The past week, two shootings — one of which has everyone talking and the other, for reasons that escape me, appears almost nowhere in mainstream media — have caused me to come back to the keyboard. The first shooting you know all about: the senseless killing of 12 people and wounding of 58 others at a midnight screening of Dark Knight Rises, the latest Batman movie, by a crazy man who apparently believes he is the Joker. The second shooting doesn’t have as many people upset.

Maybe that’s because it’s normal for the police to shoot into crowds of women and children in America.

No, that can’t be it…yet. While it has long been the norm for American police officers to shoot citizens with impunity, they usually only shoot one at a time and excuse it on the basis of — in addition to their massive fear at performing the job of being murderers police officers — the individual suspect being a gang member, or someone they thought was armed, or someone who was just a little too contemptuous of them.

This time, they shot into a crowd comprised primarily of women and children. (Edit 3/21/2017: The YouTube video has vanished, so it was removed from this post.)

 

So maybe the reason so few people are talking about the Anaheim shooting is because we don’t mind discussing a crazed individual who is, thankfully, in custody, but we can’t handle the idea of police officers shooting into crowds of women and children — and seeing a police dog rip into a baby stroller.

Perhaps the fear is that, as with the Rodney King beating in 1991, widespread rioting would break out. Frankly, I don’t know why it hasn’t already. If I lived in that neighborhood, I suspect the police would be required to shoot me, as I would be unable to restrain myself from going after them.

Whatever the reason for the silence regarding this unconscionable act of cowardice by “Anaheim’s Finest,” it does nothing but help to ensure that things will only get worse. As police are increasingly allowed to get away with pretty much anything — including, now, shooting at women and babies — those who suffer these incidents can’t help but start to fight back, leading to more such incidents.

Police officers may be a necessary evil.

Increasingly, they are just evil.

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9 comments

  1. “Police officers may be a necessary evil.”

    Evil is necessary, but there are no necessary evils. There will always be murderers, rapists, and robbers, this is a necessary part of life, but there is no necessity to put them in charge.

    1. The unfortunate fact of the matter is that power changes people. Whether they want it to, or not, it has a corrupting influence. They get used to getting their way, and then it starts to be something they expect. When it doesn’t happen, some of them will just be perturbed, but some will cross the line.

      The policing function is an unfortunate necessity of human beings living together in groups. In modern society, we have chosen to designate specific persons to handle that function.

      Because of the above, police are both necessary, and must constantly struggle against the evil not just in others, but in themselves.

      Unfortunately, they are not as good at handling the evil in themselves as they are in others. Kind of like the cobbler whose kids go barefoot.

  2. “Police officers may be a necessary evil.”

    Evil is necessary, but there are no necessary evils. There will always be murderers, rapists, and robbers, this is a necessary part of life, but there is no necessity to put them in charge.

    1. The unfortunate fact of the matter is that power changes people. Whether they want it to, or not, it has a corrupting influence. They get used to getting their way, and then it starts to be something they expect. When it doesn’t happen, some of them will just be perturbed, but some will cross the line.

      The policing function is an unfortunate necessity of human beings living together in groups. In modern society, we have chosen to designate specific persons to handle that function.

      Because of the above, police are both necessary, and must constantly struggle against the evil not just in others, but in themselves.

      Unfortunately, they are not as good at handling the evil in themselves as they are in others. Kind of like the cobbler whose kids go barefoot.

  3. Mr. Horowitz, it strikes me as ironic that a man I assume to have a law degree is so poorly educated. To attack police officers as wholly “just evil” seems incredibly hyperbolic, particularly when basing this conclusion on isolated incidents of a few officers behaving poorly, or more likely the victims of media spin. Was the Rodney King beating a violation of the law by those sworn to uphold it? Yes. But the good done by police officers greatly outweighs the bad. From daily occurrences, such as arresting drunk drivers and gang members, in order to keep our communities safer, to the incredible, such as NYPD officers bravely running into the Twin Towers during 9/11 in order to save lives. Next time, please consider this before you attack the entire police community

    1. You have your opinion; I have mine.

      If you read the post again, you’ll see that I said “increasingly, they are just evil.”

      Police officers aren’t what they used to be. This isn’t just my observation; it’s also the observation of a number of retired police officers. Take Norm Stamper, for example.

      Or look at this accurate account of how the police in our country have been transformed from a civilian policing force to military-style soldiers in a war against their own citizens.

      There are police officers who recognize the problems this creates, and are trying to change it.

      This is a change that must be encouraged, because “zero tolerance policing” based on the “broken windows” theories of law enforcement — which is what you get when you turn police officers from “serving and protecting” into “soldiers occupying” our communities — cause more harm than good.

      It is this conversion of our police officers into soldiers that causes people like me to think of the police as “increasingly…just evil.”

  4. Mr. Horowitz, it strikes me as ironic that a man I assume to have a law degree is so poorly educated. To attack police officers as wholly “just evil” seems incredibly hyperbolic, particularly when basing this conclusion on isolated incidents of a few officers behaving poorly, or more likely the victims of media spin. Was the Rodney King beating a violation of the law by those sworn to uphold it? Yes. But the good done by police officers greatly outweighs the bad. From daily occurrences, such as arresting drunk drivers and gang members, in order to keep our communities safer, to the incredible, such as NYPD officers bravely running into the Twin Towers during 9/11 in order to save lives. Next time, please consider this before you attack the entire police community

    1. You have your opinion; I have mine.

      If you read the post again, you’ll see that I said “increasingly, they are just evil.”

      Police officers aren’t what they used to be. This isn’t just my observation; it’s also the observation of a number of retired police officers. Take Norm Stamper, for example.

      Or look at this accurate account of how the police in our country have been transformed from a civilian policing force to military-style soldiers in a war against their own citizens.

      There are police officers who recognize the problems this creates, and are trying to change it.

      This is a change that must be encouraged, because “zero tolerance policing” based on the “broken windows” theories of law enforcement — which is what you get when you turn police officers from “serving and protecting” into “soldiers occupying” our communities — cause more harm than good.

      It is this conversion of our police officers into soldiers that causes people like me to think of the police as “increasingly…just evil.”

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