The subtitle for this post could be: NAME THAT ASSHAT!!!!! Because let’s be honest here, anyone I mention in this post needing sympathy can look in the dictionary between ‘shit’ and ‘syphilis’ (love that line). It makes it damn hard who I dislike more.
In the beginning I had a shred of respect for the occupy movement. After all, it was a lot of pissed-off people protesting the bullshit deals that Wall Street got back in 2008, and the fact that money was being traded for power to the detriment of the average person. Even if their solutions were dumber than a sack of monkey nuts, it’s a sentiment that any Tea Party person or libertarian could easily embrace. And I’m sure there are still people of good conscience who are still behind the movement and are doing so for the right reasons.
Of course, sitting in your own feces and lice for 2 months wile whining about the evils of the “1%” on you iPad doesn’t really endear you to the real “99%” of people who are either working or trying to find said work. Neither does becoming a mouthpiece movement for every idiot liberal cause, dumbshit handouts (like forgiving student load debt (which I would take advantage of immediately if Washington got THAT stupid)), and surrendering your movement to union thugs. Also, the destruction of property, blocking people who need to work for a living, knocking down old ladies, and not policing your own ranks of anarchists, idiots, and criminals makes you look stupid, not like legitimately aggrieved protestors. And it makes law-abiding people want to see a good tasing of a ridiculous occutard doing something stupid.
On the plus, the cops have made sure that your (bowel) movement continues by being just as stupid.
On the whole, I respect what the police have to do to keep order and enforce laws, from real crimes, to crowd control, to the futility of enforcing the drug war and other “victimless” crimes (a debate for another post). I also know that most police officers just want to serve their community and not get shot, hurt, or killed. And also, a lot of times, they have to do shit jobs like cleaning out occupiers.
None of this justifies police brutality. None of it.
And I’m a fan of hitting criminals with tasers, pepper spray, and the occasional tackle onto concrete when the situation warrants it. But when you have protestors contained behind barriers or in a line forming a human barricade, or wounded on the ground, that’s not the time to hit them with pepper spray or charge in swinging a baton, or lob a flash grenade into their midst. As much as I think some of the occutards do deserve a little roughing up (because our brand of police brutality usually isn’t fatal like in, for example, Iran), there’s no justification for the police being aggressors. Or rousting out the occupiers in the middle of the night after banning reporters (a favorite tactic of totalitarian regimes before they start shooting people).
One of the things that has become a concern of mine is the growing power of the police state (as this is part of the whole big government problem). This has come from an ungodly number of laws, including making things illegal that aren’t violating the rights of any other person, the acceptance of the surveillance state, where there is no line between suspect and non-suspect, and the whole War on Islamic Terrorists, which has exacerbated the other problems (and led to lots of TSA gate rape, for example).
My point here is that professionalism and restraint are what will give police the tools to disperse the majority of the occupiers peaceably. Because a legitimate protest is about making your voice heard, then either going home or being arrested to make a point. Most of these people are not criminals, and deserve to be accorded that respect. The one that fight, those are the ones that deserve the pepper spray and the power bomb on concrete.
I will put in a word for the local politicians who have to deal with the mess. Freedom of speech and expression are constitutionally protected. Clogging up parks and streets usually isn’t constitutionally protected, because that involves depriving others of their freedoms. Try to find the balance, take out the criminals in the occupy movement, and get the bad cops the hell away from there.
And as always, the cameras tell the true story. Both the occutards and the police should remember this. And not be dicks in front of the cameras.