Saturday, December 03, 2005

In Defense of Jim Kingston

Dear Editor:

For several months now I have watched that bilious buffoon Troublemaker Bob and his bumptious band of buttinskis attempt to sully the good name of my dear friend, our beloved local police chief Jim Kingston. My frustration level has increased steadily week by week as I patiently waited for Jim to refute the scurrilous charges that have been shamelessly leveled against him by those nattering ninnies of negativity.

On more than one occasion I have strongly urged Jim to vigorously defend himself. However, Jim believes that if he responded directly to these baseless accusations, it would accomplish nothing. In Jim's opinion, his accusers are not interested in the truth, they are only looking for any scrap of so-called "evidence" to pillory him with, so anything he said would be twisted out of context in an attempt to indict him. Furthermore, Jim is not only a decent, good looking, compassionate, God-fearing family man: he is also a very modest man. Accordingly, Jim is concerned that if he disclosed all of the exculpatory facts, some people might interpret this as engaging in self-promotion. That is silly, because anyone who knows Jim like I do knows that self-promotion is something he would never ever do.

Unfortunately, Jim's mind is made up: he is not going to dignify the baseless accusations leveled by Troublemaker Bob and his group of unprincipled utopians by responding to them. As a result, I have taken it upon myself to set the record straight. Together, we can focus the unblinking eye of reality on the baseless accusations that have been lodged against Jim, and prove that Jim hasn't actually done anything wrong.

First, there is the overblown check-cashing incident. Yes, Jim cashed the checks made out to the local Police Department, and yes, he took the money and kept it on his desk. However, there is nothing remotely underhanded about his actions: that money rightfully belonged to Jim. You see, when Jim began advocating acquiring Tasers for his department, he just assumed that the Police Commission would give him everything he asked for, just like they have always done. Accordingly, Jim went out and purchased Tasers for the department with his own money, intending to get reimbursed for it later from the contributions he was soliciting. That is why Jim cashed the checks and kept the money on his desk: he correctly considered that money to be a reimbursement of his previous personal expenditures on behalf of his department (that also explains why his mother-in-law referred to the checks as "personal funds"). However, the Police Commission inexplicably did not approve the use of Tasers by our local police. As a result, Jim was caught in a bind: he could save his own reputation by explaining how the Police Commission had failed to accord him the respect he has earned through his years of selfless service by deferring to his judgment that Tasers were needed, or he could avoid disparaging the Police Commission and allow the shadow of suspicion to fall on him. As usual, Jim put the feelings of others ahead of his own, and stoically accepted the unwarranted barbs that were hurled at him. Of course, the real tragedy is that Jim had intended to use the money from those checks for Christmas Care Bear, but now, thanks to Troublemaker Bob, there will be a little less joy in some local homes this holiday season. At least the Tasers Jim purchased haven't gone to waste: he has generously donated those to the Village of Broken Springs for use by their Code Enforcement officer.

Second, Troublemaker Bob has vociferously criticized Jim Kingston for his use of a "Bionic Ear" listening device. If Jim had actually used such a device to spy on members of our community, I would be in whole-hearted agreement with Troublemaker Bob on this issue. However, once again, Troublemaker Bob has taken an innocent activity and twisted it into something seemingly sinister. The facts of the situation are simple enough, although slightly embarassing. A few years ago, Jim made a terrible mistake. In a moment of near weakness, he almost succumbed to the temptations of the flesh, and engaged in a very brief incident in which he lusted after a woman not his own. The matter would have ended with the affair of the heart, except for an unfortunate twist: Jim's paramour decided that she needed to fully confess her own lust for Jim in order to move on with her life. This was a matter of grave concern to Jim, because he believed that while he was almost in flagrante delicto, he may have inadvertently disclosed the name of a confidential police informant. Deeply concerned for the safety of that informant, Jim did use an electronic eavesdropping device to monitor his ex-partner's confession, despite his extreme reluctance to violate the sanctity of the sacerdotal relationship, so that he could take the proper measures to ensure his informant's safety if that person's identity had been compromised. This was the only time Jim ever used such a device, and as always, Jim was motivated by a deep concern for the welfare of others. Furthermore, Jim has repeatedly assured me that he has no intention of ever using an electronic eavesdropping device again, so I'm certain you'll all agree with me that this is a non-issue.

A third area in which Troublemaker Bob has tried to create a mountain out of the proverbial molehill is Jim's use of the n word that rhymes with Tigger. It is true that Jim has used this word, on more than one occasion, usually repeatedly while in traffic on Friday nights. However, this in no way indicates that Jim has a prejudicial bone in his body. The truth is, Jim has fallen under the sway of the world of hip-hop music. It began innocently enough a few years back, when Jim was searching for ways to "connect" with the young people. As part of that effort to connect, Jim started listening to popular music. He began innocently enough: MC Hammer, Young MC, Vanilla Ice. However, it wasn't long before he had moved on to the hard stuff: Run DMC, Ice-T, Public Enemy, NWA, Biggie, Tupac, Snoop Dogg and Jim's all-time favorite, Eminem can be heard blaring out of the speakers of his squad car on any given day. Of course, as a result of the thousands of hours Jim has spent listening to this art form, he has subconsciously adopted the vernacular of the idiom. Predictably enough, this has resulted in Jim's vocabulary being liberally salted with terms such as "nigra", "biatch" and "ho" (Jim has also taken to referring to himself as "the real Slim Shady" and an "OG", whatever that means). However, as anyone can plainly see, Jim's frequent use of these words does not reflect an attempt to disparage black people; rather, it springs from Jim's deep-seated love of black culture and its offspring, hip-hop. As Jim himself would say, “Know what I’m sayin', dawg?”

Another item that Troublemaker Bob has been trumpeting lately involves Jim's handling of the funds for his Christmas Care Bear charity. Once again, the facts clearly exonerate Jim. To understand Jim's bookkeeping/banking practices, a little background is necessary. Jim's mentor was the late Onoyoko Township Treasurer David Loud. Jim was deeply influenced by Dave's advice (many times I've heard Jim say "it came straight from the Loud mouth" when explaining why he took a certain course of action). David Loud had an unnatural fear of banks: he was convinced that you were risking losing any funds that you deposited in one (Dave minimized this risk by splitting his deposits among several banks - the Township had deposits in banks all over the state). Clearly, the most significant thing Jim learned from David Loud was that banks, like sidewalk supervisors, were not to be trusted. So it was only natural that Jim would be reluctant to deposit the precious Christmas Care Bear funds in an unsafe and uncaring Bank. Then like a flash, the answer came to Jim: keep the money in the trunk of his patrol car! After all, where would those funds be any safer than in the trunk of an armed police officer's car? So yes, Jim did drive around with thousands of dollars in the trunk of his car, but only because he wanted to ensure that every penny of that money went to where Jim felt it would do the most good.

Finally, Troublemaker Bob has made a meal out of Jim's handling of the so-called "Daniel Shame Archery Incident": or, more specifically, out of Jim's failure to release the video tapes showing exactly what Officer Shame was doing during the period of time in question. This represents yet another instance of Jim allowing himself to be criticized rather than subject another person to ridicule. In this case, it is true that Daniel Shame was engaged in archery practice in a neighboring township while he was on duty, but he was doing so at Jim's request. Jim was concerned that during the upcoming hunting season, another rampant buck would terrorize our community in a manner similar to the incident that occurred last year. At the same time, Jim was mindful of the danger to the public posed by stray bullets if, during the heat of battle, our brave officers were forced to gun down another vicious beast. In a moment of inspiration, Jim came up with a solution: he would form an archery detail in the department. That way, the officers would have sufficient firepower to stop rampaging animals, without serious risk of collateral damage. Daniel Shame volunteered for the archery detail, and on the day in question, he was participating in a training exercise to test the viability of Jim's idea. Unfortunately, the experiment was not a stunning success: it turned out that Officer Shame couldn't hit the broadside of a barn with his bow and arrow, and that fact was clearly captured on the videotape. Rather than release the tape, and expose Officer Shame to ridicule for his pathetic skills as an archer, Jim took what by now I am sure you realize is a familiar course of action, and protected his underling. However, as a result, Troublemaker Bob has been able to try to make it appear as if Jim is hiding something sinister from the public. As you can see, that just isn't the case.

I apologize for the length of this letter, but I believe that the truth needs to be told. For too long, that baron of balderdash Troublemaker Bob has been allowed to spout an unchallenged cacophonous chorus of calumny aimed at Jim Kingston. Most decent folks in this community recognize and appreciate Jim's tireless efforts to serve everyone in our community. He has dedicated himself to seeing that the needs of the less fortunate are filled (for example, many a single mother in our community can attest to the fact that Jim has made a big difference in her life). Jim should be lauded, not criticized, for his efforts on our behalf. Enough is enough! Let's all show our support for a true hero by telling that punctilious pontificator of piffle Troublemaker Bob that we don't want to hear anymore of his shameful and baseless accusations.


Charles "Maury" Knobbe
Broken Springs Opportunists

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