The Eclectic One

…Because labels are a poor substitute for thinking

Posts Tagged ‘police’

Because They’re More Important Than Us…

Posted by Bill Nance on April 21, 2010

I just saw this in the local paper:

LOWELL — Police have cited a 26-year-old Nashua woman for a series of driving violations that led to a crash with a police cruiser on Gorham Street Tuesday.

An investigation conducted by a Lowell Police Department Accident Reconstruction team found that Phannarouth Prak failed to stop at a stop sign, did not use a directional when turning and failed to yield for an emergency vehicle.

Police officer Narin Ma was responding to a call for medical help in car 10 when Prak pulled out of Spencer Street onto Corbett, and collided with the cruiser on Gorham, according to police reports.

Nothing unusual there except that this is not normal practice at the department. If you commit a series of driving violations that lead to a crash with Joe Civilian, you don’t get cited unless you’re drunk. So when you do something incredibly stupid like hmmm…ram into the back of someone’s car who is stopped at a red light that hasn’t been anything but red for a couple of minutes…nothing happens. This has happened to me twice in Lowell where the accident was so bad the cops had to come out. Car totaled, injuries, the works. But the two dumbasses who rear-ended me were never cited even though I requested the cop do so. I mean they rear-ended me. That’s case closed as far as who’s at fault. But no ticket unless you hit a cop. Then you get the tickets.

It’s just one more way in which our paid public servants rub our noses in the fact that they think they’re more important than the rest of us, who exist merely pay the taxes that go to their salaries. -Salaries that increasingly are better than what any non-governmental worker could hope to get doing the same job for a private company.

There are two levels of citizen in this country: At the top there are those in public employ, and then there’s everyone else. -And people wonder why voters get so pissed off at government.

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Posted in Creeping Fascism watch, Law & Order, Rants | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Let’s beat up on the cops…again

Posted by Bill Nance on November 25, 2008

For some reason journalists cover police with one of two attitudes:

  1. Police are always right, always tell the truth and are to be quoted as though God herself has spoken
  2. Police are armed thugs intent on abusing minorities, destroying civil rights and by the way are probably corrupt.

Now personally I’ve never understood this, and I speak as someone who’s covered police for years as a reporter. In my experience, most cops are doing their very best in a difficult and sometimes dangerous job. They perform their duties on average, better than most public employees and are extremely reluctant to get into unnecessary confrontations.

I’ve run into both corruption and brutality. For the first, I’ve never seen tolerance from higher-ups. Not once.

For the second, there is a lot more tolerance than there should be, but brutal cops tend to get fired, get moved to desk jobs or otherwise be forced out. It’s not 100%, but it’s more common than not. Some cops are just plain rotten. They lie, they frame people, they are bullies. I’ve seen it and reported same.

So in other words, police in general do a pretty good job, But they’re human. The training and the badge don’t make them any less susceptible to this condition. They do stupid things, they are sometimes crooks, and some are brutes and bullies. Of course equally, they do heroic things.

If a journalist is actually interested in reporting facts, one would hope they would look at each situation and make the best judgment call possible in their reporting.  This means neither acting as stenographers for police versions of facts, nor assuming everything they say is a lie until proven otherwise.

The latest example of cop-hating masquerading as journalism can be found here.

Now if you skim over the article you’ll be left with one conclusion: The Air Marshals are incompetent, dangerous and corrupt. Having never met an Air Marshal, I can’t personally testify one way or the other. However, I will quote one meaningful statistic out of the article:

“But an examination of police reports, court records, government reports, memos and e-mails shows that 18 air marshals have been charged with felonies, including at least three who were hired despite prior criminal records or being fired from law enforcement jobs”

Eighteen bad apples. Out of a force of 3000-4000 (the exact number is classified).

Do the math. That’s .06% of the officers, assuming 3000 total.

No one should be happy with cops as felons. But let’s please attempt to be real. A 2,000-word article who’s clear purpose is to show the Air Marshals as dangerous, corrupt and incompetent, and the only numbers they can come up with are 18 cops (who have been prosecuted by the way) a few cops who weren’t fired after getting a DUI, (Should you lose your job because of a DUI un-related to your work)? And a few sloppy hiring decisions.

Let’s all panic now shall we?

Gimme a break.

Posted in Crime, Journalism, Law & Order | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »