Happy Monday, boys and girls! It’s time to play Blue’s Clues!
You’ve never heard of Blue’s Clues?
OMG! You are so missing out! It’s the coolest show ever!
In every episode, a mystery is presented by the host named Steve to an audience of preschoolers, who try to solve the puzzle before the show ends.
During the show, a dog named Blue leaves three clues marked by a big blue paw print.
Whenever the paw print appears on the set, the kids in the audience scream, “A CLUE! A CLUE!”
Steve and the kids use Blue’s Clues to solve the puzzle. At the end of the episode, the answer is revealed.
Alrighty then, boys and girls. Let’s try to solve a real life Blue’s Clues puzzle!
On March 5, 2015, North Miami Police Chief Leonard Burgess sent a mysterious email to City Manager Aleem Ghany and two of his staff members. The Chief copied the Mayor and Council.
There’s no mystery why Chief Burgess sent out that email. Aside from defending himself against complaints about North Miami’s high crime rate under his watch, Chief Burgess also felt compelled to address an intimation that he was involved in a sexual harassment complaint.
As we all know by now, Chief Leonard Burgess was indeed the subject of a sexual harassment complaint.
In his email, however, he denied any “involvement in this SH incident … investigated by MDPA IA Bureau.”
That part is true. The Miami-Dade Police Department’s Internal Affairs bureau didn’t investigate Burgess.
That was a job for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement!
The real mystery here is why three individuals, who have absolutely nothing to do with the Police Department, were included in the Chief’s email in the first place.
Ooh, a challenge!
Okay, kids. Let’s get out our Handy Dandy Notebooks and solve the puzzle using the three (appropriately named) Blue’s Clues!
Our first mission is to decipher why City Clerk Michael Etienne was copied with the Chief’s email. Let’s start with some background.
North Miami is one of only six or seven cities in the state of Florida, and the only one in Miami-Dade County, where the city clerk is an elected position. Typically, the clerk is one of three employees hired by a city’s commission or council. The other two are the city manager and the city attorney.
According to the Charter of the City of North Miami, in order to run for the office of city clerk, one doesn’t need any special qualifications other than to be a registered voter and a North Miami resident.
No specialized training or certification is required.
As such, pretty much any Joe Schmo off the street can potentially occupy this seat.
Needless to say, this is a dangerous policy on so many levels.
For one thing, I have no idea if North Miami City Clerk Michael Etienne is a Certified Municipal Clerk, as defined by the Florida Association of City Clerks. I will assume he’s not, however, since he doesn’t list such a certification in his biography on the city’s website.
Even worse, this elected official answers to no one at City Hall.
He has the ability to run amok.
Unsupervised and unchecked.
And he usually does.
As such, Michael Etienne does and says pretty much what he wants without recourse.
Sure, he could be voted out, but no one ever challenges him. With a nice paycheck and a job that requires a minimum amount of time or expertise in pretty much anything, chances are Michael Etienne owns this seat for life.
By including Michael Etienne in the email chain, the Chief recruited him as the head cheerleader for Team Burgess.
Michael Etienne quickly jumped to the defense of his new BFF by responding with an email of his own, and clicking “reply all.”
In this love letter to the Chief, Michael also gushed, “Elected colleagues and Aleem, take it from me, WE HAVE AN AWESOME CHIEF!”
He then exclaimed his “expertise” in crime statistics and wrote, “I can attest that our crime rate index is low compared to our counter parts (taking average income of the residents into account and other socio-economic stats).”
To paraphrase Michael’s Fuzzy Crime Stat Math Logic, “North Miami’s crime rate is the same as that of other cities our size … unless you take into account that our residents are poorer than theirs.”
That’s like saying, “I’ve never been the subject of a sexual harassment complaint with the county … unless you count the one filed with the FDLE.”
Like the political animals they are, the Chief and the Clerk both excel at double speak and sleight of hand chicanery.
Yes, folks, it’s a trick. They are trying to pull the wool over your eyes.
Typical politicians both.
Another recipient of Chief Burgess’ email is North Miami Budget Director Arthur Sorey.
Let’s put on our thinking caps and ask ourselves, “Why would the city’s Budget Director have anything to do with Police Department crime statistics?”
At first glimpse, there appears to be no method behind the Chief’s madness. However, last week I received a Blue’s Clue in an email!
An anonymous tipster wrote, “Budget Director Arthur “Duke” Sorey has been approached by Scott Galvin in replacing City Manger Aleem Ghany.”
Hmmm, isn’t that interesting?
By now, it’s common knowledge that City Manager Aleem Ghany has been under pressure to fire Chief Burgess.
It stands to reason that it would be in the Chief’s best interest to get rid of Aleem before that happens.
If that’s the case, and if the info leaked by my “source” is correct (I have good reason to believe it’s credible), then it sure looks like Councilman Scott Galvin and Police Chief Leonard Burgess are conspiring to replace Aleem Ghany with Arthur “Duke” Sorey for City Manager.
Aha! The plot thickens!
I knew there was more than just Fuzzy Math going on behind the scenes at the PD!
The third mysterious recipient of the Chief’s email is Derrick Corker, the Parks and Recreation Manager.
This is one clue that has me completely stymied. I can’t even begin to fathom why the Parks & Rec Manager has any interest whatsoever in the Police Department.
This is where I need your help, boys and girls.
If any of you can solve the mystery of the third Blue’s Clue, feel free to keep those anonymous tips coming!
I’ll be waiting right here by the mailbox!
“Spreading the Wealth”