TULSA, Okla. – Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin has been on the job for less than two years but one thing has bothered him for a while. Rarely, he says, does anyone ask him about crime. That important question should be on the minds of everyone, including the very politicians that are tasked with improving their respective cities but in this new day of “re-imagining” law enforcement, crime never seems to be an issue anyone cares about.
After more than twenty shootings since July 4th, Franklin had enough and in an effort to bring attention to the only thing that anyone should care about when it comes to law enforcement, he sent a “tweet” that woke up some and exposed others.
“More than 100 shots were fired in the City’s latest homicide on Saturday night. Last night more than 60 shots were fired at a shooting scene. Surely protesters are organizing against such violence!! Without much fanfare and limelight @TulsaPolice has been working the problem.”
Franklin told the Tulsa World that “The intention for that tweet was to do exactly what has taken place, and that is to bring attention to what is taking place in Tulsa with our violent crime,” Franklin said Tuesday. “I did not feel that the media release that we made earlier was strong enough.
Franklin said that he has seen how criminals have become more bold and brazen and up until now, “No one has brought any attention to it.”
While most of the response from Franklin’s message was positive and certainly should have made sense to anyone that cares about law and order, several were not pleased with what he had to say.
Some responded that the message was “divisive” and “sowed dissension in the community.”
Others said that his message was “tone deaf.”
If Twitter ever had value – and it rarely does – Franklin revealed it.
In just 44 words, Franklin proved exactly his point. There are always some that do not want crime exposed and while Franklin’s context and intent could not be more clear, others will place their own personal agenda in the middle of just about any message they see fit.
Ironically, those that complain that a police chief cares about violent crime are part of the problem of violent crime. They may not be the suspects but their silence is certainly causing violence.
Thankfully, Chief Franklin wants to end the silence and stop the violence.