Leavenworth St. Contributing Writer – Law Enforcement & BLM

Police & protesters in Minnesota
Police & protesters in Minnesota

“Ofc. Daniel Kindly” is a veteran law enforcement officer in the Omaha Metropolitan area.
He is a contributing this post to Leavenworth St.


The bombardment of the latest “caught on tape” police encounter is a near daily media occurrence, likely leaving many to wonder: “Are America’s police departments full of out of control racists. Or is something else amiss?”

In order to be an effective law enforcement professional, one must possess the difficult ability to stand back from one’s personal biases and look at an issue from a position of neutrality.

A neutral review of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement from a purely political observer, non-emotional perspective, reveals a “strategy” (intentionally crafted or otherwise) that has been admittedly effective and arguably brilliant.

BLM has a big advantage in this debate. Policing in America, by its very nature, has always been a somewhat controversial industry.

It’s an easy target.

Even the most ardent police supporters bristle when they receive a speeding ticket from a traffic cop. Even the most law abiding parent shudders at the thought of a child or grandchild being arrested with force or jailed. “Use of force”, even when performed legally and perfectly, is a distasteful thing for the average citizen to witness. Normal every day folks are understandably uneducated in its appropriate application.

Toss in a few well timed cell phone video moments saturating us via social media and (Shazam!) a “national policing crisis” is born.

But from this police professional’s perspective, the crucial issue getting lost in this emotionally fueled firestorm of hashtags, riots and pledge of allegiance kneeling sessions is a little thing called the “real problems we are facing as a community”.

The biggest problem we are facing isn’t the disproportionate rate of law enforcement contacts faced by our fellow citizens in economically challenged portion of the black community. That is simply a byproduct of the real problem. Rather the biggest problem is all of the other disproportionate rates of experience faced by too many in America’s poor black communities that create lifestyles that increase the likelihood of having a police interaction.

Poverty. Lack of education. Addiction. Break downs in traditional family structure. Concentration of high crime areas.

The non police driven statistics will make you uncomfortable.

It’s a sad reality that 72% of black children in America are being raised in single parent households, compared to 25% for the nation as a whole. Really think for a moment how that condition alone impacts children.

Nearly 4 out of 10 black American children live in poverty as compared to 2 out of 10 for the rest of the nation.

Black American teenagers experience a teen pregnancy rate double that of white teens and the black infant mortality rates in America are nearly 2 and a half times that of white infants.

In terms of the crucial education gap, black students graduate from high school at a lower rate than their fellow white, Hispanic and Asian classmates. Although black students make up 25% of our US student population, they comprise 50% of expelled students. Finally, although the disparity in college admission rates are recently closing, black students are less likely to graduate college than their fellow white students.

These are only a few the actual “disparities” that are standing in the way of many of our fellow black citizens’ quests to fully enjoy the American dream. And very notably, these disparities have absolutely nothing to do with policing.

Now does this mean that black American’s are “inferior” to other demographics? Absolutely not. The above mentioned statistical challenges are typically relegated to the poverty stricken portions of black community and are the byproduct of generational cycles of poverty pure and simple.

Are black Americans upset with these seemingly unbreakable generational cycles of poverty, educational and family challenges? Yes, and rightfully so. It’s a real national tragedy that deserves all of America’s attention.

But blaming the police (making America’s law enforcement professionals the scape goat) for this serious societal crisis distracts from the real problems. Blaming the police is nearly as nonsensical as vilifying your physician for the serious health condition that necessitates disproportionate health care or higher health care premium rates and hoping that emotional reaction will help you get better. It won’t.

If we, as a nation, do not put our emotions aside, stiffen our backs and actually face these uncomfortable challenges head-on, these problems will not improve. These problems will only get worse.

Have some police officers made mistakes? Yes.

Do police officers need to be held accountable when they make a bad faith mistake or do wrong? Yes. Of course.

Is any loss of life, even via the lawful application of deadly force, a tragedy? Yes.
But what seems to have been forgotten in this melee is that before there was a “Black Lives Matters” movement there already was a group of men and women who already espoused that philosophy, albeit without the hoopla. There has long been men and women who have been keenly aware of the real challenges our fellow poverty stricken black Americans face because they actually interacted with them daily in their homes and neighborhoods.

Before BLM was trendy, and trending, it was America’s law enforcement officers who strived to keep innocent black citizens, black women and black children safe from those in their community who would do them harm.

If black lives truly matter, it’s time to prove it by putting aside the distracting anti-police rhetoric and focusing on the real problems.


Leavenworth St. will have a new post up later today around 1pm.


  1. Anonymous says:

    Ofc. Daniel Kindley is right. Now what?

    How about re-reading (or reading, for some it will be the first time) King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” for insight into the roots of the generational, familial dysfunction that has ground our sisters & brothers into the dust?

    • White, Christian, Conservative, Taxpayer says:

      Dang…just read that letter. King was a special, special dude. The level of reasoning and intellect in that writing was off the charts. I could go on, and deeper, but I’ll leave it here…much respect for Dr. King.

      • Anonymous says:

        That letter kicks my ass every time I read it. I don’t read it enough, I don’t take it to heart enough, I don’t wrap my life around it enough. At. All. Time for me to make some changes….

  2. Sparkles says:

    Very well stated Mr. Kindly.
    This is exactly the conversation Michael Rose-Ivey was hoping to spark with his respectful protest.
    I suggest Mr. Kindly get in touch with our Governor and offer guidance relating to MRI’s outreach to the Gov’s office.
    (I’ll assume Hal Daub isn’t worth the attempted outreach and we’re all best served by allowing him to fade back into obscurity)

    Many of you asked after MRI’s actions – “okay, now what?”
    Well, Mr. Kindly has answered your question. In the best of all worlds, informed community leaders like Mr. Kindly and bright young men like MRI sit down together, share their perspectives and present to as wide an audience as possible the exact landscape Mr. Kindly has shared. Wise men and women can solve these problems, but as MRI was hoping to bring awareness to – you must first acknowledge there is a problem.

  3. Sparkles says:

    Mr. Kindly (what a great name for a police officer) points to one of the problems –
    Black American teenagers experience a teen pregnancy rate double that of white teens

    How timely.
    Published just this morning on Vox, an article titled – “The sudden, incredible decline in teen births since 2009”
    Birth control helps explain the huge decline in teen births — and might explain all of it

    So there’s one piece of the puzzle – and an important piece – that will help us solve the problem facing poor urban communities.
    Birth control and planned parenthood.

    • Anonymous says:

      Birth control and planned parenthood are fine, if the users have an educated, informed, respectful sense of their agency. What is NOT wanted is even the appearance that “we have too many of some people” and that, therefore, their existence must in anyway be controlled.

      This is what bugs me about the zero-population growth crowd. It sound enlightened until you realize the speaker is white, and is speaking about non-whites. That is racist bullshit of the highest order and must be called out as such.

      • Sparkles says:

        ” the zero-population growth crowd.”

        That a new one.. Breitbart, Beck, Alex Jones?

        There’s nothing racist about celebrating the decline of unwanted teen pregnancies.
        Your desperation is showing.

      • Anonymous says:

        Um, no. There are ZPG adverts regularly in The Christian Science Monitor, both the print & web editions. Hardly a bastion of right-wing, nutjob, conspiracy theorists.

    • bynd says:


      How like you to put your agenda out there whether right or wrong.

      From HHS gov. Between 1990 and 2010 (the most recent year for which data are available), the teen pregnancy rate declined by 51 percent—from 116.9 to 57.4 pregnancies per 1,000 teen girls.[4] According to recent national data, this decline is due to the combination of an increased percentage of adolescents who are waiting to have sexual intercourse and the increased use of contraceptives by teens.[4],[5]

      Minority women constitute only about 13% of the female population (age 15-44) in the United States, but they underwent approximately 36% of the abortions.

      According to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, black women are more than 5 times as likely as white women to have an abortion

      On average, 1,876 black babies are aborted every day in the United States.

      16 million black babies have been aborted since 1973, Since the black population in 2012 was 36 million, the loss of 16 million of what should have been 52 million is an enormous loss.

      So keep your standards low and be happy in that things are better. Yet for Black America, things are not going so well. But what do you care? You are a big picture guy.

      Oh yeah, it is your god Planned Parenthood who killed most of those 16 million. 1876 every day. Now there’s something for you to be proud of.

    • The percentage of births to black unwed mothers in 2015 was 70.9%, down from a high of 72.8% in 2010.

      The percentage of births to white unwed mothers in 2015 was 29.2%, up from 29.0% in 2010.

      So the trend isn’t changing very fast. And of course the fatherless kids born today will only become adults in 2035. That’s a long time to wait.

      • Sparkles says:

        The fact remains. now that abstinence only ignorance has been tossed into the trashheap of history, teen birth rates have plummeted to a record low.

        The most currently available federal data (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) shows that in 2015, there were 22.3 births for every 1,000 girls ages 15 to 19. That’s a 47 percent decline from the teen birthrate in 2009 — and a 64 percent decline from the teen birthrate in 1991.
        The reduction in teen births is arguably one of the biggest public health victories of the 21st century.

      • bynd says:

        but once again Sparkles, those are the numbers for all races and ages. It is not the same when factoring in such things. And quite frankly, go to North Omaha and see how many poor children there are. If you celebrate one by ignoring the other, that would be appear to be a white person’s white privileged racist attitude. Hooray for us, who cares about the minorities. And under your scenario, poor and disadvantage kids really aren’t the problem some claim it to be. Because the majority of poor children come from single parent homes.

        It also seems that you accept abortion as population control especially for minorities. Ms. Sanger would be proud.

      • Sparkles says:

        Darn! Should’ve known it was too good to be true.

        Thanks for bringing the editorial to us. Lot’s of good, bright people on both sides.

    • White, Christian, Conservative, Taxpayer says:

      The woman who founded Planned Parenthood, did so because of her abhorrence of Black people. She was, and that organization has proven to be, incredibly evil and racist.

      • Sparkles says:

        Planned Parenthood was formed in 1916.
        Women wouldn’t have the right to vote for another 4 years.
        It would be another 5 years until the Tulsa Race Riots, when thousands of whites rampaged through the black community, killing men and women, burning and looting stores and homes. More than 300 black people would be killed, 800 admitted to hospitals and more than 6,000 black residents arrested and detained.
        In 1916 Pancho Villa’s revolutionary army from Mexico took 17 American mining engineers from a train and shot 16 of them in cold blood.
        In 1916 Britain was still colonizing islands in the Pacific.

        Exactly what relevance does your comment about Margaret Sanger have to do with modern day operations of Planned Parenthood and our conversation relating to the decline of teen pregnancy?

  4. Bluejay says:

    My solution.

    1. Stop having children out of wedlock.

    2. Finish school and take it seriously.

    3. Stop using drugs.

    4. Stop committing crimes.

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