I always ask myself if the people who have such disdain for law enforcement and the men and women who work for them would ever call them if they need help.  If they did they would certainly be open to criticism of hypocrisy.  Now we have some people who appear to be upset and concerned that the Law Enforcement Command and Staff Leadership Conference will be held in the Battle Creek/Kalamazoo area.

Have you ever heard of KBS?  KBS is the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station is Michigan State University’s largest off-campus education complex and one of North America’s premier inland field stations.  It is located between Kalamazoo and Battle Creek, Michigan.  We are informed from their website that KBS has “12 faculty members, more than 20 graduate students and research associates, as well as numerous specialists and support staff”.

It appears one of their Science Coordinators, Nameer Rahman Baker, is not happy about this Law Enforcement Conference occurring at KBS.  He sent the following email out on January 21, 2022, to all involved with KBS with a subject line “CIC statement on next week's Law Enforcement Conference”.  CIC is short for The Culture and Inclusion Committee.

The email is as follows:

Dear KBS community,

As you may have seen in a recent email, KBS will be hosting a “Law Enforcement Command and Staff Leadership Conference” next week. The CIC wanted to share some additional details about this event.

Members of our community have expressed concern with this event on several grounds. Given that our institution is committed to making our community more inclusive for people of color, we find it difficult to reconcile hosting an event for a group with a long history of making certain groups of people feel targeted. Additionally, an unknown portion of attendees will be armed, including attendees who may not be a part of MSU, which is an unnerving situation. We want to make clear that we stand in solidarity with those who feel uncomfortable with this event happening at KBS.

To ensure members of our community feel supported, we want to share more details with you about the event so that anyone who is concerned can take appropriate action:

  • Who: Law enforcement officers undertaking a course offered by MSU Criminal Justice. Some will be active police officers, meaning that they will be carrying firearms on KBS grounds. As we understand, this includes both officers affiliated with MSU and non-affiliates.
  • When: The conference runs all of next week, from Monday Jan. 24, to the morning of Friday Jan. 28.
  • Where: Attendees will have access to the auditorium in the Academic Building, McCrary dining hall, and dormitories/apartments. Given that attendees are lodging at KBS, please expect attendees to be present in other outdoor spaces of KBS property (e.g., lake path).

We want to call on all faculty and supervisors to grant leniency to staff who do not feel comfortable working on KBS sites mentioned above over the next week. We hope the details provided above can help people plan for alternative scenarios, and expect supervisors will recognize that the normal work and living environment may not feel safe for some people. We urge KBS residents who are uncomfortable due to this event to reach out to the CIC and/or your coworkers to help you with anything you may need - we are available.

Please feel welcome to reach out to the CIC with any concerns you may have (co-chairs Nameer Baker…Kyle Jaynes…).

The Culture and Inclusion Committee

I have two simple questions for you Nameer and Kyle.

The first: have you or anyone in your family ever needed help and you called 911 or the police?

The second: will you or anyone in your family ever call 911 or the police if you need law enforcement help in the future?

If you answer yes to either one, are you not concerned that they will be armed and make you feel targeted?

Wait, one last question Nameer and Kyle, if you answered yes would you consider yourself a hypocrite?

I have emailed Nameer to invite him on my radio show to discuss his position as of publishing this article he has not responded.

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