SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

December 13, 2013

Benton: Time for action in Peabody

(Continued)

The fact is there being no language in the city charter to the contrary, the incumbent has the right, if not the obligation, to make appointments right up until the day in January that he leaves office.

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I hope New York City’s mayor-elect Bill de Blasio likes sharing the spotlight. The betting here is that his choice for police commissioner, Bill Bratton, will be getting plenty of headlines and Page Six play.

Bratton, who once served in a similar post in Boston and lived in Marblehead, had a reputation as a publicity-hound during his tenure here. Also interesting will be whether the law-enforcement veteran modifies his views on the practice of stop-and-frisk.

In contrast to the man he is replacing, de Blasio has made clear his distaste for the practice of stopping and searching people who, based simply on appearance, police suspect of being up to no good. Bratton, on the other hand, told a New Yorker writer earlier this year: “Stop-and-frisk is … one of the most fundamental practices in American policing. If cops are not doing stop-and-frisk, they are not doing their jobs,” and without it “this city (NYC) will go down the chute as fast as anything you can imagine.”

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