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Chief Koval's Blog

Words Matter. Words Have Power.

July 26, 2016 1:39 PM

From time to time, I have yielded my blog to have someone from the Department weigh in on a topical issue or upcoming event.  This week's offering comes as a result of a recent Common Council meeting in which alders heard from constituents on a symbolic petition drive drafted in support of the MPD.  This resolution resulted in hours of testimony and certainly reflect the fact that courageous conversations are critically important to a better understanding of one another's struggles and apprehensions.  Regrettably, sometimes the tone and mean-spirited rhetoric can be hurtful and counter-productive.  This week's column is authored by Detective Angela Kamoske who lends a perspective that synthesizes many of our voices as we strive to advance the dialogue and reach for common ground . . - Chief Koval


Words matter.  Words have power.

We witnessed this at the Common Council meeting last Tuesday evening.  Several Madison police officers spoke to the council about a petition that had been brought forth.  But for those officers, and for the countless others they were representing, it was about more than speaking about a petition, it was about using their words.  Using their words to humanize.   To connect.  To reach out to all members of the community, even those with guarded hands and guarded hearts, who may not be ready to reach back.  These officers embody the mission of this department and embrace its core values of service, dignity, integrity and leadership, and are dedicated to working on community partnerships, even in the most difficult of times. 

Words matter.  Words have power.

We also heard the written words of two Madison police officers read aloud to the council.  These words were degrading, insulting and insensitive with their only objective being to mock and insult. 

Words matter.  Words have power.

When words by two are written so carelessly on a page, those words can be seen as speaking for an organization.  A group.  A culture.  Those words can confirm a critic's belief and dishearten a supporter's.

Those words do not represent us, the members of the Madison Police Department.  Those words are not our voice.  They are deplorable.  They are unacceptable.  Period.

We have work to do.  We have trust to rebuild.  We have to be open to having genuine and meaningful dialogue, especially with those who have experienced life through lenses different than our own. 

Words matter.  Words have power.  Use them to lift each other up, not tear each other down.

This blog was authored by Detective Angela Kamoske who has been employed with the Madison Police Department for 18 years.  She is currently assigned to the South District, where she investigates sensitive crimes. 




Posted by: Chief Koval

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