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on Thursday, January 5th, 2012 at 1:39 pm by Radley Balko
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25 Responses to “Austin Man Arrested, Charged With Felony After Photographing Police Arest”
All I hear from the chest-thumping boola-boola God-Bless-our-Troops crowd is how ‘our boys’ are invading countries who couldn’t do a damn thing to us to preserve our ‘freedom’ here at the ‘homeland’. So the locals give one of these guys a little domestic ‘freedom” beat down. Oh the irony. How’s that working out for ya, patriots?
I love that someone got arrested for recording police abuse, and THAT arrest was recorded. It’s indicative of the state of affairs between the police and the public, and evidence that the pigs attempt to protect their own before the constitution is backfiring. Their day is coming.
I would like to believe that but the mentality of “as long as your wear a badge your always right” is still pretty strong in people especially in states like Texas. Also badge lickers will point to the fact that Austin is considered to be more liberal than the rest of the state, allowing them to scream “liberal cop haters” and other law and order bullshit slogans.
#3, people aren’t amazed that you cheer the death of a person you don’t know, they’re amazed you’re stupid enough to think that shooting cops is going to solve anything.
I’m amazed someone would proudly cheer on the death of another human being. I don’t want dead cops – I want fewer cops enforcing fewer laws. Just because someone does evil, even on a daily basis, doesn’t mean I get excited when they end up dead.
I am looking forward to the great citizens of Austin, TX paying multi-millions of their hard-earned cash to the plaintiff. May they howl at the incompetence and injustice foisted on them by their masters.
#11, Cops getting shot means fewer cops (and if cops become afraid to, say, bust into potentially armed folks’ homes amounts to the same thing as fewer laws being enforced). Still doesn’t mean you should celebrate a cop’s death. Or a dictator’s death. Or anyone’s. Or whatever. I guess it’s sad when anyone dies.
Jor #17, yea this is a dilemma for me. I don’t want to be happy about anything bad, much less violent death, happening to anyone. At the same time there comes a point at which you see it as an oppressor and bully, someone whose life has been spent doing their best to hurt others, finally getting theirs. I don’t feel happy. But I don’t feel sorry for them either.
Is it possible that “the perp” spit in the cops face? Yes. On one side there is the cops word. On the other side, there is the word of a West Point vet. Let’s weigh that evidence and, roughly, call it a draw. But there is other evidence. When I look at the video, I observe the body posture of both the cop and the perp. When I look at the perp’s posture, I do not see somebody who has just spit upon one of two cops present. Also, when I look at the cop’s posture, I do not see the posture of a person just spat upon. The cop is a liar.
The spitting story will become an epidemic. The reason for that accusation is that it cannot be disproved by videotape unless the angle is close, the camera steady and continuous for the incident. So we’ll be hearing about a lot of that. It used to be that illegal searches were covered with “dropsy” testimony — “I was walking by the subject, who suddenly dropped marijuana on the ground.” Now it’s “oh sure it looks like I’m beating someone up for no reason, but see, he spit on me and you can’t see that on the video so . . .”
The whole problem with the “being glad someone is dead” issue is a lot like the where to “draw the line at fascism” issue.
For instance; I think many people will be glad that Kim Jong Il is dead, even with the knowledge that his regime persists. But there is an arbitrary line of reasonability somewhere between him and a random cop getting shot in a raid. You could argue the cop, by participating in a drug raid in the first place, is in essence as tyrannical as KJI he only lacked the resources to opress an entire nation with his tyranny. If intent matters, than the scale of the crime is a matter of circumstance. It doesn’t make a difference to the oppressed if it’s the supreme leader that issues the edict or the cop who enforces it, he is oppressed by both in equal measure but by different means.
I have to go back to first causes, was what the cop sought to do to the other person something that I would expect of free people in free society? Was he the intiator of force or responding to threats (including threats to others than himself)? No matter how I think it over, I can’t get upset that the cop died executing a violent state raid of an accused drug user/dealer/manufatcturer (or whatever the case may be). The state sought to ruin his life with armed men and a prison sentence, having only a gun he responded in kind to the best of his ability. His reason may have been petty, I doubt he had any nobility or purpose behind firing at the officers beyond self preservation, but all the same the fighting tyranny begins somewhere. When the state chooses to destroy you, do you really care about who they sent to do the job?
It’s one thing to not get upset about someone’s death, or not feel sorry for them. Or to acknowledge that they brought it on themselves (in moral terms, not practical terms – in practical terms we bring everything that happens to us on ourselves). Or even to think that given other likely outcomes it’s for the best. That’s fine. But it’s probably bad for you emotionally and morally to be happy when someone dies (it’s part of a way of thinking about moral traits as properties of persons rather than as properties of actions or states of affairs, a habit which tempts one toward authoritarianism and relativism).
#22 “I doubt he had any nobility or purpose behind firing at the officers beyond self preservation, but all the same the fighting tyranny begins somewhere. When the state chooses to destroy you, do you really care about who they sent to do the job?”
“The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.” — HL Mencken