Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Armstrong on Hockey Arena: Fort Apache?
I read recently that our local public utility has bought naming rights to the new hockey arena under construction in downtown Allentown. This is apparently big news. However, the bigger story that hasn’t received enough attention is that the police chief and most of the top brass will be leaving the police force in mass to take advantage of the very lucrative pension deal the city’s Democratic leaders negotiated several years ago. One might wonder what the implications of this mass departure of experienced police leadership might be to the city, its crime rate, and its residents. Outside of a single report that dryly reported the exodus of the chief and the captains, the local media remains curiously uncurious. Apparently, they don’t see a story there.
Or do they? Perhaps like many of the city’s residents they are anxious about the departures but hesitant to report further on the story because it would conflict with their “hear no evil, see no evil, report no evil” template of the shiny new buildings and real estate deals that will save the city. Interviews on and investigations into this development are being left undone, but ignoring the obvious won’t change the facts that will soon enough be apparent on the ground.
Residents have every right to be very concerned and those who still have not figured out the press’s angle on the arena might finally see for themselves how special interests shape the news in Allentown.