Assistant City Manager Ed Zuercher later put the decision in writing. And members of the squad were told they could keep their jobs. Two men from the five-member unit already had left for other positions. They have been offered the chance to return.

It's a stunning about-face, and one I congratulate both Cavazos and the Phoenix cops for making. The CCS' work is vital to arresting and convicting those who commit violent hate crimes — the sort of felonies Frank Meeink used to commit with impunity in his youth.

I've been asked why I welcomed the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association's advocacy on behalf of the CCS, when I've knocked both PLEA and its President Mark Spencer in the past for espousing nativism and supporting bigots such as state Senator Russell Pearce.

Former neo-Nazi Frank Meeink, at a recent appearance in Phoenix.
Stephen Lemons
Former neo-Nazi Frank Meeink, at a recent appearance in Phoenix.

The reason is that the battle to save the CCS was too important. And now that CCS is safe, I can get back to blasting PLEA whenever I can.

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3 comments
R Y N O 88
R Y N O 88

Outside of my last comment; a true skinhead in the real meaning is very anti-drugs, and stays away from them and people who use. Drug users are another one of the lowest forms of life and would get the same treatment as any non white.

R Y N O 88
R Y N O 88

He traded out his people back east, worst kind of human there is. Oxygen thief!

Kerry Kenney
Kerry Kenney

I attended Frankie's talk at Changing Hands bookstore tonight and agreed with your article on the first page -- the whole American History X thing is confusing and unnecessary in a way. Frank doesn't need the movie to make him a voice worth listening too. On the second page you lost me with the judgement about violence, etc. The power of Frankie's story for me is the contribution he makes towards describing how the seeds of hatred and violence are planted in a young mind and what path they follow once planted. Frank Meeink has completed a near full circuit attitude change, beginning with accepting that another way of thinking existed and culminating in serving as a role model for deeply troubled and abused individuals. He demonstrates that personal redemption and amends are possible. Your issue with the burial a claw hammer in the head of someone you love makes it impossible for you to forgive him or buy his book is not relevant to me. I mean the claw hammer is the hate and the violence. If you are repulsed by him does that make him go away? Does that make what he has to say pointless? It is the claw hammer that gives him currency with young people. What is relevant to me is that someone as violent, abused, neglected and addicted as Frank Meeink can inspire tormented young people that they can be positive and productive. What can you do to reach out to that population? What can Frankie do? I think for the hundreds of individual acts of violence he committed he is making an active case to reach out over and over again and gentle the anger of others who might have wasted their lives on hate. I think we need Frankie's voice because he's been there. No one at Changing Hands asked Frankie if he wished his youth had been spent differently. I wonder if he would say "yes, I'm glad I was a violent Nazi skinhead because it made me the person I am today" I think he would say "I wish I had an intact family and someone that loved me and supported me so that I would have set foot on that road". I don't think he's proud. At least that is how he came across to me.Anyhow, great writing on your part I can tell Frankie made you think, I read other articles about his visit and yours was my favorite so far. Love Changing Hands, they always have the best speakers.

 
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