Today on Salisbury News, Captain Chris O’Barsky has a post up about his friend and colleague Lt. Lorenzo Cropper. In his post he describes how Lt Cropper feels betrayed by his “brothers” in the SFD after reading the posts and comments on Albero’s site. After reading the same posts and comments I can understand why he feels this way. Captain O’Barsky openly condemns those with-in the department that have spoken adversely of Lt. Cropper. I heartily concur with the Captain, as this is not emblematical of the brotherhood we have. Who is truly at blame for this sad set of circumstances?
This entire debacle was first aired publicly on the Salisbury News BLOG operated by Joe Albero. Albero has had a notorious vendetta against the city of Salisbury for a couple of years. In general, his bias is directed at Mayor Tilghman and anything concerning the operation of the city government including most every department head and past and present members of the elected council. Albero actively seeks to exploit anything he can perceive as wrongdoing with-in the city. It is this rancorous desire to bring harm to the City that has brought so much heartache to Lt. Cropper.
First of all Albero, by his own admission knows little or nothing of the operations of the Salisbury Fire Department. Obviously someone, or possibly more than one, with-in the department was very disgruntled about the recent promotions. This person(s), being of some intelligence saw in Albero an opportunity to air their displeasure without becoming public himself or herself. This person(s) fed Albero half-truths about the promotional process and, in an acrimonious rush to magnify his perceived malfeasance of Chief See, Mayor Tilghman, and the City as a whole; Albero endeavored to exploit whatever misinformation was tossed his way. Seeing opportunity to build hatred towards the city under the guise of supporting Lt. Cropper, Albero, by ploy of his informants, played the race card. Albero further fueled the controversy by allowing anonymous comments on his BLOG. Comments he blamed almost solely on firefighters. There may have been some “bad apples” from the with-in the department posting, but those apples are the same ones that used Albero as their mouthpiece in the first place. I believe by far and large most of the comments were of Albero’s doing, either by him personally or orchestrated by him through others.
Had Albero taken a different approach to the entire promotion issue, and sought through the proper channels to glean information that would enlighten readers rather than roil emotions, I do not believe Captain O’Barsky would feel so compelled to write a post defending his friend and showing compassion for Lt. Croppers well being.
Where does the blame lie for this sad state of affairs? Surely the bulk of it is at Albero’s feet. He has tried to make everyone believe he was Lt Croppers champion while at the same time tearing down the Mayor, the Chief, and the city. His only accomplishment with all of this has to been to plant seeds of doubt in Lt. Croppers mind and soul about his co-workers and compadres. This is not a business where you can afford to have doubts about the men and women you work with. Does Albero see the pain he has caused, not only with Lt. Cropper but also with the bulk of the Salisbury Fire Department? NO!
He offers no comment on the context of Captain O’Barsky’s post. He offers only a “thank you” because the captain signed his name.
I hope and pray Lt. Cropper will rise above all this. His knowledge and experience is valuable to the citizens he so well serves. His true friends are known to him and will continue to support him. Others with-in the department that have given bad information to Albero are also to blame for Lt. Cropper’s emotional quandary and someday they will be exposed for what they really are.