The police have no one to blame but themselves for the situation that they find themselves in right now. For years, instead of calling out the bad cops in their midst, they actively shielded and protected them. This created a real PR problem for the cops.
I generally support the police, but there are times when that support gets tested. I have had a few interactions with police officers in my life, not counting ones directly related to my job as a paramedic. I am a law abiding citizen, and the majority of those interactions were not positive ones.
In 2005, I had someone steal a check for over $200 from my mailbox, forge my name and deposit that check into his bank account. The number of the account that the check was deposited in to was printed on the back of the check, right below my forged signature, and right above the signature of the account holder. I went to the station to report the crime. I had a copy of the check. All the cop had to do was go to the bank, get the name of the account owner, and make the arrest. Anyone could have done it, it wasn’t a hard crime to solve. The cops told me that they didn’t have the manpower to solve a crime for such a small amount of money. On the way home, I passed 6 cops with cars pulled over, writing traffic tickets. So much for lack of manpower.
In 2001, I was pulled over for running a red light. When I informed the cop I was carrying, he threatened to kill me.
In 2000, my car was broken into: my stereo, radar detector, cash, and other items totaling about $600 were stolen. The crime scene investigator came out and took fingerprints. They got a hit, gave me the name of the person and asked me to sign a paper saying that this man did not have permission to be in my vehicle. A month later, I was told that the criminal would not be arrested because the crime was too minor to waste resources on.
I once had a police supervisor tell me that silencers and machine guns were illegal. I offered to bring in NFA items and the proper paperwork, so the cops could be trained to recognize and know the law. They refused.
At the same time, we hear of cops having traffic citation quotas that they need to meet in order to get raises. Cops are the collections department of a $10 billion industry whose job it is to extort money from the public.
We hear of cops getting out of DUI arrests, even while driving department issued vehicles.
On duty cops murdering handcuffed prisoners by putting a gun to their head and pulling the trigger and getting away with it.
There are the bad cops who are caught on video threatening to plant evidence on, kill people, or simply like to harass people.
Gaming the constitution and using DUI checkpoints as an excuse to springboard into other searches.
The public watched as cops took cover behind housewives and their children during a shootout just six months ago. When called out on this, the reply is: “You’re demanding perfection in an imperfect world. Where should the cops have stood in that situation, right out in the open where they would have been shot? You’re confusing prudent behavior with suicide.” Then they demand that we call them “heroes.”
The cops have lied, planted evidence, killed people’s dogs, police snipers have sniped people’s wives and taunted them about it, shot victims who were seeking help, framed people, shot innocents, and have been caught framing and arresting black people, drop grenades into baby cribs and happily say that they would do it again, all the while they expect no one to be angry about that.
The police have had a real image problem for years. It is no surprise that when the crap hits the fan, many people are willing to watch them fry. What is happening right now is a direct result of the mindset that police have had- the US-versus-THEM, “thin blue line” horseshit that they have been following. Now they are paying for it, and the law abiding citizens will, too. You have lost the support of much of the public, and you have no one to blame but yourselves.
I have been saying for years that police need to police their own. They didn’t. So now we are all going to pay for that. The first thing the police need to do is what they should have been doing all along- getting rid of the douchebags within your own ranks. Prove to us that police deserve the powers they have been given. If you don’t, then there will continue to be a massacre of police department budgets nationwide.