IVIVIDLY recall the early '70s when Frank Rizzo was mayor and the D.A. was F. Emmett Fitzpatrick.

A Philadelphia police officer shot and killed a suspected traffic violator while he was handcuffed. And on the front page of the Daily News was a picture of the two aforementioned public servants broadly smiling about the fact that no charges would be filed against the officer.

This has been the mind-set of the Fraternal Order of Police for as long as I can remember. For example, FOP president John McNesby is quoted as saying that "direct-action dismissals are supposed to be issued only if an officer is accused of something as serious as rape or murder."

What about selling drugs, robbing store owners while dismantling the security cameras, perjury, trumped-up charges and a litany of other crimes committed by officers while on duty?

I guess they're not "serious" enough.

The FOP's recalcitrant attitude is best articulated by McNesby's comment as relates to the new disciplinary code instituted by Ramsey on May 1. McNesby said the new code "is going to be at the bottom of a litter box pretty soon."

I strongly support the valiant efforts of Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, who believes that "there has to be a higher standard for officers."

No doubt, most of Philadelphia's finest are dedicated, honest and hardworking individuals doing a dangerous and thankless job. Nonetheless, the fact remains that, in the final analysis, former Philadelphia Police Commissioner John Timoney succinctly characterized the Philadelphia disciplinary procedure for rogue cops as "It's a [bleeping] joke!"

Albert Whitehead, Philadelphia

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Gotcha!

The parking authority's field staff needs to be trained beyond their three-phase robotic behavior of looking at license plates, meters and dashboard receipts.

With kiosks sometimes half a block away, they need to look to see if recently parked drivers are at kiosks buying parking tickets. My wife had to yell for the attention of a PPF storm trooper who had reached for her computer and advise her that her intended victim was standing at the kiosk inserting money.

Len Trower, Philadelphia

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It's not about the Eagles

With the Flyers in the finals, the Phillies, who participated in the last two World Series, in first place and facing the archrival Mets, you put Jean-Gilles on the back page?

Are Joe Banner and Howie Roseman your sports editors?

Bill Myers, Morton