Recently, there has been a (continued) spat of videos showing cops doing, lets be real: dumb ass things. Things that would get you fired right away from (almost) any other job on the face of the earth. Two things are immediately interesting to me about these recent videos. First is the silence from the 'Police Lives Matter' crowd and second, the fact that police brutality, overreach, lawbreaking, lack of common sense and general dumb ass-ery aren't contained to relations with just one skin color.
Let's start with the first example from just this week.
No warrant? No problem for this John Wayne! Just arrest people you don't like and who get in your way of doing something ILLEGAL. According to this piece of information from Bryan Quan in 2011, 'When presented the opportunity to, call your lawyer immediately. If you suspect that the officer is working beyond the scope of his authority, jurisdiction, or without authorization, you can even call the police.'
Not sure if it would have done any good, but they could have called the police ON THE POLICE. Best part is some of the security at this Hospital are also police offices, who did NOTHING to stop this guy. I treat a customer or someone in a restaurant like this, I GET FIRED.
Has this cop been fired? Are you kidding? Of course not! He's been suspended from the Blood Drawing Program and is under Internal Investigation. Code for: The Union has your back, buddy. To help prevent this from happening, the local PD reminded all officers of the laws concerning this situation. I get there are more laws than any of us can imagine, but this situation falls into a magical realm called Common Sense, which this cop clearly needs to visit.
Let's look at the second example, from just this week.
'We only kill black people.' Hey, guess what? I say that at work...I GET FIRED.
So people I know who might read this might stop talking to me if I used the words I wanted to to describe this guy, so I'll refrain myself.
Maybe this lady is worried for other reasons? Maybe she's seen videos like the one below, where the cop tased a kid into cardiac arrest, dropped him face first on to the sidewalk, busting his jaw, causing serious brain damage this kid is still dealing with.
At least this guy got fired. And four years in prison. Not sure how they got around the Union to make that happen.
To be clear, I've grown up knowing several outstanding county and state officers. Smart guys who obey the law and use common sense. A couple of years ago, people would have seen these kind of cops are 'outliers.' I'm worried about the fact that these 'outliers' are becoming more and more common.
What also worries me is the fact that these are the men entrusted with upholding the law in the United States. Yet when they break it, too often the repercussions are as simple as 'suspended without pay,' or they quit one department and go work at another. The guy who's going to jail in the video above? He worked for the Independence PD two separate times, and the KCMO PD. If I remember right, he got fired twice before this incident.
I get what PD's across the country are trying to do. Firing every cop that steps out of line means we wouldn't have near enough, and would 'undermine' people's trust in American police. There's only one problem. People already don't trust the police. And not punishing the obvious lawbreakers, who do things that would get us regular citizens fired and thrown in jail, is doing more to undermine that trust by the day.
Cops have become upholders of the law, but are not equally beholden to it. That has to stop.