The Rule of law must be respected, without it we have no buffer between us and those who would us harm. It is a frightening irony when those we employ to stand between us and those who would bring harm to us, are the ones doing harm to us.
We must ask ourselves “why is it that Police Officers feel empowered to kill a member of the public over some misdemeanor offense”?
Every person running for office in the United States from Presidential candidates to dog-catcher runs on a law-and-order platform. It is so critical that a juiced-up-cop wrongly harassed and assaulted an eminent Ivy League Professor, widespread condemnation erupted from many quarters including the President of the United States. In the end the cop gets invited to the White House for a beer summit.
What is it which makes the American cop untouchable? What gives the American cop the invincible, untouchable persona?
As a former Law Enforcement official myself, I understand the difficulties of the job. I also understand that I am not a God ! Police officers in the United States do not see themselves as peace officers. In fact watching cops in action in instance after instance, convinces me that cops deliberately disrespect some citizens with the express intent of escalating an issue which if dealt with calmly and professionally would simply dissipate.
There are Ivory Tower dwellers who believe that Urban dwellers hate cops and are opposed to the rule of law. Recently one reporter went on an irrational rant about young black men after a young cop was killed. The Network had the good sense to discipline him. Having been around inner cities all my adult life , I must confess there are certain hostilities to Law Enforcement. This is true whether you are in New York or Rio, DC or Kingston.
Police Officers must be trained to understand these issues and deal with them appropriately. Most of these hostilities come from some involved in criminal behavior. However the Police are not blameless. Much of the hostilities directed at them are of their own making. This too runs the geographical gamut. What is true of many Police Departments , having spoken to friends who are Police Officers, is that officers are actually encouraged to have acrimonious relationships with minority communities.
What’s shocking is that some Department heads actually encourage officers to be cold and disrespectful to even law abiding members of minority communities. Let’s not kid ourselves, when large quantities of black and brown men are locked away in the prison industrial complex, America’s race problems are half solved. Prisons are big businesses , many are run by private sector companies which kick back huge sums of cash to the political campaigns of those dogs barking the loudest on the law and order issue.
You do see how this cycle is perpetuated? Cops and their Unions know this. So the central question then becomes,“who will bell the cat”? The simple answer is no one! This is an issue so toxic and explosive , even the White House will not get involved in a local matter involving Police Departments. At least not a White House where the occupant is a black President.
Forty three year old Staten Island resident Eric Garner was killed by NYPD cops who placed him in a choke-hold, supposedly to arrest him for selling un-taxed cigarettes. The police claimed Garner was previously arrested for doing the same thing.
Whether or not he was arrested before for selling cigarettes, why was it necessary to place him in a choke hold to effect an arrest? They knew him, why was a ticket not appropriate? The offence was not a felony! In fact from some accounts, no offense was even committed.
Why are these tattooed Black-water-type mercenaries being allowed to interact with the black community? I don’t see any cops looking like this in some other communities. Look it is important that if you are told you are under arrest that you submit to being arrested. But is it necessary to pile onto someone pressing his head into the pavement for selling un-taxed cigarettes? These are the questions we must ask! Or is the arrest justified , irrespective of the cost, even at the cost of a life lost? Are these Pyrrhic arrests that important to the States and Municipalities?
It is a tragic irony when death becomes the penalty for a minor infraction. When absolute compliance with the law becomes so fundamental a shackle that it matters not whether you live or die. It is tyranny when the State becomes the greatest entity of fear, it is time to be very fearful.