Josh Lafazan's Bad Ideas
Election years often bring out the worst in politicians, and this year is proving that as applied to the north shore Nassau County Legislator Joshua Lafazan (D-Syosset). Lafazan burst upon the scene a decade ago as a fresh-faced 17-year-old kid - who ran against entrenched incumbents on the Syosset School Board and swept into office. Lafazan juggled college, and then graduate school, with elected office, but the narrative of the "kid-politician" who still "lives in his parents' basement" has graced the local media, and even earned a glowing article in the New York Times. Lafazan was elected to the Nassau Legislature in 2017 as a Democrat, defeating Oyster Bay's Don MacKenzie. But a decade in elected office seems more to have corrupted, rather than matured, the now 27-year-old "kid-politician." During 2020, Lafazan aligned strongly with the BLM movement that was terrorizing much of the country. He appeared at BLM rallies that demanded "Defund the Police". He boycotted "Back the Blue" rallies. He coordinated with the "Young Communists." He took the lead to re-name county buildings after radical Left US Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm. The Brooklyn congresswoman was the second African-American elected to Congress from New York, but otherwise had little connection to Nassau or Long Island. It was a pure race pander. Lafazan made his bed with the radical Left. Now - fearing an election loss - Lafazan has reversed policies, tacked right, and embraced the police. He recently introduced a bill to make police officers a "protected class." The effect of that would be to give police unions the power to sue - and potentially arrest - anyone who flies a complaint alleging police misconduct - even beatings or violence. Even for this "pro-police" newspaper - that is a step too far. 99% of Long Island cops are decent, hard-working dedicated professionals. But there are examples of very bad apples - just look at Suffolk Police Chief James Burke and his mentor Suffolk DA Thomas Spota - both now convicted federal federal felons. They ran Suffolk law enforcement like a violent mafia - and tarnished - and endangered - all Long Island police officers with their criminality and corruption. Under Lafazan's bill, those bad apples would have been empowered to harass and attack their victims. Lafazan's fellow Democrats are horrified by his ever-changing spots. Most prominent is Tracey Edwards - a former Huntington Town Councilwoman and the NAACP Long Island Director. She denounced Lafazan this week for his latest bill and demanded he retract it. Edwards is right. Lafazan should not be proposing laws that cut down people's civil rights - and discourage good policing. Long Island has some of the best police in the nation. It is a sign of Lafazan's immaturity and political expediency that he would try to damage all that - just for his momentary political advantage.