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Keeping the Peace

Fantino--a good choice for the OPP

By arthur Weinreb

Monday, October 16, 2006

It is sometimes said that given an infinite number of monkeys pounding on an infinite number of typewriters, one of them will eventually reproduce Shakespeare's Hamlet. It is therefore not surprising that given the large number of decisions that the Ontario government has to make, Dalton McGuinty would eventually make a good one. and that good decision came last week when the Ontario government announced that former Toronto police chief Julian Fantino will become the Commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police at the end of the month.

a few reasons were given for Fantino being the government's choice as the next head of the provincial police force. The official version is that the search committee found that he was the most qualified and best choice for the job. One theory being floated is that Fantino's appointment was instigated by Greg Sorbara (aka the real premier) who feared that Fantino might run for the Tories (and win hands down) against Sorbara in the next election. another reason for Fantino's appointment is that it gives McGuinty and his government a way out of the mess in Caledonia where the province have ceded authority and the rule of law to protesting natives. Whatever was in fact the real reason for the selection of Julian Fantino, his appointment will undoubtedly go a long way in restoring the rule of law in all of Ontario.

You know that the appointment is a good one because the Toronto Star didn't like it. They called the appointment of Fantino to the post of Commissioner of the OPP, "odd". In an editorial, the Star essentially said that he wasn't good enough for Toronto so therefore he isn't good enough for the province. "They [the province] need a dynamic person who rejects the authoritarian style of traditional policing and is ready to move ahead into the 21st century". He's not "forward looking" enough. Julian's not sensitive enough, or as the newspaper put it, "...Fantino had grown out of step with the increasingly diverse society that he had sworn to protect." In other words he's too much like a real cop. The Star is in favour of the status quo, where there is one law for privileged groups such as the natives who are occupying land in Caledonia and another for the rest of the province.

No doubt the Toronto Star would be happier with a commissioner in the mould of Toronto's current police chief, Bill Blair. Billy couldn't stop bragging about how he held a press conference after the arrests of 17 people on terrorism charges in early June and didn't once; NOT ONCE; did he ever refer to the accused as Muslims. Those arrested were described as being, in one of the left's favourite words, "diverse". and they were; some were short, some were tall, some were employed, some were students, some were unemployed. To illustrate how silly Blair was with his pride, he held the press conference at an Islamic centre surrounded by Muslim leaders. These leaders, of course referred to those as arrested as Muslims; after all if they were Jews, Hindus and born-again Christians, the Muslim leaders wouldn't have been there. But this is the kind of politically correct gamesmanship that the Star and its fans love and that has led to the OPP losing all semblance of control in Caledonia.

Except when the OPP are stopping and charging drivers on the highway and you happen to be one of those that are stopped, the OPP have become a complete joke. Police officers are given powers that ordinary citizens do not have for a reason. The number one function of the police is to keep the peace and the current OPP, no doubt at the direction of their political masters at Queen's Park, have lost sight of the fact that sometimes police have to use force in order to keep the peace. The result is that while the OPP issue press releases and negotiate, the lawlessness continues. If anyone can salvage the OPP from their current position, it is Julian Fantino.

Fantino will certainly have his work cut out for him. He'll have to turn the OPP back into a functioning police force before he can properly lead it.

Good luck, Julian.


Canada Free Press, CFP Editor Judi McLeod