There was a time when policing a community was a bit more informal affair. There was a give and take between the various residents and duly appointed police officers or constables. Being an officer of the law was a more informal affair, particularly when communities were smaller and the inhabitants knew each other even in passing. But those days have long since vanished as the majority of our country’s inhabitants live in much larger communities or cities. It is the concentration of individuals and families that has more for a far more formal relationship between the policing powers and the citizens. Indeed, it has created two distinct classes of people in the eyes of the law, even if it is by default. Those tow classes are the police or law enforcement, which include those individuals who have joined some law enforcement institution and the private police that appear to enjoy the freedom from public scrutiny for their actions. Either you have a badge and sanction from authority or you are a civilian, a term often used most derisively towards us non police.
What has prompted my post is one I read called “Humanizing the Badge”. I am reminded of Shylock’s speech in the Merchant of Venice, the one about we all bleed the same blood and so forth. But in that play Shylock’s appeal is ignored. His own daughter delivers another speech that shows that there are really two different classes, her father belongs to one and her lover belongs to another. Yes, dear father, you may have your pound of flesh but you really can’t. Lawyers and judges love to make a mockery of the law in any manner they can. So once can say that anyone who is within the legal community is really of a different class from their fellow citizens. Of course any lawyer, who is also an officer of the court by admittance to the bar, may not have to report any suspected irregularities, at least not when they can make a good living ignoring them and defending those who are suspected, but those in actual law enforcement may not ignore the foibles of their neighbors. As for those whom the local authorities, county authorities, state authorities, or even federal authorities favor with shielding from public scrutiny any actions taken on behalf of such authority, thus deposing constitution laws and safeguards, they are not bound by the same duties as the cop on the beat.
If the cop’s neighbor beats his wife, the cop must at a minimum report such abuse. If a cop suspects a neighbor to be a sexual predator he must report his suspicions. If a cop observes a friend toking a joint when such toking is illegal, he must arrest that friend. Simply put, there is no way to humanize the badge, can’t be done. The law has, by default, created two distinct classes of individuals. Now the cop’s family does not enjoy those same immunities and privileges, but they do merit in the eyes of authorities a more favorable forbearance than you and I.. No matter how much you may plead with the cop about sharing the same blood and joys and pains of life, you will never be of his class. Never. You see, a cop enjoys the protection of his shield and it is called a shield for that very reason. And he carries a weapon and can use it at any time. Whether his use is justified or not is subject to examination but most such investigations white wash his use as legal. He may treat you with great disdain and disrespect but his word is not to be challenged. You say he used unnecessary force, tough. He said the force used was reasonable and who will his fellow officers, his superiors, and the judges listen to? When he gives any testimony, it is always in a professional capacity. He is a trained professional observer in the courtroom even though he is not better than the average citizen at observing anything. Should he plant evidence upon your person or in your confines such as car of home, if you can’t prove it you are going up the river. Merely touching a cop is to open yourself to a charge of felonious assault. But if he beats you bloody, you were resisting arrest. Did you fail to answer his question quick enough or give him the right answer, then you are uncooperative. Anything you wear or possess is a weapon in his eyes. There are a thousand different laws that define weapons which include damn near anything the cop can think up.
Now if you try to film, video, record any actions by a cop you are interfering with the law enforcement official. The worst offence that you can commit is contempt of cop. You are under his control, meaning you may not walk away from him unless he says you are free to go. Cops are very rarely held accountable for their actions. The reasons being that if they were, the whole police force would fall from the weight of misdeeds. But more than that, the cop is not subject to the same laws. If I aim a rifle with a scope at a cop I will be tried and found guilt of felonious assault with a deadly weapon with intend to kill. But if a cop aims his high powered assault rifle with its sniper scope on multiple civilians who are demonstrating, he will never be charged of a similar crime. A cop may draw his weapon, train it upon your person even if you are unarmed and all he needs to say was that he was in fear of his life. The fact that we may be in fear of our lives at that moment doesn’t matter. Cops are the super citizens, the extra legal individuals who are above the law. You and I must bow sown to them and show correct respect or we risk their wrath. So dear cop, with all due respect, take your humanizing the badge bull shit somewhere else. You are not one of us and never will be until you quit or retire from the force. You are cops and we are mere civilians who pay for the privilege of being your punching bags. You are not heros, you are thiefs of the public treasury through your unions and associations who extort from elected officials more remunerative than you are entitled to or earn.