First community meeting

Well, I went to my first community meeting with the Whittier Alliance – I had a great time. It was much more packed than I thought it would be, with a line to register to vote that was about 20 deep when I got there. The voting was for the a few open seats on the board of directors, which my good friend Matt Barthelemy was/is running for. Don’t know if he was elected yet or not, so stay tuned.

Also, I was very impressed with our new Chief of Police, Janee Harteau. She seems like she has a good head on her shoulders and worked as beat cop on Franklin and Chicago back when it was much rougher than it is today. When she was done speaking, I asked a buddy of mine “Did I really just applaud a cop?” I’m obviously not anti-police or anything, but it was refreshing to hear the perspective of someone who seems committed to community policing and has a solid grasp of the issues our city faces.

My only regret was that the woman sitting next to me asked a question about why the police couldn’t help her track down her laptop when it was stolen from her house. She implied that she had some kind of tracking software installed (or at least that she had an IP address that it was connecting to the internet from), and I didn’t offer to help her find out more. Seriously – I work in computer forensics and should’ve offered to lend a hand, but hopefully she got some answers. Maybe I will look into it more and see what resources are available to help citizens assist police when devices like that go missing. Obviously I know that IP address is not enough, but there should be more that people can do to recover their devices, especially when you consider the tracking software that is already installed by many manufacturers (lookin’ at you, Apple).

But no matter the outcome of this election, props to Matt for stepping up and running for an important position within the Whittier community – even if I didn’t know him personally, I felt like he was one of the top candidates for the job. I hope more people are willing to dedicate a few nights per month of their time and try to get elected to positions like this, no matter how small they seem. I know it sometimes seems like a daunting challenge and that you don’t have anything to say about the shape of your community, but that’s probably because you’ve never had the issues presented to you, and have never been in a position where you can directly have an impact.

Anyway, sappy community-love rant over, we now return you to your regularly scheduled nonsense, already in progress.

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