Conversations with a Friend: Police

During recent conversation over knitting with friends, one of them revealed her complete distrust of the police.  It would be too easy to generalize based on her life experiences and where they occurred (Texas and Florida).  However, I’ve been gradually loosing my faith in authority.  I’ve watched friends and family members mauled by the system(s) that are supposed to provide support and safety.  I’ve been punished for doing the right things while others worked the system and not only got by, but got over.

I love cop and crime shows.  I watch a bunch of them weekly and routinely.  However, I am unsurprised by the real life abuses.  Police forces have become so militarized that they forget their duty to protect the “opposing” forces just as much as the forces of the status quo.  We are a country that mobilized when the abuses of the civil rights era and the slaughter of Vietnam was broadcast into our homes and work places.  If (and that is a BIG IF) they are broadcast now, we shrug and choose safety and conformity.  We note that the policy seems this or that, but we do nothing.

We are now back in the position of needing a new civil rights movement and the people who believe that and are physically showing up are paying the price … again.  Sadly, I don’t know if they’ll succeed as long as we shake our heads and change the channel.