Are We a Police State Yet?

The Brown Shirts have been updated. Today we have Darth Vader lookalikes toting assault weaponry that would have made Adolph and every other dictator of the past insanely jealous.

These guys raid homeschooling mothers, crashing through doors, scaring the hell out of everyone, particularly the children, seizing the kids and separating them from their parents. In an early hours raid on a private home one of these heroes tossed a stun grenade into a baby crib, with predictable results. The baby was hurt, but of course nobody helped the baby or the family recover.

The number of unannounced
and pointless raids
ticks steadily upward.

The number of such unannounced and pointless raids ticks steadily upward. People are injured or killed. Innocents are terrified. People are knocked down, beaten up, handcuffed, bones broken. Some are jailed, at least overnight. Many suffer extensive PTSD, the life changing condition that afflicts those who survive the horrors of war. It’s not hard to see why. There is plenty of trauma for everyone but the updated Brown Shirters.

But that’s just the new Darth Vaders. The horrors visited on the black community just as often come via Blue Shirters, and they are endless, in the news every day.

So we have a continuous string of assaults and deaths that affect not only black men and women, but others as well. It never stops. It seems to be worse than ever. The victims are not the crooks who rob the bodega, the jewelry store. These are just regular people, who live ordinary lives.

The victims are not the crooks
who rob the bodega.

There are a few things that would at least slow this flood of murder and malfeasance. First, a high probability of jail for murderous cops would help. By that I mean the cops who are clearly out of control, and act precipitously, not the vast majority whom we are glad to have on our side.

Unfortunately, you can almost guarantee that justice will not be served in these terrible cases. Cops almost never pay for causing the death of an innocent. The most severe response is usually being put on paid leave for a couple of weeks.

Here’s something that would change it: Cops are required to wear body cameras while on duty. All cases that come to court are required to show the recorded event. If not, the case is dismissed.

There are a few things that would
at least slow this flood
of murder and malfeasance.

That would end the practice of some cops of simply turning the camera off. Doing so would earn the enmity of the police chief and the prosecutor. Surely, though, the most effective change would be to dock pay for the time the camera was off.

Meantime, when the case comes to court, a crook couldn’t claim something that the video does not support. In fact, video evidence may well convince someone obviously guilty to go for plea bargaining, thus speeding the judicial process and saving a lot of money. (Every case that goes to court requires a hundred or more jurors to be called, plus the cost of lawyers and judicial court officials to select and seat a jury, even before the case starts. The savings would be substantial.)

This would help, but would not end the ongoing outrageous police abuse. I have seen several videos of police officers committing outright murder, making no attempt to address the situation without lethal force. I’m sure you have too. These were taken by bystanders, and did not result in police punishment.

What can be done
about juries no less biased
than in the Jim Crow South?

But the problem is more serious than that, and probably won’t be fixed by technology. What can be done about juries no less biased than in the Jim Crow South? The week I wrote this, two high-profile cases of very clear police culpability came before grand juries, and in both cases, the grand jury somehow managed to conclude that the officer should not be indicted. The conclusion in both cases defies common sense, defies the official evidence, defies videotaped and photographed evidence, and defies many of the facts of the case as presented by the police. Further, in both cases there were numerous procedural flaws. Even Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, no friend of liberal causes, wrote of irregularities.

Is it any wonder there were demonstrations in every city in the nation?


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  1. Reblogged this on Citizens, not serfs.


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