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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

What is an acceptable mistake?

Most times, when you watch the news, and you hear the blurb read by the anchor before they go to the story, you pretty much know what to expect, what they are going to say, and the details they are going to share with you. Last night was one of those few exceptions to that. 
I will share.

When you get to a certain age, life seems to have a "been there, done that" sort of feel. It takes a lot to really shock you and make you stand up and take notice.
Terrorist bombings. Yeah, while sad and tragic, that is nothing new. People shooting other people and then people arguing over what to do about them. Yup, been down that road many times before. Horrible floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes. Yup. Seen that episode many times. 
Policeman on the scene of a terrible flood, pretending to be rescued by other policeman, and pretending to be a passenger? Nope, can't say as I have ever seen ANYTHING like that.

A Toronto police constable is facing discipline after pretending to be one of the passengers caught on a flooded GO train last week. A damp looking man with an orange blanket — actually Nickolas Dorazio with the Major Crimes Unit — told a news crew of his “rescue.”
“I’m just glad that one of the officers there,  he actually picked me up,” Dorazio tells the news crew. “I couldn’t believe it.”

 According to the report on CBC, Dorazio was "ON DUTY and called in to help with the rescue."
The question remains what to do about it, and him? Is such a person ever really going to be suitable to be a police officer? Is this an acceptable mistake that can be overlooked and forgotten? I suppose the answer to that question will lie in what he says or does next. How will he explain out his actions, and will it be enough for the rest of us to trust him again. Because make no mistake, giving a police officer a gun and the legal right to fire it is a pretty big leap of faith on societies part.

When you hold the public trust, you can't afford to lose it. Trust is the type of thing that isn't very easy to regain. In fact, in most cases, it can't be. Once lost, it is a lost cause to try and regain it.
Even people who are known to be anything but truthful and trustworthy understand when a person has broken a sacred trust and there is no repair. Recently, I watched an episode of Mad Men where this exact situation played out.

In Season 5, Lane faces severe financial troubles and struggles to keep his balance at work. ...To cover a large tax bill, incurred when he cashes in investments to cover his partnership fee, Lane embezzles eight thousand dollars from the company by forging Don's signature on a bogus bonus payment check. Don discovers this, loses trust in Lane, and orders him to resign.

-From Wikipedia

Jared Harris, the actor who plays Lane Pryce, puts it this way.

"His explanation to Don is madness. And he crosses a line that is totally against his character. There's no going back from that."

Even for Don Draper, someone who lives on deception and is not trustworthy in any respect, he understands this is a breach of partnership that cannot be repaired.

Don Draper to Lane Pryce, 

"I'm sorry. I can't trust you." 

"Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack said the Const. Dorazio now regrets his impromptu performance."

Umm. No, he doesn't regret it. He regrets getting caught and if he hadn't got caught, he would be bragging about this with his buddies for as long as they and anyone else would listen. In fact, he was doing just that on camera at the end of the fake interview. To him, his police service is just a joke to serve his obviously fragile ego.
If he regretted it, he would have come forward BEFORE he was exposed. Policemen pulling pranks while they are on duty and being paid in a crisis situation? That is not a mistake that is acceptable and forgivable to me. He should be terminated, without pay or any severance, for breaching his oath. An oath he took to serve and protect, for which he was selfishly doing neither. 

"To see someone behave in this way was very disappointing. I don't know why people do stupid things."

-Mark Pugash, Toronto Police Services spokesman

He won't be terminated. I get that. Because that is not how the game works. The union head, as much disdain as he claims to have for this stupid, childish, selfish, reckless behavior, will defend and fight for his member to stay on the force. Because he ultimately cares for and represents the police officers, not the public.
The public does care, and they won't forget this. I know if he was walking the beat in my neighborhood,  I would organize a protest to have him removed. I don't think the streets are safe if he is on duty and is more concerned with being an actor than an officer of the law.
He should be fired. Now. Right. Fucking. Now.

"Being an officer of THE LAW, who have a higher moral obligation, that's terrible."

- A woman on the commuter train commenting on what Dorazio did.

Note: Within the link I posted above, you can see the fake interview that Dorazio gave.

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