Dated: Wednesday January 13, 2021
The National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers has continually sought to create stronger, positive relationships between law enforcement and the community it serves, seeking to make the administration of justice more even-handed.
Yet, to bring those concepts to fruition, the community must be made to feel that law enforcement recognizes the differences between those who would harm the community and those who actively support the community’s well-being.
Unfortunately, the current President of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police Lodge # 7, John Catanzara, is apparently a person who is no better than the criminals, anarchists, segregationists and domestic terrorists who stormed the United States Capitol on Wednesday, January 6th in an unsuccessful attempt to subvert the democratic processes of our government.
Indicating his public support for those who have committed criminal acts of aggression and terrorism at the U.S. Capitol, calling them “peaceful protesters”, appears to be only the latest indication of his unworthiness to continue to hold any position of authority. Under his leadership the union itself has seemed to establish a foundational bias against those members of the community they are sworn to protect and serve, thus indicating that there is a significant void in the manner which the union and its leadership view the community.
His stated support of the acts of these domestic terrorists was, in fact, so egregious that even the National Fraternal Order of Police has sought to sanction and disagree with him. Consequently, it is past time for the removal and termination of John Catanzara as the president of FOP Lodge #7 and his employment with the Chicago Police Department.
Where his union membership is concerned, his voiced support for a violent mob of looters, vandals, anarchists and other criminals violates various sections of the union’s By-Laws, thus making it mandatory that he lose his membership and position. More specifically, it would seem that he is in direct violation of Section 6 of the standards for membership eligibility, in which it states:
Section 6. Any person who is a member of, or subscribes to, or support the principles of any organization having as its purpose the overthrow of the government of the United States by force or violence or to deny to citizens the guarantees of the Bill of Rights shall not be eligible for admission to membership in Chicago Lodge # 7, nor shall any such person hold membership in Chicago Lodge # 7. If any member is found guilty of a violation of this section after a trial in accordance with the procedures set forth in this Constitution and By-Laws, he or she shall be barred from membership in this Lodge.
Where his continued employment as a member of the Chicago Police Department is concerned, the total of 17 separate and distinct allegations of wrongdoing sustained against him by the Civilian Office of Police Accountability and under review by the Chicago Police Board, are more than sufficient grounds for his termination.
The National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers, Inc, a 501.(c).(3) non-profit, is a premier national organization representing the interests and concerns of African American, Latino and other criminal justice practitioners of color serving in law enforcement, corrections, and investigative agencies throughout the United States, and the communities in which they serve.
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