We are back from our break for 2023.
Just prior to the New Year, word spread around the province of the tragic killing of OPP Officer Gzregorz Pierzchala in the line of duty, just outside of Hamilton. The accused in that case have been apprehended and will face their charges in a court of law. This episode is not about the details of that case.
Instead this is about a tweet. Just after news of this tragedy spread across the province, condolences and messages of sympathy were expressed by all peoples towards Officer Pierzchala’s friends, family and colleagues. One of those messages came from the Halton Police in the form of the Thin Blue Line logo on their Twitter feed. In response to that, Indigenous journalist and former guest to the podcast Karl Dockstader tweeted a response, advocating his unease at the imagery being used. Shortly afterwards the Halton PD took down the tweet.
For many in the BIPOC community the Thin Blue Line imagery contains a lot of emotions and history to process. And yet in a time like this, that image is perceived by many in the law enforcement community as a sign of respect and honour to a fallen comrade. I wanted to chat with Karl to get his perspective on this and see where a common ground could be reached and what relations between all Canadians and their law enforcement services should look like in 2023 and beyond.
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Nicholas Paul: sound editing.
The Quadrafonics: fantastic opening and closing tunes!