“I shot the sheriff, But I didn’t shoot no deputy.”
-Bob Marley, “I Shot The Sheriff”
Police departments have been under fire (pun intended, obviously) since last year. Well, given that last year was only a few weeks ago it seems a little worse than it sounds, however, 2014 was a bad year for officers and their relationship with the media and an increasingly disgruntled public. 2015 is off to a bad start as well, but they’re taking public opinions into their own hands it seems.
During an undercover narcotics operation in Albuquerque, a disguised detective was accidently shot by one of his fellow officers. All names have not been released (as of the writing of this sentence), and I’m not an investigative journalist, nor a good researcher, but this mistake could have had fatal implications, and that’s good journalistic intuition (kind of, not really). Two Duke City detectives picked up their drug-dealing suspects and brought them to the scene. After one of the suspects returned from the apartment where he acquired meth to the parking lot, a herd of officers swarmed the vehicle, firing four times (Springer, 2015). Surprisingly, Dick Cheney was not part of the friendly fire, but then again, no one was hunting game, just drug dealers.
This situation occurred during the same time District Attorney Kari Brandenburg had charged Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez with murder in the shooting case of James Boyd, a 36-year-old homeless man, back in March of 2014 (Gallagher, 2015). If you’re not familiar with the controversial situation that enraged Albuquerque citizens (many, not all), you can read about it here: http://clknauf.com/2014/04/07/apd-and-protestors-throw-rocks-and-call-each-other-names-one-person-shot-before-recess/
Welcome back from reading and protesting. What exactly is happening with the quick triggers? Maybe it’s the fact that people are on edge, not just officers, of the possibility that America will eventually transition into a war-torn country due to the unnecessary violence. Have you ever been to a nation stricken from the consequences of battle? Have you ever watched like thirty seconds of the news? They don’t appear to be pleasant destinations nor on the bucket list for people to visit, but those mountain views are fantastic.
All of these situations could have been avoided, but both parties are to blame. We’re so set on pointing fingers then lashing out when we don’t get our way. Explain to me how riots and mockery are reasonable reactions to poor authoritative decision-making? Actually, don’t answer that because I already have a good idea how the argument would be presented and never will it reach a conclusion. If people don’t put themselves in sketchy or argumentative situations then problems can be avoided. If authorities rationalize these same situations better, or are trained to address the circumstance in a more civil manner, then the issues could also be avoided. If you’re not doing something wrong, don’t give people the impression you are because then you ultimately will do something wrong that escalates into an even more serious issue. If you can’t make a rational decision based off common sense and detailed analysis, don’t become a police officer. Seriously, get it together, America. Stop breaking the law and stop abusing power. Easier said than done.
Gallagher, M. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.abqjournal.com/524987/abqnewsseeker/da-to-seek-murder-charges-against-officers-in-james-boyd-shooting.html on January 15 2015
Springer, M. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.koat.com/news/watch-live-apd-chief-updates-undercover-officer-shooting/30632882 on January 15 2015