And then this happened…
So, certain things are not at issue at all. For example, dude behind the camera yelling about the KKK and dropping the F-bomb every two seconds (his annoying little toddleresque tantrum dominates the footage appended to the end of the news story) is an idiot. He’s not worth the seconds I’d spend dismissing him or the keyboard characters it would take to do so. No need for discussion there. Likewise, anyone who yelled out and interrupted a recognized speaker at the meeting was out of line. No need for discussion there. And of course, anybody who pushed anybody was just plain wrong. Whether Jeff Roorda actually pushed the lady or others started the pushing, either way, they’re wrong. No need for discussion there either.
After dragging my face out of my palms and shaking my head in disbelief over this sophomoric display of petty counter-productivity, here is my one little tiny question. The “I am Darren Wilson” bracelet. Smart move?
Let’s be clear: I’m not asking if Roorda had a right to wear the bracelet. Of course he did. I’m also not questioning the value of the message. Darren Wilson was vilified and twice or thrice vindicated at least in the eyes of the law, so there’s nothing at all wrong with supporting him. My question is a very specific one: was it smart — tactically speaking — to wear that bracelet, at that time, at that place, with that audience (partially composed of “anti-police radicals” according to Roorda), given the purpose of that meeting (to invite public comment on a proposed Citizen Oversight Board), given Jeff Roorda‘s position (head of the police union), and given the simmering powder keg that the meeting was sure to be? Tactics are dictated by goals. So what was the larger goal of that meeting? And did the bracelet advance that goal?
On the one hand, I am disheartened by the often uninformed or misinformed anti-police sentiment that is pervading certain communities, which are not always but often liberal-leaning and majority black/brown. I do believe that misinformation must be rectified, and society must continue showing support for good cops, who put their lives and livelihoods in jeopardy for total strangers every day. (Whether Roorda’s spotty history makes him the most effective poster child for law enforcement under the circumstances is a separate issue for a separate post.) On the other hand, if the ultimate goal is “to mend the relationship between citizens and police” — and hey, I dunno, maybe that’s not the goal — but if it is, then was the bracelet necessary? Helpful? Harmful? A neutral non-issue? Does the noble principle of the bracelet win the day? Or was it a battle waged at the potential cost of the war?
8 comments on “Battling “Anti-Police Radicals””
Wonder how the author ignores the anti-UScitizen-radicals out there pushing, assaulting, macing,=falsely arresting, and throwing tear gas at women and kids.
Aside from Anti-police, anther way to describe many of the “protesters” is anarchists. Before a racial connotation is attached to this description I would point out that many of the folks in Occupy Wall Street and protesting the Economic Summits are anarchists and are of all races. These folks want a pretext to riot, loot, and raise hell. There is no reasoning with them and subtleties of an armband are of no consequence. The only course of action for dealing with an anarchist is solitary confinement.
Complicating the issue is that there are a lot of people, including yours truly, who are sick to death of hearing about numerous instances of police abuse of authority or excessive use of force and seeing the policing agencies do NOTHING to punish or address this behavior. Contrary to the view of Al Sharpton, this is not isolated to one race. Many brave and diligent police officers are now facing a firestorm of criticism because the actions of a limited few have not been properly handled for quite a long time. In today’s Post Dispatch this very same police union is reported to be in opposition to any civilian review or oversight. The police have to come to grips with the fact that the blue wall has to come down and that their self interest is served by equal protection and enforcement of the law. Anything else serves the interests of the anarchists because when the law fails, anarchy always is the result.
Totally agree that it’s not a race issue, and it’s not only unfortunate but extremely counterproductive when people (Al Sharpton) are so quick to reduce the issues to just that.
Had to vote it didn’t matter…a non factor IMHO. Guy had a long sleeve shirt and a jacket on.
Unless the folks in MO have x-ray vision, as far as I can tell nobody would have even known it was there if it wasn’t for the news saying he did.
Good point, but I read somewhere that it was the protesters who brought it to the media’s attention. And in one video (there are several different ones online), I could have sworn I heard someone yelling about his bracelet. Not sure if that was before the shoving match or afterwards. In any event, I’m still torn on whether it was a good call…
It would have turned out differently if JR had a “Hands up Don’t shoot” t-shirt on?
Not if he was supportive of the police it wouldn’t have…
@SED These folks want a pretext to riot, loot, and raise hell.
Am in agreement too with being sick of police crimes being covered up or ignored.
Except for the fact that he took off his jacket and rolled up his sleeve so he can provoke more anger in the crowd, which didn’t work by the way, so the coward had to go push a woman to stroke violence in this crowd. Wonder why he didn’t shove on of those men there who would have pushed him back?
Well, he denied pushing the woman, and I’m not sure it’s clear on the video exactly what happened. Looks to me like at one point everybody was pushing everybody. But as with most disputes, I suspect the truth probably falls somewhere in between the two versions.
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