Boston Police Unions Demand Long Guns And More Protection In An Angry Letter To The Mayor

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Boston has a remarkably low violent crime rate for a city of its size. In 2014, the FBI-reported crime rate fell between the absolutely bustling metropolises of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and Jacksonville, Florida. Regardless, tensions are high after the recent uptick in police shootings, and the Boston Police unions aren’t taking any chances.

In a letter addressed to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and Police Commissioner William Evans, several police unions called for armor and rifles for patrolmen and accused the city of not doing enough to protect officers. The letter’s demands (and “demand” is capitalized several times throughout) include riot gear, armor, and increased weaponry due to what they see as a climate of hatred and anti-police sentiment: “You can sing [kumbaya] ’til the cows come home, but that won’t stop a Rifle Round Aimed at a Police Officer’s Chest.”

The letter went on to accuse President Barack Obama of instigating anti-police violence: “We live in a world where a sitting President has basically ‘fanned the flames of Police hatred’ with political rhetoric and now a sitting Governor is politically afraid to speak,” they wrote.

Mayor Walsh responded to the letter in an interview with ABC Boston, saying that many of the demands are already being met: “Well, we’re upgrading all of the equipment, and I don’t know what the right numbers of officers is. I know there’s a number, a federal mandate. I think that’s an argument the police have had for a long time in this city,” he said.

The mayor also added that the attempt to get more bullet-proof vests for the city’s officers is being held up by the fact that the unions have failed to agree to a policy requiring officers to wear them.

(Via Boston Herald & WCVB in Boston)