I wrote on Friday, before the police murders yesterday, that NYPD and the city are inseparable. It's still true today, no matter what some people may think. We are the same thing. That's why it's so disturbing to see the police openly disrespect the mayor. We self-police in the United States. No matter how they feel, they really can't continue as police if they feel so strongly about the mayor.
We cannot have an independent police force in the city. This is the United States, with a Bill of Rights. We cannot impose constraints on the citizens of the city that would violate the Constitution. The police can protest when they're off-duty. They're Americans too. But when they're on duty they are part of the city as a whole. They have to protect opinions they don't support. They don't get a say in other people's speech. A police force that thinks otherwise is a very dangerous thing.
If they don't respect the mayor, how are they going to treat ordinary citizens?
We need leadership. We elected a leader, and the police must get behind him, as must everyone else in the city. There's really no other way it can work.