Police Commission President Robert M. Talcott's remark that common sense would prevail and prevent the mixing of religion and police department functions was rather amusing. With apologies to H.L. Mencken, "no one ever went broke underestimating the common sense of a police manager." Police Department "managers," that is officers of the rank of captain and above, did not reach their positions by exhibiting common sense.
They achieved their rank by following orders, and by never taking a chance their actions might be against their superiors' wishes. This last phrase was used by your paper to describe Adm. John Poindexter's actions. It not only applies to Poindexter and high ranking police officials but to practically any person who wishes to rise to high rank in a bureaucracy.
I see nothing wrong in the fact that Vernon has surrounded himself with born-again Christians. After all Vernon and countless other staff officers have surrounded themselves with yes men over the years. Vernon is just more innovative.
If he were a Druid instead, the Angeles National Forest would be aswarm with hordes of aspiring captains and commanders and local travel agents would be swamped with questions about trips to Stonehenge.
I retired from the Police Department after having survived 26 years of "management."