It appears the public is finally realizing police can get brutish and way out of control, like at the George Floyd protests. Well, jeez, it’s about dang time. I thought everyone knew this. Guess not. But then I was a hippie radical in the 1960s and helped organize huge anti-Iraq War protests in L.A. You just haven’t lived until you been kettled by LAPD or tear-gassed.
There are two reasons why the George Floyd protests are different.
1) The protests have wide support. Most everyone realizes that Floyd was unjustly killed by a cop who in the photo appeared to not care at all. This came shortly after the clearly racist cold-blooded murder of Ahmaud Arbery. So, while some are upset by the damage caused by protesters, most also realize that this is a cause worth supporting. That’s new. Most organized protests don’t have major support. Until now.
2) Cell phones and surveillance video are omnipresent. Buffalo NY police department today originally said today the cop who pushed an old man backwards so he fell and hit his head on the ground injuring him severely, well, that didn’t happen, the old man tripped. The video shows otherwise. And the Buffalo Police Commissioner just suspended two cops. And, yo, Mr. Commissioner, don’t forget. The whole world is watching.
And before someone says, but Bob. We need law enforcement. Yes we do. We also need serious reform and we need it now. However, here in Vegas we also remember the horrendous mass murders at Mandalay Bay, when LV Metro, sheriffs, and paramedics seriously risked their lives to stop the killing and rescue the injured. Police departments need to genuinely protect and serve, and be under community control, not entities unto themselves.
And yesterday FBI arrested three Boogaloos who were planning to blow up a transformer substation in hopes of creating a riot at the Vegas protests. Yeah, we do need law enforcement.
But we do not need law enforcement who acts like testosterone-maddened chimpanzees who assume they are above the law. That has to change. So does removing the racist in the White House who not so tacitly encourages this.