|Police now think they are more than equal in the Animal Farm
I generally don't like the police, but I didn't start out harboring this
prejudice. It resulted from dozens of unpleasant interactions with law
enforcement. I'm now approaching sixty and I can't point to a single positive
experience I've ever had with a cop.
My prejudice spiked on June 15, 2007 when I crossed path with a police officer by the name of Gregory Reardon. Here was a police officer whose finely honed sense of unearned privilege coexisted with an intellect whose acuity was roughly the same as that of a rusty butter knife. Roughly speaking, a bonafide moron with the intelligence of a turnip. You could say that he was an asshole who utilized the power of the state to crap on me.
The tax feeding police are to the government as the edge is to a knife. Regretably, they are not exactly the sharpest blades in the cutlery drawer.
I believe that the kind of person who would really want to become a police officer is precisely the kind of person who should not be allowed to work as one. When asked "why do you want to become a police officer?", the incorrect answer would be "I want to give something back to the community." The correct answer would be "I have a mortgage to pay."
It has become common practice for police in America to abuse their state given authority to commit violence, and to arrest people on a charge of disorderly conduct when those people simply exercise their free speech rights and object strenuously to how they are being treated by an officer. Here is some insight on the law.
Here is what was written up on my behalf by the police:
On 06/15/2007 was a disorderly person, in that he or she did, with purpose to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultous behaviour, or did create a hazardous or physically offensive condition by an act that served no legitimate purpose of the defendant, in violation of common law and MGL 272:53
If a citizen mouths off to a cop, or criticizes a cop, or threatens legal action against a cop, it's not okay for that cop to cuff the person and charge him with disorderly conduct. Worse yet, if a cop makes such a bogus arrest, and the person gets upset, he's liable to get an added charge of resisting arrest or worse.
Is there a law forbidding angry nonviolent speech directed at a police officer?
You can yell at a cop in America and if some people don't like what you're saying, too bad. There is no law against that and it is not an offense for which you are supposed to be arrested.
The disorderly conduct law is "confusing, overbroad, frequently used by police to harass disfavored individuals" and that it "violates constitutional rights of free speech, assembly and petition."
If someone is argumentative or challenging in any manner, refusing to play by the police rules and not willing to show deference, then they fail the attitude test.
We have, as a nation, sunk to the level of a police state, when we grant our police the unfettered power to arrest honest, law-abiding citizens for simply stating their minds.
I'm sure police take a lot of verbal abuse on the job, but given that they are armed and have a license to arrest, to handcuff, and even to shoot and kill - they must be told by their superiors that they have no right to arrest people for simply expressing their views, even about those officers. Cops think they have a constitutional right to be treated deferentially.
Insulting an officer of the law is not a crime. Telling an officer he or she is breaking the law is not a crime. Demanding that an officer identify him or herself is not a crime. And saying you are going to file a complaint against the officer is not a crime.
In a free country, we should not allow the police, who after all are supposed to be public servants, not centurions, to behave in this manner. When we do, we do not have a free society. We have a police state.
Verbal insolence is sometimes called contempt of cop, and offended officers may use the catchall disorderly conduct charge to make an arrest. But, you cannot commit the crime of disorderly conduct in your own home. Nor is it illegal to curse or flip the bird to a police officer.
The law is clear. You can't be guilty of disorderly conduct simply because you are saying bad things to a police officer.
I recognize we place limitations on the police for good reasons, because while we want our society to be policed, we don't want it to be a police state.
I was told, over and over and over, that citizens must have a high amount of respect at all times for all officers of the law. The people hammering home this point have consistently failed to recognize that respect is earned, not granted or owed to cops, as it is with all other people.
Tyranny is defined as power exercised beyond right.
Most law enforcement officers see themselves as a caste apart from, and set above, the civilian population, and thus empowered to command submission from us. They see themselves as possessing innate authority, rather than authority derived from the law. They are the law, at least in the theater of their small and otherwise uncluttered minds.
Why is it that if you break the law, you subject to criminal prosecution, while law enforcement officers are generally only subject to an "internal department investigation?"
My advice is if you see a policeman approaching, handle them as a pit bull dog off its leash and a potential danger to your life. If they show you respect, they deserve the same, because respect is a two way street. Unfortunately most policemen demand that a mere civilian show them significant respect and deference (meaning that you better grovel sufficiently).
On any given day, we will read far more stories of police abuse of citizens then citizens abusing police.
Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or
for ill, it teaches the whole people by its examples. If the
government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it
invites every man to become a law onto himself; it invites anarchy.
Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, Olmstead v. U.S., 1928
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