Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Broad brush bigotry

The myth that all Mexicans are lazy illegal immigrants who only come here for the social services and to commit crimes has been around for very long time but since the GOP went all in on winning elections based on drumming up fear of "the other" with wedge issue politics, it's become much worse. You see it in the horrible Arizona "show us your papers" law but this mindset isn't only found in the southern states on the border. This poisonous fruit of conservative Republican race baiting has spread all over the country. Even in Washington State:
A Seattle freelance videographer recently captured a local cop kicking a man in the head while prone on the ground and using ethnic slurs:

The Police Department disclosed Friday that it has launched an internal investigation into the incident, in which the gang detective, Shandy Cobane, can be heard on video telling a man lying on a concrete sidewalk, "I'm going to beat the [expletive] Mexican piss out of you, homey. You feel me?"
The cop would have got away with it except for the videographer that happened to be on the scene. The guy wasn't even guilty, but that shouldn't matter. Even a criminal doesn't deserve that kind of unnecessary violence. Too many cops have become little more than violent thugs who take out their sadistic inclinations on the public. And it's not just because of the race baiting. You can also blame the war on some drugs for over-equipping them via forfeiture money and the issuance of tasers as standard equipment that allowed them to use "non-lethal" force instead of dialogue to defuse tense situations. Further there's no much incentive to behave since they so rarely get held accountable.

It's not that aren't any good and caring cops, but the thugs seems to be growing in their ranks and no one calls them out. Our LEOs have morphed over the years from public servants to becoming almost as much a menace to civil society as the criminals themselves. In the end we're less safe if the general population fears both equally.

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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