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Commentary Last Updated: Jan 4th, 2008 - 00:45:55

A riposte to �Criminals with badges: How the police create crimes�
By Jerry Mazza
Online Journal Associate Editor

Jan 4, 2008, 00:18

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Dear Paul Craig Roberts. In your Jan 3, 2008 article, you said: �Take heed, ye red-blooded American males. The police are operating a new sting designed to destroy your life.

�The police are planting attractive women half-naked in parks. They entice passing males, engage them in conversation, lay back, spread their legs and rest their feet on the men's shoulders.

�After being as friendly and suggestive as possible, they ask to see your penis.

�Don't show it to them. You are being filmed by police. If you show your penis, you will be arrested as a pervert.� Ah c�mon, Mr. Roberts, you didn�t write this on New Year�s Eve, did you, perhaps a bit too much bubbly down the old hatch?

Having spent 69 (no sexual innuendo intended) years living in New York City, no one, females or males, have ever performed the above actions in my direction, and folks tell me I am and have been a reasonably attractive guy. Of course, there have been a few �easies� in my walk through the dark wood of error, �Hello, do you come here often, yes, and off to the bedroom.� But no one was following with a camera, steadicam, or long-lens chopper.

On the other hand, as an open-eyed New Yorker, I can guide you to certain streets and muttering retreats where anything goes. For instance, the lower West 20s, along 10th Avenue have been a hooker haven for years. The ladies are clad only in items from Victoria�s Secret to fulfill the buyer�s fantasies with just a look, and hopefully more. In winter, a fur jacket, or full-length coat, keeps them warm between tricks and flashing their heat.

But they are pros, prostitutes if you will, whose first question will be, �Do you wanta go out?� And if you say yes, you�ll get the dating price list, from A to Z. This is called prostitution, a thriving (if not throbbing) industry in New York City.

I�m sure the cops (as well as the pimps and Mafia) are getting a piece of the action for looking the other way, but so it goes in Gotham and any big city, including LA�s Sunset Boulevard, the boardwalk (and hotels) of Atlantic City, et al, and the local bars of most of our major hotels. People will be people.

In fact, years ago when my wife, first two children and I resided on West 85th Street between Broadway and West End Ave, the Broadway corner featured a stylish men�s store, and in front of the chic dummies dressed to the nines, were some chic hookers dressed in less than the nines. It was something out of Genet or Bertolt Brecht.

The kids got a kick out of them. The hookers wandered in their short-shorts and gauzy tops from West 85th Street up Broadway to 96th Street, the cut-off point between the gentrified co-ops and the renter�s no-man�s land that eventually gentrified as well. The cops shuttled the �ladies of the evening� up and farther down Broadway as the complaints came in or abated. Ironically, most of the girls� trade were middle-aged men from Jersey in their cars, escaping whatever suburban hells they�d moved to.

The girl�s opener was consistently �wanna go out?� Of course, their patrons included locals as well, who shuttled them off to single room occupancy hotels or perhaps more showy settings.

Today, even in summer when New York is a virtual cornucopia of luscious womanhood barely clad, I have never witnessed such a bare-breasted, brazen come on, nor have I seen anyone else so propositioned. Perhaps in Berliner Park in Columbus, Ohio, it�s possible. But then it�s Ohio, where Bush managed to turn some marvelous tricks hacking the vote a number of times and no one caught him with his Dick out.

Also, there are pockets like the above mentioned around and about New York, in the hotel districts, side streets, and tourist potholes. You can�t miss them.

As to your second assertion, I believe it is both true and pathetic: �The corrupt New York Police Department ensnared 300 innocents during 2007 via �Operation Lucky Bag.� Police place IPods, cell phones, wallets, and shopping bags containing items in New York subway stations. The items appear to be dropped, lost, or abandoned. Anyone who picks up one of the planted items is arrested for �subway grand larceny.�

�This particular police atrocity is in conflict with New York law, which allows someone who finds property 10 days to turn it in to the police or to find the owner.

�The corrupt NYPD says that the property left as bait has not been abandoned, but is the property actively left by an officer who is still in the vicinity."

Yet, 300 innocents out of several million people riding the subways each day are not great numbers for New York�s finest. So I don�t find �Op Lucky Bag� nearly as pernicious as the number and frequency of police shootings and murders of black and Hispanic youth in Harlem, Bed Sty, El Barrio, Alphabet City, in the depths of North Brooklyn and South Bronx, the far reaches of Queens and Staten Island on a nearly weekly basis for as long as I can remember.

I�m frankly sick of the police cop-outs that they thought the victim had a gun that turned out to be his beeper or cellphone. That after the victim swallowed up to 40 or 50 slugs shot by ill-trained, trigger happy drop-outs in police blue, or worse, veterans of many years. I�m appalled by the carnage of �law enforcement� bloodied streets on an on-going basis.

Moreover, I�m disgusted by the over-presence of cops at anything that approaches a political rally, in which some activist group is trying to express their right to freedom of expression. This going back to the awful 2004 Republican National Convention, during which thousands of protestors (perfectly within their rights) where trapped in orange nets and carried off in Third Reich-like vans to �warehouses� to await the spurious justice of the �system.�

What�s more, no less than billionaire Mayor Mike, now poised to jump into the national election as an Independent (creep), denied the use of the Sheep Meadow and other parts of Central Park for antiwar rallies on the basis that we would �ruin the grass.� This while the nation was being ruined by Iraq�s debacle and the crop of another generation cut down in battle as it cut down the Iraqis, Afghans, and others mercilessly, the uber police force so to speak.

To them all, from the mayor to the president, I show them my penis for the obscenity of nearly eight years of brutality, the rape of the Constitution, our Civil Rights, the Geneva Conventions, and the very fabric of our justice system, not to mention the totally unconscionable Inside Job of 9/11, the inciting incident of this mass, historical indecency. On the above points I believe we are in total agreement. And, as a life-long New Yorker, I thank you for your concern with the wasted quality of life in our once-fair city.

Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York City. Reach him at

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