JCPDBA Pres. Ed Dolan seeks “balanced discussion” in light of controversial Maryland school display
Jersey City Police Detective’s Benevolent Association President Ed Dolan is seeking a “balanced discussion” regarding police-community tension in light of a controversial art display which garnered national outrage.
National outrage regarding a controversial art display in a Maryland high school has persuaded Det. Ed Dolan, President of the Jersey City Police Detective’s Benevolent Association (JCPDBA), to speak out regarding the current state of affairs between law enforcement and the communities they serve in.
The art display, which has since been removed, features a white police officer with the obituary section of a newspaper, highlighting victims of police shootings, next to a bullet-riddled black man with his hands up and his wounds forming the stripes of the American flag.
Dolan, in a Facebook post on the JCPDBA’s page, said “I am all for the first amendment and freedom of expression,” but the display was “insulting to every Law Enforcement officer who wears the uniform and risk their lives everyday to protect the citizens and communities they serve.”
Speaking to Real Jersey City, Dolan said that “I see no benefit of this display advancing race relations between police officers and the community. It is shameful for the school to perpetuate this to our young and impressionable men and women.”
“I don’t think the display is appropriate for school or helps in fostering better relationships between the police and community.”
Referencing recent controversy in Baltimore, he added that there was a need for a “balanced conversation,” and that “we don’t know all the facts, everybody focuses on one incident, meanwhile they have one of the highest murder rates – mostly African-American on African-American crime.”
“All lives matter, Mr. Gray’s life mattered, but there’s a greater problem that’s all too often thrown at the feet of law enforcement.”
Dolan added that in 2014, “we had 118 police officers killed in the line of duty, many of them were targeted, ambushed, and executed for the uniform they wore. One of the 118 was Jersey City Detective, 23-year-old Melvin Santiago.”
Asked if he felt that Jersey City had tension between Law Enforcement and community, similar to that of Baltimore, Dolan said “absolutely not,” and credited Mayor Steven Fulop, Police Chief Philip Zacche, and Public Safety Director James Shea for focusing on addressing sensitive community needs.
“We all strive to be better and make our communities safer and this display does not advance that narrative,” said Dolan.
“I fully support all the men and women of law enforcement.”