Been there

May 21, 2010

Since some in the media are intent on milking a recent incident
involving the local Guardian Angels I’m going to do one more post
on the subject before cruisin’ on. The local chapter has been
here since March of 2007 and I am still proud to say I’m a member
of the local chapter.

As someone who has been on a number of patrols I feel confident
that I may know a few things most people don’t. The most obvious
to me is that I’ve never met someone who was detained that didn’t
claim they were innocent. Most of these ‘innocent’ people went to
court and were found guilty.

Another is that a Guardian Angel will always use verbal conflict
resolution as a first attempt to stop a conflict. Talking down a
situation is always the preferred method.

We are trained not to react to verbal abuse and taunts. Calling
us names will not set anyone off or cause a citizens arrest. You
are welcome to your opinion.

We patrol in dangerous areas without weapons, on foot, to help
make our city safer. We do not allow anyone to go on patrol if
they are in a bad mood, using alcohol or drugs, or out of uniform.

All members do not carry handcuffs. Those who do are trained to
use them so that those getting cuffed do not get hurt. I carry
a small flashlight because it comes in handy.

You can join the Guardian Angels regardless of age, sex, or race
if you pass the background check. You cannot join if you are
openly racist or sexist, handicapped to a point you can’t walk 8
or more miles on a patrol, have a felony, or are on probation.

We have escorted little old ladies to the mini-mart if asked,
have walked elderly citizens home through rough neighborhoods,
searched for missing children, pushed stalled vehicles out of
traffic, assisted the police when asked, talked with
various civic groups and much more.

So if that makes us the bad guys, so be it.
Comments are always welcome.

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A short rant

May 20, 2010

It’s thursday and I had a rant all set to post before I changed
my mind. I appears to me that yesterday must have been the
official ‘pick on the Guardian Angels day’. We’ve seen mention in
both newspapers, on TV, and heard it on the radio.

As happens there are those among us who would trash the
group and some of the comments I’ve read online leave no
doubt what some people think of us. No Guardian Angel has
been proven guilty in a court of law yet all the armchair skeptics
have an opinion.

Nowhere in the coverage did I see mentioned that before we
graduate we have to be familiar with local law, know CPR, learn
to withstand verbal abuse, demonstrate patrol protocol, pass a
background, and physically patrol each weekend.

The Guardian Angels have been around since 1979 when Curtis
Sliwa started the group in New York. The organization has since
grown to over 140 chapters in 14 countries. The group is not
a fight club full of brawlers but a group of concerned citizens
who are tired of the direction their communities are heading
and want to make them safer. We dare to care.
Comments are always welcome.


Weekend wrap-up

April 18, 2010

This weekend has been as hectic as any I remember. This
post is about some things that happened to make it so
hectic. So, in no particular order, here’s the wrap-up.

The wife had an uncle visiting our fine city and we spent
some time with him. He was raised here but moved away
and hadn’t been back in decades. We found it interesting
that he noticed the air seemed cleaner than years ago. He
also mentioned how spread out the city had gotten and a
few one-way streets that he didn’t remember.

On the issue of crime it looks like progress is being made.
The skybridge has been a target of vandals for some
time now. During the Saturday Safety Patrol of the local
Guardian Angels 17 vandals were caught in the act. The
patrol detained those involved until police arrived on the
scene.

Since the paddy wagon was in use there was no way to
transport that many people to jail and all were issued
citations. Four were charged as adults, thirteen were
charged as juveniles, and all have a court date. Due to
the recent rise in vandalism on the Skybridge the Guardian
Angels now patrol the area more often.

Lastly we heard the cruise-in at South Park had a good
turn out and we may post some pictures tomorrow if we
get them. I’m sure more happened on the weekend but
haven’t had the time to check on them.
Comments are always welcome.


Some good news

March 23, 2010

Once again this is a day late and I’m a dollar short. A press
release in yesterday’s RI Argus is one I’m proud to post. I
would give credit to the author, but none are mentioned. Here’s
the article-

$1,000 Grant aids Guardian Angels

The Quad Cities Guardian Angels Chapter in
Davenport has received a $1,000 grant from
the Leading Ladies Giving Circle to support
the Street Patrol program. The grant will
help the Guardian Angels buy equipment needed
to strengthen and expand their patrol reach.
Currently, 15 members are enrolled in the
Quad Cities Guardian Angel Chapter that con-
ducts street patrols on Friday and Saturday
evenings and other times deemed appropriate.
“The Guardian Angels came to our community
in 2006 and have provided many benefits to
our area,” said Jill Bjerke, Giving Circle
member. “Their work is volunteer-driven, and
our grant supports their efforts to help
protect and keep our community safe.”
The Leading Ladies Giving Circle, a program
of the Community Foundation of the Great
River Bend, attend regular meetings and
discuss the needs of the community.
——————————————

A heartfelt thank you to the Leading Ladies
Giving Circle for the generous donation and
to those who made it possible.
Comments are always welcome.


A short history

March 20, 2010

The last post was about history so we’ll go for two in a row.
This post won’t have any pictures with it, just facts about a
group that shares some of it’s history with us locally.

Last month was the 31st anniversary of the International Alliance
of Guardian Angels. On February 13th, 1979, Curtis Sliwa led the
Magnificent 13 on the first patrol. The group has continued to grow
over the years to include chapters across America and in Canada,
Mexico, South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, New Zealand,
Australia, the Philippines, Japan, and Korea.

Three years ago this month Mr. Sliwa held two meetings to see if there were enough people interested in starting a Guardian Angels chapter here, and two weeks later we were training. The first group graduated on July 29th, 2007. Since then the group has received a proclamation from the city of Davenport and was awarded Start Up Chapter of the Year from the International Alliance of Guardian Angels.

The local chapter is going strong and still patrolling our streets. We’d
like to take this time to thank everyone involved. Dare to care.
Comments are always welcome.


Parking ramp tragedy

February 28, 2010

By now most have heard about the incident at the parking ramp
early this morning. The local Guardian Angels were on patrol
when they heard a woman was yelling ‘rape’ in the Harrison St.
parking ramp. The police were notified and when officers arrived
a young man took off in a car. He drove up to the top floor
hitting a few vehicles before he stopped the car and ran.

I’m not sure if anyone knows exactly what happened but at some
point the young man ended up four floors down on the sidewalk.
This is a sad story for everyone especially the young man. More
details are sure to come out and until then anything said by me
would be speculation. I was informed the fire department and ambulance arrived quickly but nothing could be done.

This is tragic on several levels as the young man died too soon, a
young lady may have been assaulted, and those who responded
may have some sleepless nights. The young man is not a suspect in the sexual assault and is just guilty of running from the police. The
Guardian Angels and Police aren’t the bad guys but were just doing
there jobs, and the Medics just answered another 911 call.

The QC Times has an updated article online with the young man’s name and what is known to this point.
Comments are always welcome.


2 quick things

August 17, 2009

The National Street Rod Association (NSRA) has been around for 40
years. I know this because I am a charter member. The rules have
always been simple; if you want to join your vehcile has to be a
1948 or earlier model. This is due to change in a big way next year.
For 2010 the new rules will allow any vehicle 30 years old or older
into the group. I personally feel this isn’t right and will no longer be
a member.

The automobile hobby is a diverse and wonderful thing
and I feel there is room for everybody. I just cannot see calling any vehicle made in 1980 a street rod. Hot rod is a term that has been generic for anything anyone thinks is fast for years and now we lose street rod too?

On a completely different note, if you have cable or satalitte TV,
tonight at 9 pm, the Biography channel is going to have a show about
the Guardian Angels. It is supposed to be filmed in Atlantic City
with Curtis Sliwa who started the group. Could be worth a look.
Comments are always welcome.