Now it’s the Cleveland PD’s chance to display some truly epic ignorance and stupidity:
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Andrew Hawkins took the field Sunday in a shirt reading “Justice for Tamir Rice and John Crawford III” in a gesture to bring light to officer-involved shootings in Ohio that have happened in the last three months. Now Cleveland Police Patrolman Union President Jeff Follmer is demanding an apology from the Browns for Hawkins’ actions on Sunday.
He said,”It’s pretty pathetic when athletes think they know the law. They should stick to what they know best on the field. The Cleveland Police protect and serve the Browns stadium and the Browns organization owes us an apology.”
Not that it is confined to Cleveland: the same kind of cluelessness has been on display in St. Louis, and other cities across the country, large and small. Cops don’t get it. They truly do not understand.
This is because of a long process of “othering” that has gone on for decades. Politicians and pundits have sown the seeds of mistrust between civilians and law enforcement, to the extent that we not only mistrust each other, but we are preparing to be attacked at any moment. (One example: more people wanting to carry concealed weapons, and more cops opposing CCW.) It’s now at the point where far too many people in Law Enforcement feel that anyone who isn’t a cop is a potentially deadly enemy, and they act on that mindset.
On Edit: Here is another example.
The solution is to change the way we see each other. In spite of the media, in spite of regressive jackasses on all sides, people of good will can and must re-establish communication and re-develop mutual respect. There are a lot of good cops out there, and we can start with them. Weed out the “Kill them all” a**holes and get down to business with the real professionals who actually want to protect and to serve.
But this ain’t gonna happen until the police holster their weapons, close their mouths, and open their ears. From the newest rookie patrolman, through the chiefs and up to the District Attorneys, Law Enforcement needs to understand that we have good reason to fear and mistrust them. And that cannot continue to be the case.
Get a clue, cops. Please.
Mr. Blunt and Cranky