I’m not anti-cop. While there are bad cops, I know better than to believe they make up a majority of police officers in this country. Hell, they’re not even a large minority.
That said, there appears to be something very disturbing about police in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Besides George Floyd, there was the 2017 murder of Justine Diamond who was shot by a police officer after she called the police. While speaking with one officer, his partner drew his weapon and killed her. That officer was convicted of the murder.
Yet over the weekend, yet another incident occurred, this one caught on video and posted to Instagram:
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This is called “assault” and isn’t a TTP for crowd control, riot control, or any other excuse some may come up with. Shooting Americans with non lethal projectiles while they’re peacefully filming you from their private residence is wrong, criminally and morally. . . #madness #assault #lightemup #wtf #le #riot #minneapolis #policestate #mrgunsngear #civilrights #militarized
Now, these are people standing on private property and they were attacked by police because they weren’t inside. They didn’t do anything, weren’t acting aggressively, or anything of the sort. They were just standing on the porch watching everything unfold.
While I get not requiring a warrant for police to stand on the porch or whatever, that’s still these people’s property. It’s part of their home, and they were assaulted while on their property hurting no one.
I don’t care if there’s a standard police procedure for this or whether or what any curfew orders may have said. This is just flat-out wrong.
If riot police are rushing down the street, there’s reason to believe there’s violence nearby. I, for one, would rather know it’s coming and where it is in relation to my home than to sit in my living room, oblivious, until a Molotov cocktail crashes through my livingroom window.
But I’m funny that way.
All of this suggests, though, that maybe George Floyd’s death wasn’t racially motivated, but was instead the result of a department in serious need of an overhaul. We have a documented murder, a video that sure looks like a murder, and at least two officers involved have a history of allegations of brutality. Couple that with this video and it sure looks like a department that doesn’t know how to train its officers in how and when to use force appropriately.
While Minneapolis is burning, the last thing the police really need to do is piss off more of the general public. People are angry enough as it is, but shooting at people–even with less-lethal rounds–isn’t the way to win friends and influence people. But it is a fantastic way to keep the riots going for a few more nights when all else is said and done.
It’s especially stupid because it was clear that they were recording the incident. What, did the officers think that “lighting them up,” as one suggested, would somehow make the residents less likely to post the video? Were they really that stupid?
Look, I’m not a police officer. I grew up around them, but I’m not one and therefore there are aspects to the job I will never understand. I get that.
But I am a member of the public and I understand the public perception has a role in how police departments operate. Or, at least, it should to some degree.
Shooting at unarmed people standing on their porch is going way too far.