Brennan shoots dead a small-time Puerto Rican criminal and then threatens witnesses to testify that he acted in self-defense. Reilly collects a deposition from Brennan, who claims to have been acting on an informant's tip and acted in self-defense. She ended their relationship years ago after interpreting Al's surprise when she introduced him to Q&A black father as racism.
Al tries to rekindle their romance, but she rejects him because with Bobby she feels loved, protected and accepted for who and what she is, Q&A. Al, along with detectives Sam "Chappie" Chapman and Luis Valentin, has doubts about the shooting, knowing the environment of the Puerto Rican underworld.
Investigations reveal a link between Quinn and Brennan while Brennan seeks out Roger "the Dodger" Montalvo, the only witness who can disprove his testimony. Brennan tries threatening Valentin and offering to bribe Chappie for help in finding and silencing Montalvo. Meanwhile, Bobby Tex is "invited" by the Mafia to step aside as a drug dealer, as Brennan's support remains useful to them.
Bobby, in turn, begins looking for Montalvo as leverage against Brennan. He also begins shutting down his business to retire with Nancy in Puerto Rico. Bobby finds Montalvo before Brennan does and they leave for Puerto Rico where Bobby owns a mansion and a yacht. Al is summoned to share relevant information. Al, after informing Chief Deputy District Attorney Bloomenfeld, goes to the island, where it is revealed that Quinn nicknamed "Skinny" was once part of Bobby's street gang, and shot a rival gang member.
Brennan appears to be hunting down the gang's former members on Quinn's orders to erase Quinn's past, to fulfill his ambitions to run for NY State Attorney General. Brennan has no choice because Quinn holds an abuse of authority charge over him from his early years on the force. The Mafia intends to close accounts with both Q&A and Brennan, whose position is increasingly untenable.
They fail in attempting to kill Bobby, who has announced his retirement. Brennan finds Montalvo and strangles him. He then slices the boat's fuel line and waits for Bobby to arrive. A Q&A call made by Al saves Nancy, but Bobby is killed in the explosion.
Al procures an arrest warrant for Brennan but fails to catch him at the airport. He returns to the DA's office to find Brennan waiting. Brennan reveals the truth about Al's father; that he was a bagman and bigot, who was part of a "line" to keep minorities down, and shoots Chappie when he tries to intervene.
Brennan is then shot dead by another officer. Al is summoned by Quinn, who informs him that he is aware of his activities, but the Department is going to hush up the incident to avoid embarrassment given the upcoming mayoral election. When Al threatens to go to the papers, Bloomenfeld tells him that he has ways of preventing that and reminds Al that sources in the mayor's office could leak evidence of misconduct on the part of his late father, which would deny his mother her widow's service pension.
Feeling betrayed and disillusioned, Al trashes his office and resigns. He searches for Nancy, hoping she will return to him but when he finds her, she meets his marriage proposal with silence as she is mourning Bobby's death. To prepare for his Q&A in the film, Timothy Hutton went on squad-car runs with NYCPD officers in order to get an idea of the challenges they faced on the streets.
Hutton said, "In many cases the hands of the officer on the street are tied". I felt that would be the right kind of thing. He had to be on the edge of his own dissipation". State and local governments have really quite broad authority, particularly in a public health emergency like this, to issue emergency orders.
We're seeing some potential legal issues arise, though, regarding how these orders are being adopted, whether they're following the correct political process, whether it's the right part of government that's issuing the orders.
And then we're also seeing some court challenges filed arguing that these orders violate individual rights. This month, American Airlines kicked off a passenger from one of its planes after he refused to wear a mask.
And that raises the question of what businesses can require in the private sector. Did it have complete discretion? Business owners do have quite a lot of authority to require patrons and customers and employees as well to adopt face coverings as a protective measure.
Where conflicts come in is in situations where the patron, for example, perceives the mask order to be coming from the business itself rather than from government. So we're actually seeing some business owners and managers, as well, urge local governments or state governments to adopt mandatory mask requirements as a way of taking the pressure off of them.
I think a lot of business owners would like to be able to point to the government and say, "If you don't like our rules, take it up with the mayor," instead of being positioned as requiring the masks themselves. Even mask wearing has become political. Are there other examples in the history of public health and safety where we see these kinds of tensions between scientists and doctors and the public? And, you know, particular political affiliation?
Seat belt laws, motorcycle helmet laws, rules about who can sell cigarettes and where people can smoke them. Even the so-called Big Gulp ban in New York City — these public health rules are often seen as paternalistic. Mask mandates are being framed that way as well. But that's not quite right.
The message that wearing a mask protects other people isn't really getting through for some folks. So we're seeing a lot of rhetoric about how it should be a personal choice to decide to take a risk instead of focusing on how we don't know who's infected and could be spreading the virus to others.
Right now, we're seeing the virus running rampant in the United States, and we know from health officials that wearing a mask is one of the ways in which we as individuals can actually help to control this pandemic.
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