Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/05/28/policing-and-sanctity-life
The entire Police account of what transpired is suspect. Multiple videos were taken of the incident and none show Mr Floyd “resisting arrest”. He was complaint, sitting when instructed to do so and doing as the police directed.This all after being handcuffed.
“Resisting arrest” is police code speak for "I can beat the shit out of anyone I arrest just because I feel like it and all I have to day is claim the suspect “resisting arrest” " There was an incident in Lynchburg where cops started beating a man after he tried to push a police dog off himself after that dog was sicced on him, had him to the ground and was chewing on his leg. They claimed his trying to push the dog off was “resisting arrest” and laid into him. Cops have broken their hands from punching people in the head with that person then being charged with assault of an officer.
Koehler is totally missing the point. Pathetic, in context, and not at all helpful. Anecdotes about Officer Friendly’s kind deeds have absolutely nothing at all to do with anything. I can’t even believe the level of meteoric cluelessness to which Koehler ascends.
On the “solution” side, Koehler seems to earnestly plead for a more harmonious society. What crap. It’s about the goddam DA’s office, Bob. The DA never cares about police terrorism. We don’t need to heal society, we need to stop police terrorism. We need to break the institutional deadlock of eternal impunity for official racist murders.
You write that from the comfort of being a white man in America. Yes, there are some police who actually remember their own humanity when dealing with “lost souls” as you call them; yet African-Americans are even thought of as people in most confrontations with the police - but that is exactly how the system was set up from the beginning. This is how systemic racism works, and this is why Colin Kapernick was taking a knee. White America even the most liberal seem to believe that African Americans are “whining” as the descriminatory and deadly treatment that they are still receiving - and that “if only they did as told by the police” they wouldn’t end up dead. You want the truth, watch the video of Amy Cooper who weaponizes her whiteness in her enounter with “birding black man” who simply asked her to leash her dog! It is that automatic “white entitlement and fear of other” that white America must openly confront within themselves and have actual conversations about!
Those armed terrorists demanding that states be re-opened - not one shot fired.
The terrorism and entitlement of white people calling the police on black bodies in public spaces.
The terrorism of self appointed vigilantes that killed Ahmaud Aubery.
The killing of Brionna Taylor by police who had the wrong address and still went into her house in the middle of the night without announcing themself and fired off more 20+ rounds - yet her boyfriend is accused of shooting a police officer - in a right to carry state - that’s just bs!
Sorry white Amurika - wake up and recognize the systemic racism and bigotry inherent in the system. Stop whining about your rights being violated because they really are not!
Police need to be highly trained and thoroughly multi-racial. They need, indeed, to be the ones who take the lead as we rebuild our social system based on the sanctity of life.
I disagree. Policing is an institution of imposing the will of those in power on the powerless masses. Regardless of police officers/admin of color, racism is deeply entrenched throughout US policing. Rather than making policing a little less unjust and a little less racist, we should explore alternatives such as mediation, intervention, broader social support networks etc.
Watching the police murder another unarmed, non-violent, Black man brings to mind images I’ve seen of lynchings. I’ve looked at those pictures and wondered what kind of people would stand around an let Black people be lynched. Now the thought that comes to mind is: How can we just stand around and not try to stop police, when we see them murdering Black people this way?
If the mayor of Minneapolis wants to start any kind of healing after this tragic event, he must fire the police chief at once. The chief may not have personally released the “medical incident” statement, but he’s responsible for the cover-up, and has to go NOW. This whole department needs a good long “shaking out” process, that should result in many officers losing their jobs.
To be clear, this is just a start.
I think Mr. Koehler was right though. The lady officers of his experience treated the man with respect. Maybe it’s a variation of GIGO i.e. “garbage in–garbage out.” But when even the worst of the worst is treated as a human being----good human things, like cooperation can happen. : )