Friday, September 26, 2008

Security!

Security guards have the unenviable job of mostly being underpaid and over-worked. They have to be everywhere nowadays to help keep people in line. But at some places, some Security guards seems to have an attitude that differs from others at similar places.

Take the differences between the Dodgers and Angels "Field" Security guards. There are different "levels" of Security personnel. The ones I am referring to, are the ones that are posted on the Field, between the stands and the Players, in between Innings. The Angels' Security guards are smiling, and even sing "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" during the Seventh Inning stretch. The Dodger Security guards looks like they want to Tase you multiple times.

Consider this. You're in a Department store shopping, and browsing around looking at things you might want to purchase. Then suddenly you realize that the Security guard has been stalking you. And you start to believe that he thinks you're up to no good and you are there to steal things. Not rob the store at gunpoint, but to use your five-finger discount. What do you do? You leave and vow never to shop in that store ever again. Though this has never happened to me, I have known some people who have complained of having these thoughts, that they were being followed around a store for that reason.

I take you for a trip in my Way-back machine, to when I was about 13 years old. Whoa, now that's WAY back. I was walking home from Junior High School (that's Middle School for you young people), with 2 of my friends, when we happened to see something inside a gutter. We see what look like tickets, Dodger tickets. After closer inspection, my friend goes inside, and he grabs every ticket he could find. We go to his house and examine them. They turn out to be a set of 4 tickets to every Dodger game. WE HIT THE JACKPOT! Or so we thought.

Being a little naive, read STOOPID, we go to the first game with our other friend, and his Mother takes us. The seats were on the first level, really close to First Base. I remember my friend's Mother saying, "Wow, these are great seats, where did you get them?" It wasn't long after that, that Dodger Stadium Security was escorting us up to their office. While interviewing us, they brow-beat my friend's Mother, treating her like "Ma Barker," and telling her that we would all go to jail. She was in tears. My friends and I were scared, but we were actually calm about it. After all, we found the tickets, what could happen?

Well, turns out the tickets were stolen from a business in El Monte, a City about 20 miles East of where we lived. So, we had to be taken by El Monte Police to be interviewed. The El Monte Police Officers were good to us, for they knew we had nothing to do with any crime. After interviewing us separately, and finding that we all told the same story, they let us go.

After being treated like Criminals by Dodger Stadium Security, I didn't go to another Dodger game for a very long time. It had been years until I watched another game at the Stadium, and then it was only once a year for many years.

This year, a friend of mine went to a Dodger game, and her date got into a fight with someone who pushed him and caused about $60 worth of food and drink to fall and spill all over them. $60 seems like a lot of food, but it was just a couple of beers, hot dogs and peanuts. That's another story in itself. I don't condone the fighting, but this is what happened with Security. First, if you've ever seen Dodger Security in action, you know that they do NOT announce their presence by yelling, "SECURITY!" They just come in, kick ass, and escort you out the door.

My friend was watching her date fighting when all of a sudden, someone grabbed her from behind. She shook herself loose, and it happened to be Dodger Security. They took her and her date in, and charged her with assaulting a Security guard. Due to some bad timing, she had to spend a weekend in jail, and had to go through a trial to clear herself.

Last night, September 25th, I went to the final Home game at Dodger Stadium. By the afternoon before the game, the Dodgers had clinched the National League West Title, due to a loss by the Arizona Diamondbacks. People at the game were festive, and happy that the Dodgers were going to the playoffs for the first time in 4 years.

One of the reasons for the Dodgers winning, was the acquisition of Manny Ramirez from the Boston Red Soxs. I was sitting 4 rows back from the Field on the first level. Manny was about 50 feet away. As usual, between Innings, while warming up by playing catch, he would throw the the ball into the stands for the fans.

I saw him nodding at some women sitting one section away from me in the First row, and pointing to them. I told my friend that I bet he was going to throw them the ball the next time he had a chance. He did, and it just happened to be the same Inning that Manny was replaced. The Dodgers were replacing their Starters with Reserves, and announcing their departure to applauding fans. So, after throwing the ball to these people, he ran off the field.

I wonder if he witnessed what happened next. If he did, I don't think he would have liked what he saw.

One of the women tried to catch the ball in her glove, but it was a little bit in front and the ball fell out out of her glove. Because she was leaning forward, she fell over the railing and onto the field. The ball must have rolled away, towards where I was sitting and she must have gone after it. The Field Security MAN, started to run full speed towards us. I couldn't see what happened because the woman was SHORTER than the "wall" separating the seats from the field. But I saw the Security MAN do a Hockey style "check," and shoved her into the wall. Then there was a struggle, and another Security guard came over to help out.

Another friend, who was sitting in another area with a full view of what happened, told me that after she was "checked" into the wall, the Security guard grabbed her, and body slammed her to the ground. Then the other guard handcuffed her, and they both escorted her away. Most of us sitting there could not see what happened to the woman, and some of us didn't even know that it was a woman to begin with. But we knew whoever it was, got it good. It wasn't until they were all in plain sight walking through the Outfield gates, that we saw two tall men and a short chubby woman being led away. I was appalled.

The Security guard was heckled the rest of the night by people all around me.

If this was the LAPD, the Public would be calling for this guy's head on a platter. But you never hear about this stuff do you? I believe there is much more abuse of power and inappropriate use of force by Dodger Stadium Security guards then reported, though I can't prove it.

Nevertheless, what happened to that woman was disgusting. And I think it may be the last time I go to a Dodger game. No matter how well they are doing.

Oh, don't get me wrong, I don't hate the Dodgers team. But when you hire Nazis to do your dirty work, someone has to be accountable for it.

6 comments:

PuPCakes said...

i hired them to keep the chicks away from all my boyfriends... sorry.

Ninja said...

Aren't you a BOY dog??

PuPCakes said...

what? canines can't be bi-sexual?

Ninja said...

That's a lot of boyfriends, I don't think that makes you bi-sexual...

Greg said...

It's rarely the best and brightest of society who get hired as private security.

Ninja said...

Although some Security Companies might not hire the best people, and I have known one who should not have been one, most Security Guards are as I said, over worked, and under paid. Much like the unarmed Guard that was recently shot and killed in LA.

But Dodger Security is Employed by the Dodgers, not under contract from another Company, as far as I know. The thing that is lacking here is Training, and Accountability.