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)
- Darrien Hunt (Utah)
- Lashano Gilbert (Connecticut)
- John Crawford III (Ohio)
- Tanisha Anderson (Ohio)
- Akai Gurley (New York)
- Tamir Rice (Ohio)
- Jessica Hernandez (Colorado)
- Ramarley Graham (New York)
- Kajame Powell (Missouri)
- Antonio Zambrano-Monte (Washington)
- Natasha McKenna (Virginia)
- Andre Lopez (California)
- Kenneth Harding (California)
- Jerame Reid (New Jersey)
- Jordan Baker (Texas)
- Dante Parker (California)
- James Boyd (New Mexico)
- Richard Ramirez (Montana)
- Jonathon Ferrell (North Carolina)
- John Geer (Virginia)
- Bernard Bailey (South Carolina)
- Philippe Holland (Pennsylvania)
- These 15 Black Women Were Killed During Police Encounters. Their Lives Matter, Too
- Cop Kills 3 Different People in 21 Weeks and Gets Promotion
- Grand jury clears Beaumont cop who broke kid’s arm
- Detroit Police Officers Pistol Whip, Punch and Kick a Handcuffed Man As He Cries Out For Jesus
- Georgia cops fired Taser 13 times ‘as a cattle prod’ to make tired man walk before he died
- Here’s the Data That Shows Cops Kill Black People at a Higher Rate Than White People
- Video shows Chicago cops trampling woman on dialysis to take down son who ignored them
- Cops Who Shot and Killed Unarmed Veteran Were Just Awarded Medals For ‘Courage’
- Unarmed Indian Grandfather Left Paralyzed By Police in Alabama
- Seattle cop arrests military vet for using golf club as cane
- The 14 Teens Killed by Cops Since Michael Brown
- Why the Homeless May be Especially Vulnerable to Police Violence
- 8 White Cops Fired 46 Bullets at 1 Black Homeless Man
- LA police shoot, kill man during alleged struggle
Excellent article. I shared on FB.
I thank you very much for that!
Looks like local and national politicians are media are taking lessons from Bibi Netanyahu on transforming victims into victimizers. And people wonder why the corporate media is dying.
It goes to show that our society has been too well-conditioned to accept things that are “presented” as fact. This is due to our neglect to teach that questioning authority is one of the key concepts to a free society.
Amen to that. It’s no exaggeration to compare it in some sense to WWII Europe in that the state/corporate power elite have such control over the narrative.
Double standards as usual. Sickening.
Two cops shot in Fergustan. Two cops wounded and isn’t that odd. The scenario smacks of set up.
Well written Caleb.
Thank you. While I don’t know if it is a set up or not yet, it is strange how everytime the movement gains steam is when an event like this happens. At the same time people have legitimate grievances and it’s always only a matter of time before someone expresses it in a vengeful manner. So who knows??
Have you seen this? The timeline and ballistics suggest they were shot by other cops – possibly as friendly fire: https://hwaairfan.wordpress.com/2015/03/13/false-flag-time-frame-of-the-ferguson-police-shot-by-police/
Omg! I certainly have not heard this yet. I’m about to check it out. Interesting.
Reblogged this on The Secular Jurist and commented:
The Secular Jurist is withholding commentary on these two apparent shootings of police officers in Ferguson, Missouri until the alleged perpetrator(s) is identified. Right now, anything is possible. However, this fine editorial provides good context to the developing story.
Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
Excellent post … well researched & documented! Stop, read and learn …. many lessons to learn!
Hey Dr. Rex!
Hi there, Caleb!! Was missing you … good to see you. As always, great post!!
Thank you. I know. Unfortunately I don’t have as much time to write as I once did, but I still have so much to say!!
I can believe that … and I would like to read so much! Your material is excellent.
Aww You are just too kind you know that?
TY … So are you!