heroes. These line-of-duty deaths seem to be shifting public opinion back to a more reasonable and sane position regarding law enforcement after a year-and-a-half of vilification. However, there are still those detractors lurking and slithering about. Speaking of which… Karma – Times Two I am sure most of you have seen the news reports of the two self-entitled New Yorkers who decided that it was a good idea to spout off on social media about their feelings about the appearance of the aforementioned mass of law enforcement personnel who took the time to attend the funerals of two of the NYPD’s finest. Actress Jacqueline Guzman took to TikTok to state how “f-king ridiculous” she felt it was that the streets were closed for “one f-king cop” who died “for probably doing his job wrong.” Well, her theater company did not get the joke and even if they secretly agreed with her, they did not want the public backlash that immediately erupted because of her comments. She can now add “fired actress” to her resume. Similarly, Chris Flanigan can add “fired math teacher” to his resume as officials at Coney Island Prep also were not amused by his Instagram post that urged violence against police using an overhead of the funeral detail and the words “Ideal conditions for reciprocity” and a refence to the 2020 riots in which an NYPD vehicle hit rioters in an effort to escape the swarming mob. The pendulum seems to be swinging back as the public backlash of these callous messages was both immediate and massive. What Happened? I Thought We Were Friends. Actress Susan Sarandon is also facing backlash after she shared a tweet that compared the mass of police officers attending Officer Rivera’s funeral to “what fascism looks like.” A proponent of the defund the police movement, she has apparently forgotten what happens when our society is attacked and how we have to band together during those times. I remember quite clearly that she and her then-husband Tim Robbins came to the Javits Center and volunteered their time to help serve first responders in the immediate aftermath of September 11, 2001. I always thought that was a noble gesture. However, due to her recent regurgitation of these crazy rants, if I could give back that hot dog she made for me, I would. In addition, my favorite movie scene of her has gone from her role as the baseball groupie in “Bull Durham” to that where she drove off the cliff in “Thelma & Louise.” Bring Forth the Holy Hand Grenade U.S. President Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland visited NYPD headquarters yesterday and met with Gov. Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor Eric Adams and law enforcement officials, including members of the NYSP, to discuss efforts to get guns off the streets. President Biden pledged increased federal assistance and called for more funding for law enforcement to address rising crime. He stated, “Mayor Adams, you and I agree: The answer is not to abandon our streets. The answer is not to defund the police. It’s to give you the tools, the training, the funding to be partners, to be protectors.” According to those who were in attendance, the President expressed his support for law enforcement, a sentiment that I saw firsthand when I met and spoke to him years ago in his capacity as Vice President. However, his words will ring hollow if they are not backed up by meaningful actions. Disturbingly, according to the National Association of Police Organizations, a leaked draft Presidential Executive Order of police reform indicates the Biden administration wants to implement much of Sen. Cory Booker’s reform legislative proposals that went down in flames last summer. If you cannot proceed legislatively, shove it down our throats by edict. The Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch. What better way to eliminate all that is wrong in NYC? Then did he raise on high the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, saying, ‘Bless this, O Lord, that with it thou mayst blow thine enemies to tiny bits, in thy mercy.’ … Now did the Lord say, ‘First thou pullest the Holy Pin. Then thou must count to three. No more. No less. Three shalt be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, nor either count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then, lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it. Amen New York State Insurance Fund COVID Claims I recently contacted Jordan Ziegler, an attorney who has represented many of our members in their Workers Compensation claims over the past two decades, regarding phone calls being made to our members and/or their supervisors from investigators representing the New York State Insurance Fund (NYSIF) regarding on-duty COVID claims. According to Mr. Ziegler: “Please understand that you are absolutely not required to speak with an insurance company investigator for NYSIF. Once you have retained counsel for your COVID claim or any other on-duty injury, your compensation attorney will communicate with the carrier to protect your rights. In fact, we advise our clients NOT to speak with these insurance company investigators and that all the facts will be addressed before the workers compensation board. On those rare occasions where we agree to let our client be interviewed by these investigators, we are present. The NYSIF does not have the authority to mark a case ‘no further action’. That is the role of the Workers Compensation Board after your claim is heard.” If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Jordan Ziegler at 800-692-3717 or Jziegler@workerslaw.com. Justice in Broome County I am happy to announce that Scott Mawhiney, who was convicted in November of shooting and wounding Trooper Ryan Thorp last June in Deposit, has been sentenced to 30 years in prison. Houdini Former Gov. Andrew Cuomo has made it a clean sweep, going five for five, as the Oswego County district attorney echoed his counterparts in Nassau, Westchester, Albany and Manhattan, in announcing that there’s not “sufficient legal basis” to bring charges against him based on allegations of unwanted physical contact. Team Cuomo quickly sent out a press release trumpeting the decision and slamming Attorney General Letitia James in the process - There’s a name for this behavior and it's called prosecutorial misconduct. From the beginning we said this was a political ploy to advance Tish James’ own aspirations to be Governor and - as predicted - she jumped right into the race, only to end her campaign because she refused to answer a single substantive question about this miscarriage of justice. I would not exactly go as far as using the old phrase, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” but I must say, after dealing with the A.G.’s Office over these past two years, he has a point. This segues into the following… The Song Remains the Same - Led Zeppelin A court filing from former President Donald J. Trump and two of his children, Donald Jr. and Ivanka, accuses Attorney General James of also abandoning legal principles in an attempt to gain political support as she continues her three-year investigation into the family’s business practices. The complaint alleges that James has "repeatedly threatened investigation and prosecution" of the Trump family to "garner votes, money and support, and now, as Attorney General, to gain political support." Cue the Trump haters… Gerrymandering 101 Governor Hochul signed off last night on the Legislature’s markedly partisan redesign of the state’s congressional and legislative maps and not surprisingly, the Republicans are suing. Sen. Michael Giannaris’ comments that, “We did the best we could with a flawed process” immediately made me think of the scene from “Goodfellas” where the character Tommy DeVito (played by Joe Pesci) is murdered after being lured to a location under the guise of a promotion within the crime family. His friend Jimmy Conway (played by Robert De Niro) calls to see how the ceremony went - Jimmy Conway: Vinnie, what happened? Vinnie: Well, we-... Jimmy: You get it straightened out? Vinnie: No, we had a problem... and uh, we tried to do everything we could. Jimmy: What d'you mean? Vinnie: Well, you know what I mean. He's gone, and we couldn't do nothing about it…. That’s it. God Loves Idiots and Fools An unintended consequence of the gerrymandering process is that it has caused the wheels to turn in the head of former Mayor Bill de Blasio, who now thinks he has a shot at political redemption in the 11th congressional district (Brooklyn and Staten Island). Thanks to the new maps, this new district is now more heavily drawn to favor Democrats, putting Republican Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis’ reelection bid in doubt. Believe it or not, de Blasio has a shot, albeit an outside one, to return to the political arena but he would have to take on ex-congressman Max Rose, who lost to Malliotakis last election, in a primary. According to a source, 'The Democratic Party is not happy about this. The last thing they want is a primary race where money is wasted and there is mudslinging.” Various Ramblings and Tidbits · The Washington Commanders??? Twenty months, probably millions of dollars spent on numerous surveys and focus groups and this is the end product? We truly live in the dumbest time in history. · Regarding last week’s reference to mead, I stand corrected and acknowledge there is a thriving industry for the beverage. Thank you to those members who - all in a good-natured way - enlightened me on this fact. · RIP Johnny Fever – Howard Hesseman, who played radio DJ Dr. Johnny Fever on the sitcom “WKRP in Cincinnati” - has passed away at the age of 81. Although he had a memorable character, most of us tuned in to watch Loni Anderson. Just saying. Police Officer: You have obviously built up a super-human tolerance to alcohol. Johnny Fever: Yes, it's true. It was once sort of a hobby. This email is an automated notification, which is unable to receive replies. To send a comment to the NYSTPBA, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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