Just When You Thought St. Louis County Police Couldn’t Get Any More Ridiculous…

Just when you thought the St. Louis County police departments couldn’t possibly show themselves to be any more morally corrupt than they already are, the first 2 days in December, 2014 proved there is no limit to the departments’ insanity. While there will be no indictment for confirmed murderer Darren Wilson, just as there were no indictments for the cops who brutally beat Henry Davis senseless and then charged him with “bleeding on their uniforms”, there have literally been hundreds of arrests made of protesters who voiced their dissent and engaged in civil disobedience across the nation.

Tavon Austin of the St. Louis Rams holds his hands up to signify "Hands Up, Don't Shoot" in solidarity with people around the world protesting against police brutality  and for better accountability.
Tavon Austin of the St. Louis Rams holds his hands up to signify “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” in solidarity with people around the world who are protesting against police brutality.

The latest round of absurdity began after 5 teammates of the St. Louis Rams – Stedman Bailey, Tavon Austin, Jared Cook, Chris Givens and Kenny Brit – raised their arms to signify “Hands up, Don’t Shoot” in solidarity with nearby Ferguson as well as the thousands of protesters nationwide. This elicited a visceral reaction on December 1st from the St. Louis Police Officers Association, who issued what amounted to a thinly-veiled threat to the players if not to the NFL itself. The statement, issued through the Association’s criminal spokesman Jeff Roorda, says they are

calling for the players involved to be disciplined and for the Rams and the NFL to deliver a very public apology… [Jeff Roorda] also plans to reach out to other police organizations in St. Louis and around the country to enlist their input on what the appropriate response from law enforcement should be. Roorda warned, “I know that there are those that will say that these players are simply exercising their First Amendment rights. Well I’ve got news for people who think that way, cops have first amendment rights too, and we plan to exercise ours. I’d remind the NFL and their players that it is not the violent thugs burning down buildings that buy their advertiser’s products. It’s cops and the good people of St. Louis and other NFL towns that do. Somebody needs to throw a flag on this play. If it’s not the NFL and the Rams, then it’ll be cops and their supporters.

Jeff Roorda of the St. Louis Police Association
Jeff Roorda of the St. Louis Police Association

This is exhibit A why an ever growing segment of the population absolutely despise the police. The attitude they’ve presented is nothing less than authoritarian in tone and threatening in nature. It is truly troubling that such a large police union is working to get all the other police unions nationwide to “enlist their input” into preparing an “appropriate response” to football players who simply made a gesture in solidarity with a teenager who was violently gunned down by one of the police union’s own. Why is it that virtually all police officers seem to instinctively defend the murder of unarmed Black teens in every situation instead of admitting that just maybe one of their colleagues wasn’t such a good guy after all? If there is an “us vs. them” attitude shared both by police officers and the people they are allegedly supposed to protect, then the police have no one to blame but themselves. Officers who speak out against the corruption and racism prevalent in their various departments are few and far between; they are virtually nonexistent. And the fact that they would even think of calling for “discipline” of these football players for such a harmless act when the police who fight tooth and nail to prevent all cops from ever being held accountable for any of their own actions – be it theft or murder – speaks volumes about the moral state of policing in America. There was nothing about the players’ show of solidarity that said anything about endorsing buildings being burned, but that didn’t stop Roorda from trying to implicitly tie the African American players to those people he characterizes as “violent thugs” in contrast with the cops and so-called “good people” (meaning white). If Jeff Roorda and his police pals really wish to see a group of violent thugs and criminals, they should start by looking in the nearest mirror.

Given the tendency of authorities to endlessly scrutinize and hold Black people to completely different standards than they do whites, perhaps it’s not all that surprising that one day after the St. Louis Police Association issued their nonsensical rant, the Ferguson police department announced Michael Brown’s stepfather, Louis Head, is being investigated for possible charges of “inciting a riot” all because he reacted the way anyone else would upon hearing that their loved one’s murderer would be evading justice. Louis Head has been distraught from the very moment on August 9th when his eyes first witnessed the body of his stepson lying in the middle of the street, with loose brain tissue and a stream of blood clearly plainly visible to the entire neighborhood. He was the first person to run to be by ‘Big Mike’s’ side after the murder, before being apprehended and forced away by police. So when the scumbag “prosecutor” Bob McCullough delivered a speech in which he spitefully announced Mike Brown’s life was worth nothing to the city, county, and state governments, Mr. Head reacted with justified anger, shouting, “Burn this bitch down!” If this suffices for “inciting a riot”, then what McCullough and his legion of police minions have done over the past 3 months is a thousand times worse. (*) Gunning down at least 3 men mercilessly in the street, engaging in collective punishment, occupying entire neighborhoods with tanks and guns originally made for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, setting residents’ front lawns ablaze, jailing those who organized peaceful demonstrations and fining them as much as $3,000, are just some of the many actions taken by Ferguson and St. Louis police departments that are at the root cause of the so-called “rioting”. In fact it isn’t accurate to call this a riot at all; it is a rebellion that the pigs of the police departments and organizations have made inevitable through their rampant abuse of power and privilege.

In all honesty, I couldn’t think of a better way for the Ferguson Police Department to confirm their obvious lack of credibility than to arrest a protester for something as ridiculous as “rolling an apple into the Ferguson Police Department’s parking lot.” No, seriously. That just happened. A man is currently spending the night in St. Ann jail for rolling an apple into the Ferguson Police Department’s parking lot. What’s more, his bail has been set at an astoundingly high $1,000. Considering how utterly unjust, not to mention fascist, the authorities of this State are, is it really any wonder why someone might express a desire to “burn this bitch down” from time to time?

Mike Brown's Stepfather Louis Head with cousin Eric Davis at a memorial rally
Mike Brown’s Stepfather Louis Head with cousin Eric Davis at a memorial rally

Additional Notes:

Louis Head Ferguson Missouri* From the moment Mr. Louis Head’s initial reaction of hurt and pain went viral, conservatives went on the attack calling for him to be charged with incitement. These are the same conservatives who constantly scream about government tyranny, except for when that government tyranny is targeting Black people (which is most often the case). Then they want to lock everyone up and/or execute them. To the right is a screenshot from a conservative activist’s Twitter account, and below is a screen capture of a petition started on the White House’s website. It’s more than probable that such activists have been contacting the Ferguson Police Department urging them to bring forth an investigation and charges. Apparently in the minds of these people, demanding police accountability is totally off-limits, while prosecuting the people who hold the least amount of political power is priority #1.


23 thoughts

  1. It is turning into a police state where the power has gone to their heads. Scary stuff when they have nothing better to do than arrest someone for an apple. Then they wonder why people protest. It is major news here in New Zealand.

    1. I’m glad to hear you guys are paying attention to these outrages in New Zealand. I swear sometimes people in America view their country through a completely different lens than those of us who are brought up, I would say indoctrinated, inside it. And trust me when I say it is already a Police State here.

  2. I don’t get why people want to burn down their own town. Where are the protestors when the child is killed in a drug deal crossfire or a drive by shooting. I am outraged that the policeman who choked Mr. Garner to death was not indicted, but burning down your own house…?

    1. Who exactly has “burned down their own house”? A business is not a house. While it might not be something I would encourage, it is not all that difficult to emphasize with somebody who maybe acts irrationally when confronted constantly by a truly irrational “justice” system. Another factor is that this capitalist system respects money and property more than it respects human life. So why have so much concern about property when the game is already rigged to keep entire segments of the population from ever sharing in that ownership? And btw, the murder of Eric Garner was in New York where hundreds of protesters have been arrested for peacefully demonstrating. The destroyed property you mentioned is in Ferguson St. Louis area in Missouri. I’m not sure why you are linking your “outrage over the Garner chokehold” with damaged property in another part of the country.

    2. Oh and more to the point, who the hell are you supposed to protest against when a “child is killed in a drug deal crossfire or a drive by shooting”? The family’s home of whoever is responsible for it, though this hypothetical person might already be in jail? This whole equating of crimes committed and sanctioned by the state with individual crimes is nothing but a cop-out, a means of distracting from legalized oppression of entire communities.

  3. Michelle Alexander (wrote The New Jim Crow) makes the observation that black men are killed by cops at the same rate (one every 3-4 days) that they were lynched 100 years ago.

  4. Truly excellent piece. Local police, now militarized thanks to the Pentagon, have become the single greatest threat to our constantly dwindling liberties in much of this country.

    They may have made a tactical mistake, however, in attempting to make the average Bubba choose between the NFL and a local police state. This one will probably be decided by another local St. Louis organization–Budweiser, an organization bigger than the St. Louis police and the NFL put together.

  5. The verdict incited the entire situation that went down. ‘Not guilty’ is what incited it and they know it. I would have said the same thing, especially given the circumstances. I’m not going to shut up just because those killer pigs are on a rampage, attempting to lock-up every ‘body’ that’s disagreeing with that farce they call, “justice.”

    1. I’ve got to confess the truth, that I said the same thing Mr. Head was saying after the verdict all the way down here in Louisiana, so I can only imagine how the man who is so clearly hurt and suffering must have felt. From my own observation his reaction turned from hurt to anger upon seeing the woman he loves so hurt and devastated herself, when she cried out in pain. Most people are angered when someone hurts those they love the most. Predictably the white supremacists sudden lose all sense of empathy whenever it comes to Black people suffering. Then suddenly every reaction and action is treated as abnormal and out of bounds. Suddenly we hear that people who light shit on fire are “people who are using this moment as an opportunity to destroy property”, as if America hasn’t given them every reason to be enraged and need an avenue to express the anger against the injustices committed against them every day.

  6. Seems to me that the Ferguson police will need to question those arrested for setting fires to see if they did so because of Mr. Head’s comments.

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