Monday, July 18, 2016

Policing in pairs? We’ve got a ways to go before we reach enlightenment

The order went out to Chicago Police Department officers Sunday morning in the wake of an attack on officers in Baton Rouge, La., that left at least three cops dead and others wounded.
CPD showing their support, while watching their backs

They’re not to be going out on patrol all by their lonesome. They’re also to be in full uniform, to ensure that it is fully clear to the public who exactly the police are. Similar orders have been given to police officers in New York and Boston, to name just a couple of cities.

NOW SOME PEOPLE might think that makes the cops all the more of targets. It probably does. Although I suspect that to the kind of people inclined to want to attack officers, they’re going to know in advance exactly who they’re looking for.

If anything, this might reduce the chance of a non officer being mistaken by someone who thinks of themselves as some sort of revolutionary fighting for the rights of the people against an oppressive force.

Which is what I’m sure is the kind of cheap rhetoric we’re ultimately going to hear if any of the gunmen who attacked the officers in Louisiana Sunday morning are taken alive.

You know, the men dressed in black. And no, I don’t mean the late singer Johnny Cash!

FOR IT SEEMS that one of the gunmen was killed by cops right away, while the other two remained at large for much of the day – with the public in Baton Rouge being advised to look out for anyone black-clad. Not that any further description was given.

For it seems the people who might actually know something didn’t see nothin’, or at least that’s what they claimed when they talked to cops.

Honestly, I don’t know what to think of these latest attacks on Sunday – other than to say we shouldn’t be surprised by anything that happens these days. We have a national mood of mistrust concerning our attitude toward law enforcement personnel.
TRUMP: Too eager to mix it up in dispute?
Some of us are determined to view them as the problem, while others are quite eager to use this as an excuse to go after people whom they never trusted and have long wished they could fight back against.

IN SHORT, I’M saying I expect this kind of nonsense to continue on, and not just in Baton Rouge, where local residents remain miffed at the shooting death by police of a black man that got captured on video.

This is not a problem limited to any one city or part of the country. It is why I have refused to get as worked up as some people have over the officer now on trial in Chicago for the shooting death in 2014 of Laquan McDonald.

It’s bigger than any one incident, and it is not going to be solved with cheap rhetoric.

Which is what I think of Donald Trump, who couldn’t wait to rush out with a statement eagerly meant to support the police – claiming he expects that law and order attitudes will prevail. Eager to take sides, and I’m sure his followers will repeatedly parrot the same lines throughout the Republican National Convention being held this week in Cleveland.

PERHAPS HE THINKS we’ll rise up and start shooting people who aren’t sufficiently deferential to the police. Or maybe he’ll settle for an angry mob engaging in fisticuffs against someone who looks just a tad suspicious – from their life’s perspective.

It is a serious issue, this one of mistrust that some of us have with the police – which is really more about our racial tensions and hostilities flaring up!

As much as I wish we could be responsible and rise to a higher level, I won’t be the least bit surprised if our society continues to delve down in the muck for awhile longer.

It’s the kind of situation where I expect there’s going to be many more rounds of stupidity and ignorance that we’ll have to be ashamed of before we can finally attain a level of enlightenment in the future.


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