When I first heard of Tony Fein’s arrest, last night, it didn’t really merit much response. Obviously, I’d never heard of Fein, before Ravens Training Camp and the elements of the incident were not disclosed.
Today, information regarding the specific nature of Fein’s contact with police is becoming public knowledge. While it’s best to reserve any judgement or opinion of the incident, it’s difficult to do. In fairness to both Tony Fein and the Baltimore Police Department, we shouldn’t jump to conclusions.
However, there are extenuating factors to consider …..
• Tony Fein (for the next couple days, anyway) is a member of the Baltimore Ravens. It’s gonna be newsworthy and inspire reaction – immediately.
• Baltimore’s Inner Harbor area has become a “Zero Tolerance” zone for law enforcement, as it relates to violent crime. Numerous incidents, including a shooting, at Harborplace, last weekend, have led to increased patrols.
• It was a very “public” incident. It’s bound to surface on Youtube and other internet sites.
Over the next few hours, I’m gonna dig and learn as much as possible, via the Baltimore City Police Department’s Public Information Office. I really want to learn the details of the case, prior to going in-depth with my points.
However, for the time being, I think it’s fair to consider the following …..
• Are Baltimore Police garnering an increased number of citizen complaints, regarding “aggressive policing,” in the Inner Harbor area?
• Has Tony Fein encountered previous run-ins with law enforcement?
• Are there independent witness accounts?
While I respect and feel indebted to each American who has served this nation through military service, I do not feel an obligation to excuse criminal behavior as a result of their personal experiences. In fact, I’m certain they know the differences between right and wrong.
I’m also concerned about the prospective mental and emotional capacities of anyone who cannot abide by lawful direction, when confronted by an authority figure. We all know the drill, if the police give us LAWFUL direction, we do it.
This means STANDING UP, if asked to do so. If you disagree, you’ll probably end up in handcuffs someday. At the same time, I’m not suggesting police officers have blanket discretion to do as they see fit. But, remember, they didn’t just “show up” at Johnny Rockets !!!!
I’ll have more to say about this incident with Nestor, this afternoon, on Limited Access. Until then, I have some investigating to do.
And, take this piece of advice ……
If you don’t like my Orioles thoughts, FINE. If you don’t like my spin on the Ravens, FINE. But, I can really help you with any experiences with police officers.
Just do as they ask. Nothing more. Nothing less. It’s simple and the rest of your day or evening will go smoothly. I have a pretty strong suspicion we’ll learn that Tony Fein could’ve avoided this entire mess, if he just did as they asked.