Been a bit of a crazy week in the news if you haven’t noticed, and although both incidents I’m commenting on here were whack (because we needed more examples of racism), you can also find some serious positive aspects in the middle of all of it as well. This first video is off the chain ludicrous, and it practically left me speechless (not easy) watching a police officer smash open a car window with baby sitting right there. What we have here is a failure to communicate. We also have a serious lack of rational thinking on the part of the police. There are solutions though folks, so despite the insanity, we can’t lose sight of what needs to happen, and we can’t feel hopeless. And, let’s not forget that there are plenty of good police officers out there as well.
As for these two knuckleheads that felt the need to harass a family rushing to see someone on their death bed, let’s not sugarcoat the incident. It was racial profiling. As a white man, I’m embarrassed for the white CNN commentator who made the blatant assertion that it was in no way race related. Obviously he needs to learn more about racial profiling, and perhaps take a police ride-a-long one nite. If you can’t tell from watching that clip that you’re witnessing a racially-motivated incident, then please leave a comment below with your argument. We’ll discuss.
On the bright side, I absolutely loved the African-American commentator speaking up so adamantly, because we need to see more of that, in all areas of the color spectrum. I felt uncomfortable watching her sit there and stew during the clip and while listening to the other people discuss, but her preaching the double truth made it all worthwhile.
As for what needs to happen, as I mentioned in my intro, the path is revealing itself nicely. Support your local CAMERAS FOR COPS initiative, because on-board and on-officer camera protect everyone – citizens and officers alike. That’s step #1. Step #2 requires clear-cut police reform, the kind that results in crystal clear punishment-fits-the-crime structure within all our police departments. Yes, police officers put themselves on the line every single day, and we absolutely cannot forget that. Do they need more leeway than most any other profession on Earth? Possibly. But at no point, ever, should an officer be allowed to harass a car full of citizens (including a child) to the unreasonable point of smashing in a freaking window and tazing someone.
It needs to be made crystal clear, to any and all officers, that if you behave badly, you will be punished just like the rest of the working population would be for job misconduct. That needs to include a very clear and quick progression leading to full dismissal. We have a system in place to discourage criminal behavior in our citizenry, but the systems in place to punish criminal behavior within law enforcement are sorely lacking – as my step-dad (a former state police officer in two states) has vociferously complained about now for decades. If we tone down the carte blanche BS a bit, things will improve.
Now briefly on to this second video, which is equally bizarre. Here we see two African-American officers “racially-profiling” a black man in a very, very strange situation. I don’t know if you can even use the words racial profiling here (more examples of racism, or not?), but regardless, what you can do is say kudos to the citizen lawyer who came to the rescue. You want to talk about speaking out?!! Yeah, she takes the cake. If there’s a “Speak Out Award” somewhere, she may win it for 2014. So refreshing to see someone stand up to a bad situation, regardless of risk, and just simply DO THE RIGHT THING!
The whole incident rose above race in my opinion, and it was truly just about doing what’s right, regardless of the consequences. I hope, as the human race, we all start behaving more like this, and less like the police behaving badly from video #1. Have faith… we’ll get there.