How Police Officers Undermine the Rule of Law
Written by Winter Trabex.
Samantha Ramsey, a resident of the state of Kentucky, had an interesting day. One day, she went to a party, one in which she managed to consume alcohol and marijuana (supposedly). While she was trying to leave the party, Deputy Tyler Brockman of Boone County jumped in front of the car and started shooting. Why he started shooting at a car with four passengers in it without giving any warnings, is unknown. Nor is it known why Brockman felt his life was in danger to the point that he felt his only choice was to pull his gun and start shooting. He, like many other police officers in America, have become trigger-happy.
Nor is it clear why Officer Christopher Warren of Beavertown, Oregon decided to rape a six-year-old girl with a pencil. Though he lied to an internal investigation about sexual assault, he was rehired. That is, until 2013, when he was fired for being involved in food stamp fraud. Somehow, Officer Warren is exempt from being a part of the sex offender registry. No listing appears for him in Oregon, the state in which he worked. It is not clear if he lived or lives elsewhere.
Brockman and Warren are, unfortunately, only two examples of police officers who completely disregard the law while on duty. They have increasingly become interested in collecting fines and harassing people whenever they can. The New York Police Department, in particular, appears to have no other purpose but to frustrate and extort a population that is already weary of heavy taxes, Wall Street corruption, and political disregard. Rather than being a force for good, police officers are instead an incredible force for evil.
One caveat: this is not to say that there are not police officers who try to do their best and who try to help people. It may be that we don’t hear about these people, because they are unremarkable. Police officers, when they do their job as best they can, fade into the background. They do not kick women in the head; they do not rape children; they do not shoot people in the back. They appear at car accident sites, there to help people on the way to resolving the problem by providing a record for both insurance companies. They answer phone calls from the public, helping people who have questions. They are closer to Barney Fife than Judge Dredd.
Unfortunately, as it becomes increasingly common that the system protects police officers who commit crimes, it becomes clear that the law is unevenly applied. Police officers can shoot people whenever they choose and get away with it. They can break any number of laws at their own discretion, often receiving paid administrative leave for it. In other words, police officers can commit crimes and get to say at home on the taxpayer’s dime. Is it any surprise then that police officers act with impunity without regard of the consequences?
All of this begins with recruitment. In America, the common practice is to exclude people of high intelligence. To put it simply, the stupider an officer is, the more likely he is to get hired. So long as he can meet the department’s physical requirements and obey the orders of his superiors, he has guaranteed job security. In many cases, it takes an act of god to remove a police officer from his post.
Thus, police officers executive people- particularly people of minority groups. Black people, Hispanic people and transgender people are particularly targets of police aggression, as are women. The lower a person’s perceived status in society, the bigger a target that person becomes for police misconduct. The rights of individuals are not considered: the deciding factor is more often than not whether a person is capable of defending themselves.
For those who are executed by police officers, the rights they grew up believing to be guaranteed become null and void. A person executed by a police officer is denied the right to a trial, the right to present evidence in his defense, the right to face his accuser, the right to a speedy trial, among others. Human rights are so regularly disregarded by police officers that their use of tear gas- a chemical banned internationally in warfare- occurs regularly.
In other words, in addition to summary execution of individuals, police officers also commit chemical warfare against groups of people- often people who commit no other crime but raising their voice in protesting. Protesting, it transpires, is frowned upon in today’s oppressive oligarchy.
If police officers knew how little they had to fear from individual people, they might act very differently. Most people don’t care about police, except when a police officer is nearby. During these times, the feeling is almost always fear: a police car is an intimidating thing, driven by an agent of the state who is capable of ruining lives at a whim. Most people just want police officers to go away. After all, for the majority of each individual’s life, a police officer is simply not needed. Even when he is called upon, he acts in a manner contrary to that which is expected: instead of upholding the law, today’s police officer breaks the law.
If the courts will not correct the police, if the legislature will not correct the police, if the police will not correct themselves, then finally, at long last, people will decide they have had enough. Then, and only then, will the paranoia of every officer be justified. Citizens who wanted nothing other than to live their lives in peace will burn down precincts, overturn police cars, and kill officers. All the while, even in the midst of a law enforcement collapse, they will fail to understand that they bring their miseries upon themselves.
When it comes down to it, no matter where a person lives, no mater which political masters presume to run his life for him, every person would sooner engage their own lives in the dangerous hazard of combat rather than allow themselves to be trampled upon time after time. Rather than carrying weapons, police officers merely need to mind their own business to ensure their own safety. Unfortunately, the officers who disgrace themselves and their uniform do not appear to understand this.
As a result, it appears to be only a matter of time until distrust of police officers becomes so widespread that no one will call 911 when a robber is nearby, or when an accident occurs. Rather than fearing for their own safety, people will learn to defend themselves. This will be the difference between a homeowner cowering in the basement when a criminal is nearby to a homeowner loading up a shotgun, ready to face whatever may come. The homeowner with the shotgun will give a single reason for defending himself.
“I don’t trust the police.”
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