With the shooting of two armed police officers last night outside of the Ferguson, Missouri Police Department, once again the media and politicians are attempting to shift the narrative away from what is actually happening: cops around the country are regularly engaged in making false arrests, throwing people in debtor’s prisons, brutalizing and killing unarmed civilians with impunity. The Ferguson Police Department in particular, which rose to international fame after one of its officers murdered unarmed Black teen Michael Brown in broad daylight last year, has been revealed to be exactly what the citizens of Ferguson always said it was: an extortionist operation fund
used to funnel money to the local city government. The surprisingly thorough account of the city police force’s racially discriminatory and downright dirty operations
was recently revealed by the U.S. Department of Justice. In the report, there are instances of people being arrested, jailed, charged and made to pay an unconscionable amount in fines for such “violations” as simply sitting in a parked car for too long, causing a “peaceful disturbance”, or walking in a “manner” not deemed appropriate by law enforcement. “Failure to comply” (i.e. not submitting to the unjust practices of the Ferguson PD) often results in citizens being shocked with a taser or even bitten by a wild K-9. In one incident an innocent man was jailed, and when he questioned the circumstances of his imprisonment he was beaten so badly his face was covered from head to toe in blood. He was then charged with “destruction of public property
” for bleeding on his assailant’s (the police officer) uniform!
Left unsaid is that, were such a thorough investigation to be done of police departments in every region across the country, the excessive corruption and racism which characterizes the Ferguson PD would be revealed to be a systematic part of just about all the nation’s police departments, including that of the NYPD. As in Ferguson, many in New York rose up to make their voices of discontent heard after the NYPD’s Daniel Pantaleo was not indicted in the public lynching of Eric Garner which he and his fellow officers carried out last summer. The response from the citizenry has been overwhelmingly non-violent, though the same can not be said for the cops. However, the few incidents where members of the public (acting solo) have responded to police violence in kind by initiating violent acts of their own on random officers in the police uniform are given such widespread news coverage and are used to paint all those who resist police violence and intimidation with a negative brush. At the same time, the person who carried out the attack is treated as some insane psychopath who never had any real grievances (regardless of whether one agrees with the violent methods by which these grievances were made heard, which I do not) against the police. It happened late last year when Ismaaiyl Brinsley shot two NYPD officers dead before turning the gun on himself as part of an alleged revenge attack on the NYPD after a Grand Jury decided it not to indict Officer Pantaleo for killing Eric Garner, and now it’s happening again with the still unknown shooter of two Ferguson officers early this morning. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is referring publicly to whoever fired the shots (which btw did not kill either officer; both have been released from the hospital) as “damn punks”, while referring to the wounded officers as “brave heroes”. How is it that in our society being a law enforcement officer who gets shot amounts to being a “hero”? Does the fact that they were shot somehow negate the fact that the Department they represent has been exposed as enforcing a racist regime of citizen extortion? Again, I am not justifying their being shot, but painting the attempted assassin as someone who had absolutely no motive or legitimate grievances other than that of being a so-called “thug” is the exact same logic used to justify endless wars of imperialism in southwest Asia (aka the “Middle East”). It’s akin to the “they just hate us because of our freedom” nonsense that is used to cover up the central issues at hand, namely militarism, neocolonialism and imperialism. So while the media and public officials once again try and make it appear as if cops being killed by random attack is more of a probability than civilians being attacked and killed by cops, it’s important to remember the numbers say otherwise. In 2014, 59 police officers were killed by an attacker (which was up from 30 in 2013). Contrast this with the 1,500 people who are killed by police annually, whose deaths are rarely if ever covered outside of local media, are generally ignored by the FBI, and are almost unanimously ruled as justified. It is important to remember that behind each of these 1,500 deaths there are 1,500 different faces and stories. Below are links I’ve collected which offer just a tiny glimpse into some of those many stories.
Tony Robinson (Wisconsin)
Anthony Hill (Georgia)
Dontre Hamilton (Wisconsin)
Samuel Shields (D.C.)
Ezell Ford (California)
Kevin Davis (Georgia)
Cameron Tillman (Louisiana)
VonDerrit Mysers Jr. (Missouri)
This post has been cross-posted from the blogger's official website UShypocrisy.com. It can be viewed in its original form here.