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The time is right for a "brother" to lead the Miami police

mcneir | 12/14/2011, 7:30 a.m.

Before we are accused of being separatists, racists or other like-minded foolish notions, its important to note that Blacks in Miami, in moments when we are talking among ourselves, often vent frustrations over being treated more like Third World visitors then natural born, U.S. citizens. Take the recent Marlins debacle when they admitted that the employees they preferred needed to speak Spanish. Look at the top-ranking officials in both City and County offices most have Latin surnames. Its rare that you will encounter anyone named Raheem running City Hall at least not here in Miami. But what would be so bad about that? As the City of Miami pares down its list of candidates for police chief, we suggest that those making the decision give a serious look at the one sole Black who made the cut: Adam Burden II. Burden comes from a family of law enforcement officials, including his wife. And hes held almost every position possible within the department. Whats more, the brother is from Liberty City and Brownsville which means he wont need anyone to translate the issues and problems that continue to plague these mostly-Black communities. Interim Police Chief Manny Orosa has made some good calls since taking over the seat formerly held by Miguel Exposito, especially the decision to put more marked police cars back on the streets. Orosa is also on the short list and would seem to have the inside track to being promoted from interim status to chief. But given the number of police-involved shootings that we have witnessed over the past 16 months and with Blacks feeling left back and left out, perhaps its time that we allow for a culture shift of sorts within the Countys police department. Rumor has it that Burden was not interviewed along with the other nine candidates last week. We hope that is not true. From what we can see, Burden would make an excellent chief as long as the requirement for getting the job is not being able to speak Spanish.