SIMMONS: D.C. officials feed fear during Navy Yard crisis

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“I think the president needs to appoint a specialized panel that would have security and military experts and experts on these facilities in large cities,” Ms. Norton said Tuesday morning on CNN. “We don’t want them walled off, we want them as part of the community.”

There’s no doubt that Mrs. Norton was referring to the Homeland Security and Coast Guard digs that are springing up across the river from the Navy Yard.

The new facilities are definitely going to be walled off and part of the community — the federal community that is.

Look, local authorities conducted most of the crisis-oriented business at hand on Monday as they should, including sheltering schoolchildren in place and making certain first responders were Johnny-on-the-spot.

But making yourself part of the story, is a no-no.

When chaos and panic are both at play as they were on Monday, getting things right should be the first order of business — especially for high-profile officials.

Deborah Simmons can be reached at

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About the Author
Deborah Simmons

Deborah Simmons

Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...

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