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  •  "Protecting the public" is not what (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlueDragon, Horace Boothroyd III

    they are hired to do.  They're to enforce the law and protect the constitution.  Of course, since most of them have no idea what the law is and are merely trained to follow orders, it's not surprising that they mess up. Their response to objections from the public that's employed them is "tell it to the judge." Then when cases get dismissed, despite being over-charged to extort a plea, they resent that the judges are letting the bad guys out. Painting themselves as "protectors" makes them feel important.  But, the fact is that cops cannot prevent crime (other than their own); they can prevent repetition of crimes but only if they make a good case based on evidence, which most of them seem unable to collect.
    So, they resort to intimidation and the easily intimidated get shafted while the guys who can tell a good story get away.

    People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

    by hannah on Mon Nov 14, 2011 at 03:28:14 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  They protect the public by enforcing laws (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chimpy

      Your word parsing is disingenuous.

      And cops don't charge alleged criminals. They aren't responsible for the charges that the prosecutors decide to go with.

      And cops certainly can prevent crime and they can protect the public by detaining criminals and helping put them in jail so that they don't commit more crimes!

      •  Perhaps you should read some (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Horace Boothroyd III

        police reports some time and make the effort to sit in court rooms to see what actually occurs.
        The "presumption of innocence" is not just a starting point for a trial.  Every person detained for any amount of time is presumed innocent until it has been proved that he's guilty of having caused some injury.  Disobedience is not a crime.
        In any event, the police are tasked with treating every person with respect.  That's why tackling non-violent persons is a violation of human rights, an abuse, which requires an intervention. The people who are ordering the police to be violent need to be fired.

        The problem with "protection" is that it focuses energy on a potential victim, instead of attending to the agents of violence.  It is, of course, easier to keep domestic animals in protective enclosures and harder to deal with predatory wolves and cougars. However, keeping humans locked up in houses or strapped into cages with wheels means they've been deprived of their liberty.  Which is exactly why OWS has taken to the streets and other public spaces. The people are tired of being locked up.

        People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

        by hannah on Tue Nov 15, 2011 at 03:36:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I have plenty of experience in that arena already (0+ / 0-)

          I don't need to go sit in a courtroom or read trial transcripts or watch how police behave more closely to be more well-informed. What I wrote above is 100% accurate and relevant.

          And civil disobedience is a violation. Denying that is denying reality. In some cases it results in a simple citation, and in other cases it's a full-fledged crime.

          There have been a few cases where it appears that a few individual cops have been violent. There's no evidence that they've been ordered to be violent. Because of the risk of violence from protesters, they protect themselves against that risk - that's why they carry guns and tasers around with them all the time, after all - not because they're constantly confronted with the need to use those tools, but because if there's a need, they're ready. This ain't rocket science.

          Tackling someone who was a peaceful protester who then chooses to resist arrest isn't the cop being violent. I've seen plenty of evidence of protesters behaving badly as well as a few examples of cops apparently behaving badly, but in many of those examples, we don't see all of what led up to that behavior.

          Now, in many cases, I support the efforts and the methods of the protesters - "behaving badly" is part and parcel of civil disobedience to gain publicity. Throwing firecrackers to spook police horses is not. Throwing yourself under a police scooter, then whining that your foot got stuck under it and so you pushed it over is not. Being angry and offended that cops who were ignoring your initial temper tantrum (of lying on the street and pretending you were hit and knocked down by a scooter you purposely stepped in front of) came at you violently and arrested you after you kicked over a police scooter when you didn't get the attention you wanted - I don't support that guy's assertion that the cops shouldn't have run him over (he didn't) or that they shouldn't have arrested him for kicking over the scooter (they should have, since that's blatant civil disobedience).

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