"So tired of such negativity in this world. FYI Baltimore it's not about color, that guy would still be alive if he did not run. When the fuck are you going to learn! (sic)." My reply was simple; "Last I checked, there is no death penalty for running away from the police. Please read the Bill of Rights..." Am I wrong to think and post this? Should I have let it go without a response. Why did I bother? But wait, his response to my comment tells us all something about either ignorance of our fundamental rights or the roots of hatred clouding judgment. "The cops didn't wake up and go hmm who can I kill today? That's ridiculous. Here's his record, not much of a loss to me. He chose to be a criminal and put himself in this situation (emphasis added). They wouldn't have had to get physical if he didn't run or choose to be a drug dealer" (emphasis added). So according to this guy, having a prior criminal record means your life is no longer worth preserving and the Constitution no longer applies? Some kind of ex post facto application here? Punishment in the future is determined by your past behavior? It gets worse.
He went on to post - "I never said he shouldn't have been allowed a trial, this just in, he injured himself on purpose in the back of the van. Now people are creating havoc on their own neighborhood which only proves their ignorance." See the clever attempt to steer the conversation away from the obvious violation of one's civil liberties? "He injured himself...Which only proves their ignorance." First and foremost, no one knows the facts of this case other than the victim died while in custody of the police. An indictment has been issued against the six police involved, ranging from negligence to Second Degree Murder. Politically motivated? Perhaps, but indictments come from Grand Juries, not the protesting mob. But that is not enough to convince this guy that the police did anything wrong. He seems to believe that the difficulty of the job of policing is so high that they should be allowed to make mistakes, even if it means killing someone. They seem to believe the loss of life means nothing because they chose to be "criminals." So the police have an alleged right to be prosecutor, judge, jury and executioner. "It's very easy to sit at home and write a book, if either of your kids or family was a police officer I don't think you would feel the same. Now we have people rallying to go kill all white cops, put yourself in the position of constant worry." My reply? "Civil liberties apply to all, no matter the circumstances. If you believe otherwise, you need to learn more about why the Framers protected against the government taking those liberties away...or you could choose to cling to an ideology that is not based on the Constitution..."
Straight forward right? Except what you do not know is a similar situation arose in our small community a few years ago. A young man was out drinking. He was underage. He decided to go to the home of a Sheriff's deputy (car was in the driveway) late at night and purposely ring his doorbell. Not once, but twice, in two separate incidents. The second time, the deputy grabbed his gun and chased down the kid. The kid ran. The Deputy (claiming he feared for his life) ran him down and eventually shot him dead. This very person arguing the police have a right to shoot to kill anyone they fear and there is no loss because they are "criminals", was outraged by this local action. So were the people that "liked" his posts shown above. The difference? Not sure. The local kid killed could be portrayed by those that never knew him as something other than a "good kid." Underage drinking is a crime. Harassing someone's homestead not once but twice (this IS Florida), is a crime. Running from the police is not a crime, but according to this guy, it is. Except it never was and never is. The hypocrisy is obvious. What happened to the local kid was outrageous and wrong. Somehow folks fail to see their own hypocrisy. The killing locally set the community on edge for months! Judging events without knowing anything other than what is in the media is always a mistake. Deciding the law applies differently to different people is also a mistake. Deciding the police are presumed to always be right because they fear for their life is also wrong. Police put their lives at risk every day when they go to work. They deserve respect. They deserve honor. But they do not deserve to determine guilt or innocence, life or death. But the guy in Baltimore was already in custody. By the police reports alone, he was handcuffed and his legs were shackled. Where were the lives of the officers then in danger?
Perhaps what irks me more is the hypocrisy of these very folks when it comes to ensuring retiring police officers get secure pensions. You see our local government has for years neglected fully funding our local police pension funds. Why is it that folks demand we honor and trust our heroes wearing a badge but discard them when they retire? Why is it that they are heroes until they retire and then they are greedy and seemingly corrupt? The same goes for our military. "Support the troops" - until they come home. Where is the outrage for this blatant hypocrisy? Vitriolic knee-jerk reactions are always easier to defend than the obvious hypocrisy hidden behind such outrage. Critical thinking almost always gets lost behind knee-jerk emotions. And when someone attempts to distinguish between the two? Kill the messenger! So why bother? Because someone has to do it. If not, we will continue to slide into a hypocritical mess without an ability to understand each other and our collective Civil Liberties, whether or not one wears a badge.
As President Thomas Jefferson once wrote; "Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add "within the limits of the law" because the law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual." Like it or not, we are all in this together! Have a great week!