As this platform finds its footing The Pennsylvania Chronicle intends to challenge authority. Too often media parrots press releases  never really connecting with, as in this case, with police or other authorities.

The Pennsylvania Chronicle reported last night Wilkes-Barre Township Police sought the identification of an individual involved in a retail theft at the local WalMart as well as giving false identification to police. 

The Pennsylvania Chronicle posed an obvious question  how could a suspect pull off giving police false identification given modern policing tools designed to thwart people fooling the police. The department answered within minutes saying, “The female in question was able to take advantage of a brief window where the system police utilized to identify a person was down for system maintenance.”

Later two residents chimed in on the Wilke-Barre Township Police Department Facebook page with their views  to the question.

Danielle Menotti wanted to know, “Does it matter how she’s found as long as she is found. You can throw it on here and someone identify her faster then any machine will. And now her face is out there and we all know what she does”

Another resident, Tommy Woods  asked, “Our Township police department is among the best in the area. Some time ago they began placing the photos of, let’s say, people of interest on Facebook, which proved to be very effective.”

For Tommy and Danielle we look to former Pennsylvania President and founding father Ben Franklin who told us, “It is the first duty of every citizen to question authority.”

The lessons of history elude too many. As the nation remains embroiled with wild allegations of federal law enforcement seeking warrants to monitor people working for presidential campaigns. In 2016 the FBI Director spoke out against a candidate exonerating her while saying he’d decided she’d done wrong entirely blowing past  Department of Justice policy usurping the authority of the Attorney General?

Justice Louis Brandeis told us, “Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman.”

What could damage any police department more than sycophancy?

In this case questions arise. The answer from Wilkes Township further raises questions.  Do important police tools go offline? Where are the backups? What else goes offline? Does it impact public safety? How is it the police don’t have systems allowing police to continue to do the job when information systems are down?

The Pennsylvania Chronicle may not ask all those questions today but how sad our fellow citizens question questioners.