Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
The Manteca Police Department does not owe anyone an apology for doing their job at the Manteca Pumpkin Fair.
The Manteca Police Department has always been ahead of the curve,when it comes to crime. Look around us in our neighboring cities (Stockton) where the crime rate is through the roof. Manteca Police have always had a jump start when it comes to warding off crime.
We have a wonderful citizens police academy, Neighborhood Watch groups, and SHARP volunteer program. This is all due to the Manteca Police Department’s view on warding off crime.
Although the motorcycle group that was asked to leave the Pumpkin Fair represented a religious group, we have rules and laws in place for the greater good. Like our school district, and the policy on gang colors, it is done in the name of safety. The motorcycle group, could have simply complied and turned their vests inside out, or just removed them. The group chose not to do this, and in fact chose not to follow the rules. The Manteca Police Department had no choice but to follow the policy, put in place for the majority of public safety. If we had someone walking around with a gun, would we say, “Don’t worry, I know what church he attends, he would never use that gun”. I think not. The bottom line is, the Manteca Police Department was just doing the job they were hired to do.
Oct. 6, 2011