FILAMSPEAK: Is the NYPD being disrespectful to Mayor Bill de Blasio?

Cynthia Ballenas

Cynthia Ballenas. Photo by Velzon Hizon Velez

By Cristina DC Pastor

Clearly, there is growing tension between NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYPD that many, including the Filipino American community, cannot ignore. On at least two occasions, NYPD officers turned their backs when it was the mayor’s turn to speak at the funeral services for two police officers killed in the line of duty. The police officers union blamed the deaths on de Blasio for supposedly fostering a climate where officers become targets for assassinations. De Blasio, a liberal who has called on cops to be more conscious of upholding human rights while conducting arrests, said the NYPD has committed “acts of disrespect” against the families of the slain officers, with some New Yorkers concluding, of his leadership as well. De Blasio, whose two children are biracial, has spoken out against ‘double standards’ in the police treatment of suspects based on race.

We tossed the question to members of the community and here are some interesting opinions.


Disrespectful? Absolutely. It is just a return of being disrespected and not being supported by the mayor. The mayor openly criticized the NYPD in favor of the protesters as the NYPD officers were doing their job based on the usual police arrest procedures. The NYPD is just ‘returning the favor.’ They need to sit down and have an open dialogue.

Massage therapist

I feel sorry for the family of the two officers killed, but the NYPD officers who turned their backs are being disrespectful. They have to be committed and loyal to their mayor no matter what. He is their commander-in-chief, so to speak. The NYPD union leader is just stupid. Why is he blaming the mayor, who has not committed any crime?


I see this as a conspiracy against a democratically elected mayor. Some police officers are diehard Republicans. Another angle is that some officers are becoming fascist in their mentality. It began during (Rudy) Giuliani’s time when the NYPD became more aggressive. Then in (Mike) Bloomberg’s time, they began to impose stiffer fines and penalties on, say, parking violations. Enter the progressive Mayor de Blasio, who tries to be in the middle between the NYPD and his constituents. The police are just looking for someone to blame.

IT professional

This display of defiance is disrespectful, puerile and somewhat arrogant. The mayor despite his own faults, biases or frustrations (over the Garner case) is still respecting the fallen officers. The times are tense and very emotional, but the police force is now giving more attention and importance to themselves (as individuals) than to the selflessness and ideals of the job itself. I understand their loss, but turning their backs to the mayor doesn’t solve anything. It just further says that they are better than everyone else, and nobody is above them.

Poet, fiction writer

I joined the protests to be part of an ongoing public outcry about systematic racism in the U.S. It was in the streets and plazas –where I feel such political statements made en masse belong –not in funerals, definitely not in funerals. I don’t think anyone should have the right to divert attention from the grieving family for any political agenda.

Administrative assistant edith

It’s unfortunate that NYPD cops don’t want to be criticized when they make mistakes. Turning their back every time they see Mayor de Blasio is disrespectful and immature. I hope Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD come to terms before the public loses faith and confidence on the NYPD.

Lawyer, journalist, financial planner

For the first time, we are seeing the true meaning of “silent protest” by the very public officers expected to keep the peace and order in our city. They are not being “defiant” because they have not committed anything against their civic duties. Momentarily turning their backs at the point where the mayor is about to speak is well within their constitutional guarantees of freedom of expression. When the Boss at the top of the organization is making some serious mistakes, or what the subordinates consider as errors, the men behind such executive cannot be expected to turn a blind eye and support the policies that they are against. To hold otherwise, is imposing a regime of totalitarian rule.

red line

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