Class Warfare Blog

June 2, 2020

I Repeat . . .

Filed under: Culture,Morality,The Law — Steve Ruis @ 10:22 am
Tags: , , ,

A simple rule change is all that is needed to proscribe the actions of police officers. As I have suggested before, the actions of police need to be limited to the penalty were one convicted of the crime alleged. So, if someone is accused of passing counterfeit money, the most that infraction of the law can impose is a short stay in prison. If a police officer uses lethal force, it should be clear to everyone that that is not allowed and must be prosecuted. If someone is being arrested for the crime of passing counterfeit currency and they resist arrest, what is the penalty for resisting arrest? A short stay in jail. Anything imposed by police in excess of the punishment were the person being arrested convicted of the crime, is a violation of the law and must be prosecuted.

Using lethal force to arrest someone for jaywalking, or an equipment violation on a car is ludicrous and needs to be addressed and this way makes the police and prosecutors accountable for their decisions.

That someone is killed because he was selling cigarettes one at a time illegally, is ludicrous and no prosecutor should be given the option to “file charges against the officers involved or not.”

This is simple, easy to learn. If an officer is ignorant of the law, a quick call to dispatch can inform them of the amount of force that can be applied. (Come on, they do not have to memorize all of the penalties of all of the crimes, they just need to know which qualify for the death penalty. Any other infractions are covered by excessive force regulations.) When someone is arrested for selling single cigarettes, a scratch on the wrist from when handcuffs were applied is an acceptable amount of force. Remember these are the people who protect a detainee’s head when getting into a patrol car to be taken in to be booked. When they show extreme neglect of such care must be prosecuted.

Okay, if someone holds up a gun and seems to be going to shoot, can cops shoot back? Considering the police’s track records at shooting kids with BB guns, even an adult in a store shopping for Christmas and holding a BB gun, I think the police need to be trained to take cover and be authorized to return fire, not shoot “because I was afraid.” Being afraid and doing a good job is part of the qualifications for the job. It should not include the current “if you feel fear, open fire” dictates so often employed.

Interestingly police in other countries, some of whom are not armed with firearms, seem to do a better job at this than our police, so we know it can be done.

And, yes, all of the other recommendations about psychological testing, more training, and a national registry of police officers fired for cause being kept are all good, but I think the limits of the behavior of our police are good ones. And hiring police departments should be required to search that database before hiring.

July 7, 2016

Why Cops are Blazing Away at Black People

The Nation ran an article (Why Alton Sterling and Philando Castile Are Dead by Kai Wright) which had the subtitle “We have too much law enforcement, too deeply enmeshed in our lives, and that fact is making us less, not more safe.” Unfortunately the article misses the mark. No matter how many or few police there are, we have many, many, many examples of police officers treating white people gently, even when they are walking down the street naked or drunk with a shotgun, and Black people being treated as if they were psychopaths. (The latest case was one in which a Black man told a police officer, before he reached for his wallet to show his driver’s license, that he had a gun that was permitted, the cop drew on him and shot him dead).

The reason for this difference is simple: the cops have been programmed to consider Black males as hostile and dangerous. No, I do not deny that there are neighborhoods in which many young Black men are hostile and dangers, but the police have come to the conclusion that all young black men are hostile and dangerous, even those carrying cellos, or toys, or babies, for Pete’s sake.

This is a direct result of the elimination of Jim Crow laws.

Recall that Jim Crow laws were a result of the elimination of slavery. Those laws were supposed to keep those Black people in their place (under some White person’s boot heel?). But when the Jim Crow laws were determined to be illegal, something had to be done! (Yeah, right.) What was done was use every tiny aspect of the law to put them into jail. In the South they were even put on work gangs to pay the bill for their incarceration, which is de facto slavery.

The reason police see a Black male, armed or unarmed, and perceive them as threatening and are all to easily triggered to pulling their weapons and blazing away is that … they … are … terrified.”

To support this criminal distortion of our justice system, a campaign was waged to make sure people knew how dangerous young Black men were. Remember Super Predators? (If you can’t recall, ask Hillary Clinton, she does.) Remember the “New Black Panthers” on Fox (Sic) News?

By supplying all young Black men with a criminal record, you can then legally deny them the right to vote, and deny them jobs for which they otherwise qualify, amongst other things. Since they have no reasonable means of support, they are then tempted (some are at least) to a life of crime, which just reinforces the false narrative that got them where they were in the first place.

What I don’t understand is “What do the assholes who perpetrated this scam have against Black people?” Black people were primary brought into this country as slaves. But unlike White indentured servants, there was no end to their involuntary contract, and in addition, their children were automatically covered by the contact. All recognize this practice as being wrong now (not so much back then). Then after Black slaves were emancipated, they received nothing by grief as recompense for their forced labor, and still are receiving grief to this day.

The reason police see a Black male, armed or unarmed, and perceive them as threatening and are all too easily triggered to pulling their weapons and blazing away is that … they … are … terrified. The Brotherhood of Policemen shares stories that reinforce the “all Black males are hostile and dangerous” false narrative. Ever over-the-top story is met with another even more frightening, these stories having been collected over decades and saved to share over and over with new hirees, etc. The end result is the police treat Black people, especially young Black men, like they would a rabid dog and they often don’t hesitate to put those dogs down.

The police have been programmed by white supremacist terrorists. What else can you call the perpetrators of this hoax? They are white, think Black people are inferior, and are spreading terror. Yet they wear no hoods and are woven into our society almost invisibly.

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