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Ahh, Ramsey.. when will you learn?

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  • James Treworgy
    Well, I think this about says it all: -For his part, Ramsey said he does not even look at the site. - - He has a right to put up a Web site, Ramsey said. If
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 30, 2004
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      Well, I think this about says it all:

      -For his part, Ramsey said he does not even look at the site.
      -
      -"He has a right to put up a Web site," Ramsey said. "If that is what
      -he wants, a forum for that, there is nothing I can do about it."

      If you were someone who cared one whit about doing your job, wouldn't
      you be looking at the most high-profile web site out there discussing
      what goes on in your agency, and in fact, largely involving
      discussions among your own employees? Wouldn't you want to know what
      kind of problems people have, but aren't willing to say in official
      communications because they are afraid of losing their jobs?

      Oh, no. Not Ramsey. For him, this is a thorn in his side which he
      apparently wishes he could "do something about".

      Guess what: there is something you can do about it. Read it, react to
      it. Wanna really impress people? Post to it. At least have someone who
      reports to you doing this if you can't be bothered yourself. Didn't
      you learn back in kindergarten that covering your eyes doesn't make
      things go away?

      -- Jamie

      Friday, April 30, 2004, 2:39:47 PM, you wrote:

      WOD> Gadfly Site Helps Police Vent Their Frustrations
      WOD> Web Board Provides Anonymous Haven

      WOD> http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A50053-2004Apr28.html

      WOD> By Del Quentin Wilber
      WOD> Washington Post Staff Writer
      WOD> Thursday, April 29, 2004; Page DZ03



      WOD> Disgusted at what he felt was poor police response to his
      WOD> mugging in late 2002, John Aravosis set up a Web site last year
      WOD> to track the performance of the D.C. police and serve as a
      WOD> sounding board for community complaints about officers.

      WOD> The 40-year-old political consultant said he thought his
      WOD> site would annoy the police department and perhaps spur the
      WOD> agency into taking quicker action on crime. He never imagined
      WOD> that www.safestreetsdc.com would become popular not only with
      WOD> neighborhood groups but also with members of the department he
      WOD> was complaining about: dozens, and perhaps hundreds, of police
      WOD> officers.

      WOD> Some even grew testy, Aravosis said, when the message board
      WOD> vanished a few months ago and the activist took a break from
      WOD> updating the site's news and commentary. The police had been
      WOD> using the message board to voice the frustrations they face in
      WOD> doing their jobs.

      WOD> Last week, the three-month hiatus ended when Aravosis
      WOD> upgraded the site's bulletin board and brought in a partner to
      WOD> help him monitor discussion threads and post more news and other
      WOD> items.

      WOD> Aravosis said he decided he could not abandon the volunteer
      WOD> project because he grew to care about the plight of rank-and-file
      WOD> officers and wanted to keep pressure on the agency's top brass to
      WOD> fix crime and other problems.

      WOD> "The problems we discovered were so severe in the agency
      WOD> that we were not going to stop," Aravosis said. "We had done too
      WOD> well in discovering way too much. It would have been a crime to
      WOD> let it go away."

      WOD> Union officials said they are glad that the site has resurfaced.

      WOD> "We were always checking it out," said Sgt. Gregory I.
      WOD> Greene, chairman of the D.C. police labor committee in the
      WOD> Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 1. "It's like the gossip column
      WOD> for the police department, only with some truth. They go on the
      WOD> site and find out what's happening."

      WOD> The evolution of the site shows how anyone with an Internet
      WOD> connection can become an advocate for local or national issues.

      WOD> For years, Aravosis has worked as a political consultant
      WOD> for national advocacy groups and lobbyists looking to reach
      WOD> people online. In February -- while the police site was dormant
      WOD> -- Aravosis created a Web page that posted letters from gay
      WOD> rights supporters urging Mary Cheney, the vice president's
      WOD> daughter, to speak out against a constitutional amendment banning
      WOD> gay marriage. She is openly gay.

      WOD> He began focusing sharply on the police department in
      WOD> December 2002 because of what he considered to be a lackadaisical
      WOD> response to his mugging, which took place that month as he walked
      WOD> from his Adams Morgan apartment to a gym.

      WOD> Soon, he was sending out e-mails about what happened to
      WOD> others in his neighborhood. Within weeks, he had set up the Web
      WOD> site intended to highlight the damage caused by lazy police
      WOD> officers and poor law enforcement tactics. He even created a
      WOD> bulletin board so that residents could chat with one another
      WOD> about crime.

      WOD> But an unexpected thing happened. Police officers took
      WOD> control of the bulletin boards.

      WOD> They began explaining their side of issues and complaining
      WOD> about long shifts, mounds of paperwork, poor commanders and
      WOD> Kafkaesque regulations.

      WOD> As the complaints mounted, Aravosis began to shift his
      WOD> pointed commentaries from the cops on the street to the police
      WOD> administration -- especially Chief Charles H. Ramsey. He posted
      WOD> crime statistics, complained about 911 response and criticized
      WOD> the force for not solving enough homicide cases. At the same
      WOD> time, he showcased examples of good police work, posting stories
      WOD> about arrests by savvy police officers of burglars and other
      WOD> criminals plaguing the city's neighborhoods.

      WOD> For his part, Ramsey said he does not even look at the site.

      WOD> "He has a right to put up a Web site," Ramsey said. "If
      WOD> that is what he wants, a forum for that, there is nothing I can
      WOD> do about it."

      WOD> Police have yet to make an arrest in Aravosis's mugging --
      WOD> but they did make an effort. They later arrested two juveniles
      WOD> for a series of muggings in Adams Morgan and asked Aravosis to
      WOD> view the suspects in a lineup. He was unable to identify his
      WOD> attackers from among the suspects.

      WOD> After Aravosis took his break from the Web site -- a task
      WOD> he said often consumed eight hours a day -- he brought in a
      WOD> volunteer, Dominic Sale, to help revive the discussions and
      WOD> update the news. Sale, an Advisory Neighborhood Commission
      WOD> representative in Mount Pleasant, said at least one audience will
      WOD> be happy to see the site return: officers on the street.

      WOD> "They felt like they had squatters' rights to it," Sale
      WOD> said. "They have kept asking us about when it would come back."
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