Friday, August 31, 2007

Who was that masked man? In Grand Prairie it might be a cop

The Grand Prairie Police Department has its own MySpace page, reports the Houston Chronicle. Like all MySpace pages, I suppose, it's a little self-involved, but perhaps for that reason it provides a potentially telling glimpse of the department's own self-image. Check out the most prominently featured photo (at left). We get a sniper, a masked guerrilla-looking character, and another officer giving a thumbs up dressed like he's about to be deployed in Baghdad. Does anybody think this actually reflects what a police officer's job is like every day? (I'd be curious about Jason's take on that.)

To reinforce the point, I suppose, GPPD included another recruiting image (see below) on its MySpace site depicting an officer dressed like Subcommandante Marcos. The goal of the page is recruitment, so GPPD apparently is appealing to the type of employee they're looking for - you know, tough guys who think it's loads of fun to wear masks, shoot guns and kick ass. Whoops ... oh ... wait a minute ... that sounds a lot like the crooks, doesn't it?

When the Texas Department of Public Safety took over supervision of the state's Tulia-style drug task forces, one of the first rule changes they made was to stop masked agents from participating in police actions. The public perception it reinforced and the mentality it promoted among officers, reasoned officials at the DPS Narcotics division, may have contributed to some of the cowboy antics that went in Tulia, Hearne, and elsewhere before DPS took charge. Perhaps some of those old task force officers looking to relive the good old days will wind up in Grand Prairie. To judge by their MySpace recruitment page, one supposes they'd fit right into the department's culture.


10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Someone idiot is advertising a job in Texas in the summertime with photos of employees wearing ski masks? No thanks! That looks really hot and uncomfortable on a 98 degree day in September.

Also, I understand wearing a mask on raids to protect an undercover, but in the second picture why is they guy wearing a mask around the office? Is he concealing his identity from his supervisor?

Just wondering ...

Pete Guither said...

This is the image our local task force puts on posters and billboards.

Anonymous said...

You go get 'em Johnny Law

Anonymous said...

Citizens of Texas deserve more than a "big boys and their toys" mentality from police and other public safety employees.

Public Safety is not served by young kids with an Xbox mentality. Police work is not a game and should not be promoted as such.

JT Barrie said...

Yes, they prefer ex military and our current military is shifting its focus to urban warfare. The military and police are looking to fight civilian populations. Looking to get back to the "good ole daze" when people like Al Capone and Robin Hood were not brutish thugs but heroes of the people.
The "guilty until proven innocent" mentality of Ed Meese and Alberto Gonzalez is the new wave in foreign and domestic policy. "Those people" don't deserve the protection of the law - say a lot of citizen taxpayers. "Those people" get what they deserve. There are plenty of sadistic cowboy types more than willing to "give these animals what they deserve". These people are taught that might makes right and good guys finish last. In order to "beat the bad guys" you have to "fight fire with fire" and this means that the "good guys" become indistinguishable from "the enemy". Only bleeding hearts will stand up for your rights after they get trampled on by police and overseas military.

Jason said...

I think they should have at least had a regular patrol officer (in uniform) up there since that is what the majority of people see. Houston has a good one, where officers (in different division uniforms) are lined up. That's perfect, reflects the many divisions and opportunities in HPD.

Anonymous said...

I think that most of you Gen Xers and Baby Boomers are completely missing the point! The Grand Prairie Police aren’t recruiting you! They are recruiting not only the Iraqi Freedom vet, but also the generation Y individual who has been raised on sugar and caffeine. They are just out in front where other marketing venues have been for a long time. If Volkswagen is trying to sell you tree huggers a car they are going to tell you about the great fuel economy and not the fact that it still burns fossil fuels and the fact that it has several quarts of oil in it when you pull it off the lot… This is called MARKETING!!! If I want to hire computer nerds and bloggers I will tell you about how free you are to post whatever crap you want to… That would probably get some of you some serious wood, but it gets you where they are trying to get police officers… I will have to give it to them that they aren’t just recruiting at the military bases and the college campuses that offer CJ degrees. For those of you that responded without checking out the page shame on you because they offer several pictures including the officers in their baseball uniforms… Take a deeper look and stop being so lazy as to just reiterate the ramblings of one blogger… Its there for you to look at and you should be ashamed that you are only going on a tag line… I guess you will all be running out to buy Budweiser from behind your keyboards because, damn, they offer a killer body an great friends in their advertising… Shame on all you sheep!!!

Anonymous said...

Me thinks thou doest protest too much!

sunray's wench said...

Last time I saw a Bud advert, it was being promoted by frogs and lizards.....

Anonymous said...

GESTOPOS, copper heads, code of silence