Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Fuck The Police

More love from the police coming outta Denver. This time with video... goodness?

First off I hope that woman is ok.

Now lets start this off on the positive. We need police, they are an invaluable part of society. In a utopia then they would become obsolete, but we obviously aren't in a utopia, so we need to face reality and admit that we need the police. (sorry to the anarchists I left a comment with earlier) But being in that oh so very real world we cannot pretend that the police are any more utopic (I might have made that word up) than those they arrest. Occasional abuse by individual officers has to be expected when people are given power over others, they're human, but there are higher ups who's job it is to keep this at a minimum. We can argue how good they are at this another day. The problem in this case isn't an individual officer taking things too far, this is a systemic disregard for civil liberties and human rights. This is important not just for these protests but for society at large, and the police themselves too. By disregarding the law they marginalize themselves, how can they be seen as a legitimate form of Law Enforcement if they fail to follow the law themselves? If the police push too far the people will push back, the people of LA should know exactly what I'm talking about, they had a little civil unrest a while back when the police pushed too far. I honestly don't think this is going to turn into an all out riot, but I do believe that the police are hurting themselves more than the protesters (at least as a whole, some of the protesters are probably in quite a bit of pain). This might sound like concern trolling but honestly I don't want riots, I want civilized discourse, but if they want to leave us with no other options, then well some shit is going to get fucked up.

Thats the big picture take (ignoring the cosmically big picture - the cosmos doesn't care) , then theres an altogether other side of this, the small picture, the what would I do if I was there scenario. Yeah I'm a bit of a feminist, equal rights, equal pay all that shit, I mean come on how can you really try to argue against that? Men should get paid more cause... we always have? I don't know. But I was raised kinda old school, lil bit o chivalry, one of the simple ones being you don't hit girls. Maybe thats a unfair double standard, but I don't hit girls. To be fair I almost never hit anyone at all, which is also how I was raised but if you have to out of defense or protecting someone who can't defend themselves then sometimes theres no option left but a little bit of violence. Now that I think about it, I've only got a mild double standard, I'd hit a woman if left with absolutely no other option, but I'd try even harder to avoid it than I would a man. If thats a double standard then I don't care, its one I plan on keeping, and passing along if I ever have kids.

So how about if you see a man take a club or a bat and knock a woman to the ground while screaming, "get down bitch!" If another man then stepped in and punched that fucker square in the face, you know what, I wouldn't be opposed. I don't see how a title or a badge changes that.

But because I can't be easy about anything, lets flip it around again. For all I know that woman had been harassing the cop, given fair warning and told to step back or force would be used. This is why diplomacy is so much harder than violence. I have a very hard time believing that such a level of force was required, maybe she had been throwing large rocks or something, but I kinda doubt it.

So what do you think?

UPDATE: forgot the link


Rob said...

I know I sound like a broken record.. but our cops should study what the French police do. They just kinda hang back and let things happen... probably because they're spiritually on the side of the protestors.

Failing that miracle, enough people have to get beaten up to sicken even corporate news. Like when Martin Luther King's followers got the crap beat out of them walking off the bridge.

You probably wouldn't see that in today's corporate news though. So far, your blog is the only coverage I've read about the DNC. So much the better for your color commentary.

Kilgore Trout said...

I don't really know much about the French tactics, but didn't they have some pretty huge riots a few years back?

I do think the cops are right to break up a protest if it gets out of line, once people descend into mob mentality thing escalate very quickly. The hard part is knowing where that line is, and from what I've seen (which is obviously very very little) these folks were still a long way off from mob status.

I think the officers on the ground have been told to keep a tight lid on things due to the widespread reports of excessive force which is why my bigger concern is with the police department itself. If they have instructed their officers to effectively ignore citizens rights then they need to be held accountable. They have broken the highest law in our country.