Police Abuse

We Filmed the Cops. People Changed Their Minds.

Videos of police abuse haven't stopped police brutality. But they've helped build a consensus for police reform. 


In the years since the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, sparked a wave of protests against abusive law enforcement, there has been a remarkable shift in public opinion about race and policing. 

A Washington Post poll released this week found that 69 percent of Americans say Floyd's killing represents a systemic problem with policing, while just 29 percent say it's an isolated incident; six years ago, the Post reports, more than half of Americans saw police killings of unarmed black men as isolated events, with just 43 percent viewing them as part of a wider trend. 

That shift has produced bipartisan support for activism against police violence. The Post poll found that 74 percent of Americans support recent protests sparked by the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Democrats were more likely to support the protests, but a majority of Republicans and independents backed them too. A Monmouth poll released last week found that 57 percent of Americans, including about half of white Americans, said police officers were generally more likely to treat black people unfairly than to mistreat white people, which The New York Times describes as a "drastic change" in public attitudes about racial disparities in policing.

As with nearly all instances of rapid social change, there are many factors at work. The Black Lives Matter movement has tirelessly emphasized racial disparities in law enforcement and made police reform an urgent national priority. Conservative activists have embraced criminal justice reforms that reject tough-on-crime policies. News coverage has become less deferential to police narratives. The political class has, in some instances, distanced itself from law enforcement. Social media has proven a potent tool for activists to organize and get out their message. None of these forces should be discounted. 

But perhaps the simplest story one can tell is this: We filmed the cops, and people changed their minds. 

For the last two decades, America has conducted an experiment in mass videography. Virtually everyone in the country now carries a camera in his or her pocket. In addition, our highways, streets, and sidewalks are watched by an array of public and private digital eyes, recording, if not everything, then much of the nation's public interactions—including with the police. 

In the early days of mass camera adoption, cops resisted public attempts to film them, often attempting to shut down and even destroy videos of their work taken by citizens. 

It's not hard to understand the resistance. Those ubiquitous cameras—on cellphones, on dashboards, in stores, on police uniforms—have repeatedly given the public deeply disturbing glimpses into how officers of the law do their jobs. 

They showed us the horrific final moments of George Floyd and Eric Garner, six years apart, as they slowly asphyxiated from the force that police officers exerted on their bodies, each man gasping for breath, crying out for their lives, struggling to form the words, "I can't breathe."

They showed us the shots a South Carolina cop fired into Walter Scott's back as he fled on foot after being pulled over for a broken taillight. They showed us the 40 seconds during which Minnesota cafeteria worker Philando Castille was pulled over by a Minneapolis patrolman and then shot to death after disclosing that he was carrying a firearm. They showed us the arrest of Sandra Bland, a Texas woman pulled over for failing to use a turn signal, as an angry cop pointed a weapon at her and screamed, "I will light you up!" (A few days later, she was found in her jail cell, hanged to death.) 

And over the last two weeks, cameras have given us a parade of videos showing how some in law enforcement behave when facing a national outcry over abuses of power and excessive use of force: with abuses of power and excessive use of force. 

Researchers have spent years digging into crime data and arrest reports in order to demonstrate the racial disparities in police work and sentencing. But charts and graphs and studies, while valuable, can only do so much. Images inevitably have a more visceral impact. 

Each video is an act of documentary filmmaking, and each one helps to tell a story. Although the particulars differ, that story has been remarkably consistent: police abusing their power to violent ends, especially when interacting with minorities. Tell a story enough times, show it happening again and again and again, and it reshapes the way people see the world. Over time, in the public mind, a pile-up of anecdotes eventually becomes data. 

As University of Wisconsin journalism professor Douglas McLeod, who studies the way news consumption affects culture and politics, recently told The New York Times, the steady stream of videos depicting police abuse, in combination with the distribution of those videos through social media, has changed the way people see law enforcement abuses: 

Dr. McLeod said that as videos showing police brutality against black people have appeared relentlessly on social media, they have helped persuade skeptical Americans that an endemic problem exists. "When these things accumulate over time, and we start to see more and more of these images, the evidence starts to become more incontrovertible," he said.

These videos not only show us what police do; they show us how that differs from what police say they do. The Minneapolis Police Department initially said in a press release that George Floyd's death stemmed from a "medical incident during a police interaction." The video shows an emotionless officer kneeling on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes as the victim begs for his mother and his life. Buffalo police said an elderly protester "tripped and fell"; a video shows he was pushed by two officers wearing face shields and carrying batons. The Texas cop who pulled Sandra Bland out of her car said he was afraid; the video Bland took of her own arrest shows that he was angry—and she was the one who was exhibiting fear. 

The tragedy is that these videos could not save the life of George Floyd, or of any of the other victims of police brutality who have come since. Images alone cannot substitute for action. But they can be a motivating force—a rallying point for a ground-up movement demanding change. 

There is already some evidence that this has begun: In a handful of large cities that have adopted reforms designed to reduce the use of force—including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, and Baltimore—police killings have dropped in recent years. The data, according to a FiveThirtyEight report on trends in police killings, suggest that "reforms may be working in the places that have implemented them. Many of these reforms were initiated in response to protests and public outcry over high-profile deaths at the hands of police." 

Abusive officers recently caught on video, meanwhile, are being swiftly disciplined: The two Buffalo officers who pushed the elderly protester were suspended without pay. All four officers involved in the incident that led to Floyd's death have already been charged. The officer whose chokehold resulted in Eric Garner's 2014 death, in contrast, wasn't fired until 2019

Minneapolis, meanwhile, is backing out of negotiations for a new contract with its police union. And when cameras aren't present, it's a point of contention: Among the causes for outrage in the police killing of Breonna Taylor during a no-knock raid in Louisville, Kentucky, this year is that the cops weren't wearing body cameras. Going forward, the city will require police to wear them. Earlier this month, the city's police chief was relieved from duty after it was discovered that officers involved in a separate shooting did not activate their cameras. 

It's true that some studies have found that body cameras do little to alter police behavior. The look of cold, almost bored, indifference on the face of the officer who knelt on Floyd, despite the conspicuous presence of onlookers filming the incident, suggests the limits of video to directly change law enforcement behavior; a police department press release noted that active body cams were worn during the incident. 

The numerous videos showing police abuse during demonstrations against police abuse provide more evidence that cameras alone don't stop police misconduct. As Reason's Eric Boehm wrote, it has sometimes seemed that the nation's police are determined to demonstrate exactly why people are protesting them in the first place. 

Yet even if videos aren't directly changing police behavior, they are almost certainly contributing to the public's shifting perception of that behavior, bolstering the case made by activists by making it harder and harder to deny. In turn, they are putting reforms that might have seemed difficult or impossible just a few years ago within reach. On its own, filming police brutality isn't enough. But each new clip that circulates shows us the vivid and excruciating reality of what has happened and what is happening—and demonstrates, over and over again, what desperately needs to change. 

NEXT: Amid Coronavirus Fears, 2 States Will Allow Online Voting

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. A few comment threads ago, people were calling an author all sorts of things because he said that non one from Team Red was supporting Amash’s Qualified Immunity act.


    39 co-sponsors, none from Team Red, the Team that really cares about Liberty we promise.

    1. Thanks for linking to the bill itself.

      1. Corona is big threat of the century which effect physically, mentally and financially/RDc To over come these difficulties and make full use of this hostage period and make online earning.

        For more detail visit the given link…….► Home Profit System

    2. LOL, the bill still doesn’t have any text in it beyond the title. Go click on the link and see for yourself.

      I’m surprised the bill doesn’t have 434 co-sponsors since it doesn’t actually say anything yet, but people will give you credit for jumping on its bandwagon.

      1. Nice snark, but the bill text has both been widely published and submitted to the Justice Committee. I’m pretty sure the people who have signed on to it have read it, because it’s LITERALLY FOUR PAGES LONG and the binding text is LITERALLY A PARAGRAPH LONG.

        Here’s that paragraph for you and others who are bad at finding information on the internet.

        It shall not be a defense or immunity to any action brought under this section that the defendant was acting in good faith, or that the defendant believed, reasonably or otherwise, that his or her conduct was lawful at the time when it was committed. Nor shall it be a defense or immunity that the rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution or laws were not clearly established at the time of their deprivation by the defendant, or that the state of the law was otherwise such that the defendant could not reasonably have been expected to know whether his or her conduct was lawful.

        No, seriously, where is Team Red, the team of Freedom?

        1. Nice.

          1. So you don’t think it’s nice.

            1. Why would I think it’s a cough drop?

              1. I was without work for 6 months when my former Co-worker finally recommended me to start freelancing from home… It was only after I earned $5000 in my first month when I actually believed I could do this for a living! Now I am happier than ever… I work from home and I am my own boss now like I always wanted…Everytime I see someone like that I say START FREELANCING MAN! This is where I started… Reading Continuously

        2. Cool, then why isn’t the bill text available at Congress’s own website? If it’s so short, that is. Is it normal for introduced bills to take forever to be available for viewing at either Thomas or Congress.gov?

          Such a short, universally agreed upon as good bill should have no trouble making it out of a Democratic Party majority House and its committees. We’ll see.

          1. Oh come on, Pelosi would never add a bunch of unrelated shit into a bill after R’s had agreed to it.

            1. Agreed, R Mac, but they don’t need to put that in the bill to begin with. Assuming Amash was actually serious about this, just file a bill with X text in the body. Should be easy if it’s only a few lines. Later, in committee, core it out and put in what leadership wants.

              But to not even submit bill text to Thomas or Congress, doesn’t speak much to Amash’s seriousness. Then again, how many bills did the guy submit in 10 years there? I’ve heard of the gas station naming, but what else?

              Maybe the screwup is at the website’s end?

          2. While we are at it, how about revoking qualified immunity for other government officials? The IRS agent that fucks you over, the bleeding heart judge that gives a wrist slap to a violent offender or parole board that releases assholes who haven’t served their entire sentence and immediately go out and commit a crime.

            Even better, how about we get rid of qualified immunity for Governors and Congress? Wait wait….. no sense in taking this to extremes, right?

            QI shouldn’t be a get out of jail free card for deliberate and damaging action, but as a government official, there’s no action including “no-action” that won’t piss off someone and end in a lawsuit. The only thing I can think of that is worse than huge government is huge government where those whose actions are necessary won’t do them because fear of personal legal reprisals.

            1. You have a valid point, but doesn’t it make way more sense to just enumerate some things that QI would cover rather than give blanket immunity? Congress’ epic cluster fuck of criminal budget mismanagement probably wouldn’t happen if there was some fear of reprisal. I don’t see us invading Libya or Syria if the executive was held criminally liable for not meeting certain conditions. As it is now, QI seems far more about people in power giving them selves a blank check to wreak havoc than it does about preventing frivolous lawsuits.

          3. Heh, you’d have to ask them. It’s not my turn to work down at congress.gov.. ;P

            1. Maybe next time don’t use them as your cite then? Here’s an idea, instead of bitching about someone else not researching on the internet to support your post, you could link to something that actually does?

              1. My cite is the source of record, which people should refer to, going forward. Given that the original post linked repeatedly to Amash’s twitter, where it was originally published before being submitted, I figured we were all capable of doing basic internet.



                1. The original post was criticized cuz the words of the “bill” weren’t available at .gov. You used .gov as your source, which still doesn’t have the words, then still complained that people didn’t do their own search for the words of the bill. Ok Jeff.

        3. Amash is formally excommunicado, ergo they will not support the bill as a display of fealty to Trump. I assume.

          No doubt about it both political parties are absolute fucking poison, bad for liberty and good governance. And it has never been more apparent than in this moment, libertarianism is a dead letter. No more space for libertarian ideas.

        4. If this is the language, the bill sure looks fatally flawed from a legal perspective (and deeply unserious, or, better, a virtue-signaling joke).

          There’s a world of difference between having immunity from suit and having a defense to a suit. I know it’s directed at dirty lying police, but the idea that “good faith”, “REASONABLE belief that actions were lawful”, or that the cop had no way of REASONABLY knowing his actions we’re unlawful are not available defenses to suit is beyond absurd.

          This language would codify ex post facto liability and give any such belatedly defined “unlawful” acts a per se standard of proof (i.e. liability automatic if act proven without consideration of mental state). Basically, it’s a double-decker violation of traditional due process rights.

          Per se or strict liability only works where there is a defined regulation or standard to compare the act against. It should go without saying (although Amash puts the lie to this) that per se liability for commission of previously undefined acts is pretty much the Western definition of injustice and has been for centuries.

          -Immortan Joe

    3. Yeah we also made fun of him for making a big deal about a bill that doesn’t exist yet except for the title, which ends with “and for other purposes”.

      1. Never fear….. just about every “reform bill” enacted so quickly is nothing more than a political over-reaction and inevitably will end in far more chaos than what it pretends to correct. Recent bail reform is just the latest example.

      2. Google Search : “and for other purposes”. site:congress.gov

        About 442,000 results (0.36 seconds)

        I have the feeling that this might just be a term of art, and not have whatever malign meaning you are imputing into it.

        1. I’m not putting any specific meaning into it. We don’t know what it will mean yet. And the person who will have the most input into what it means will be Nancy Pelosi. So why would a Republican sign on to it at this point?

    4. Amash is so toxic and incompetent, no bill of his is going to make it, regardless of merit.

    5. I have made $16498 in one month by working at home. When I lost my office job 3 month ago, I was very upset and an unsuccessful try for a job hunt I was found this online job. and now I am able to earn thousands at home easily. Everybody can do this and earn money so easy… Read More

  2. “But perhaps the simplest story one can tell is this: We filmed the cops, and people changed their minds. ”

    Or – We filmed the cops, made sure the edit fit the narrative, and people changed their minds.

    The senior citizen agitator was attended by EMTs within 20 seconds. Finding the video that contains those last seconds is harder than finding a centrist democrat.

    1. In Suderman’s defense, he has never seen any unedited videos of these culture war battles. He still knows to this day that those Covington kids were vile little racists. If it’s not part of Vox’s “Explained” series, he won’t watch it.

    2. What meaning does it have that the “agitator” (…) was attended by EMTs within seconds?

      It’s ok for the state’s jackbooted thugs to shove people for speech because when they do, the other part of the state attends to their injuries?

      1. Clearly his brain was trained at the Paul Krugman School of Broken Windows.

        1. s^Windows/Skulls/

          1. :ok_hand: :clapping:

    3. Why does it matter that he was attending quickly? He was still assaulted by police despite being no threat to them.

      1. not clear but if you refer to Floyd, no he was no threat directly tp the coppers, other than physically and violently resisting and fighting their orders to get his sorry self into the back seat of the cruiser. Don’t forget he is BIG guy…..
        video also shows he was fmaoing at the mouth and compaining I can’t breathe while he was still standing up…. taking him to ground gently was probably a tactic to prevent him taking a nasty and occibly injurious hard fall onto the macadam. He consintued ressting and fighting them even as he was ON the ground… might explain why the neck business.

        Anyone lese here read the full autopsy report? Some very interesting things in that, game changers.Pay particular attentioin to the toxicology report. VERY interesting. I’m sure it will all come out at the trials for these four guys. Ya might go have a squiz some time…… we also have the foootage from the four body cams, not yet released. Any chance those might tell a different story than the one we’ve all seen?

        No question they were harsh with him.

      2. Cops were moving people back in a line. The agitator (per his arrest record) was walking straight at them. He clearly knew their job was to move people peacefully away. Since he was 75 he should know that his frailty a risk when trying to stop the police from getting into position. He clearly had the intent of making himself a spectacle. The police barely nudged him and he went down like a sack of potatoes. There is one thing to protest peacefully, there is another to purposely incite violence. When his fellow friend was asked if the police should be fired, she stuttered as if unprepared because this was a spectacle for the cameras. If anyone wants to review 1776 crowd control, I am sure this “police brutality” argument would subside.

    4. Cop violence is ok when they leave it behind them for someone else to clean up. The old fart has no case, he is on his own, because someone else cleaned up after the cops.

    5. There’s probably some really good cases you could make about how the edited videos don’t tell the story: Rodney King is the classic example, but there’s also some of that in the Ahmaud Arbery case as well. That old man protestor is not really one of those.

      1. seems from reports Ive read that the old guy gently laid himself carefully down on the hardpan, carefully placed his cell phone next to his right hip, and triggered a cute theatre trick that made re liquid squirt in fairly large volume out his left ear…. and some funny stuff with two masks on his face, with some stuff in betwen them….
        Seems he has a history of attention getting, play acting, political theatre, etc. An dvanced amateur play actor making a scene to get attention.

    6. How is this relevant? The point in this article is that the cops lied about what happened.

    7. Precisely. I keep seeing people expressing their agreement with BLM, and just as all the sites had their little links describing how they were acting to fight COVID, now they’re all signaling how they’re fighting racism.

      The only problem is that racism isn’t the problem here. Police brutality is the problem, and it happens to people of all races. I agree in principle with the idea that black lives matter (lower case)… obviously. I’ve not heard anyone say they don’t. But the organization of that name is behaving as if only black lives matter when they continue to protest only a subset of police killings and assaults. They’re giving cops who brutalize everyone equally a pass on their part of the blame… if they’re not targeting black individuals specifically, they’re fine. There has not been any evidence I’ve seen to suggest that the cop who killed Floyd targeted blacks… my guess is he is a standard issue ass-kicking brutal cop, one who would happily assault and possibly kill anyone for contempt of cop. There are dozens of anecdotes like the ones mentioned above that involve white subjects being brutalized, but they weren’t national news because they didn’t fit a certain media narrative.

      This racial component is part of the leftist narrative, and the simpering Reason staff should go a little deeper than to just parrot the left’s talking points about racial injustice when it’s patently obvious to anyone who looks that racism is not the issue here. What are you trying to do here? Do you want to get to the root of the problem, or are you merely satisfied with playing footsie with the leftist establishment? Display a little reason here, will ya?

  3. In the years since the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, beating of Rodney King sparked a wave of protests against abusive law enforcement…

    1. I was looking for such a comment. Rodney King was the first real eye opener for me; I had always not trusted cops and always believed they were assholes, assumed they administered a dollop of extra-judicial justice from time to time. But I did not think they had such built-up rage. It’s one thing to handle someone roughly, tackle him, even punch him to get his attention. Another thing entirely to beat the living tar out of someone like that, no matter what a loser they had corraled.

    2. I thought the same thing. I was in college when Rodney King happened (and the unrest that followed the acquittal). I remember opinion pieces saying this was a turning point: You’d never know when someone with a camera was nearby (even then… handycams, I guess).

      With that said, “this time” is feeling more like that turn. We need the data to back up the images, though.

  4. You may be thinking “cry me a river”, but good luck dealing with next weekend’s protests/riots/whatever if the cops decide its a good day to strike to send a message.

    “I used to talk cops out of leaving the job. Now I’m encouraging them,” Yates said in conclusion. “You aren’t going to have to abolish the police, we won’t be around for it.”

    1. That sounds like a silly statement. Why not remain a cop, collect a paycheck, and refuse to interfere when crimes are committed by an African-American suspect?

      1. Not all mayors are democrats who will tell you to stand down.

      2. Why not remain a cop, collect a paycheck, and refuse to interfere when crimes are committed by an African-American suspect?
        In essence this is what the cops in Chicago are doing. They term it “Staying Fetal”

    2. All being a cop means is that they weren’t smart enough, or connected enough, to pass the civil service exam for the fire department.

      I’m sure this will end well.

      1. Best description of a cop ever.

    3. When the riot police stopped showing up to the protests in my city the “riots” stopped. Turns out indiscriminately shooting tear gas into crowds was what was starting the violence, surprising no one with an IQ over 80

      1. What city is that? Because if you’re city only had “riots” and not riots, good for you.

        1. Probably in deepest darkest Vermont.

        2. Didnthappenburg, in the county of Fantasyland.

        3. The ‘Burgh

      2. Why are you so vague about your “city”?

    4. Good riddance and don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

      Once they’ve all quit, we can build a new police force from scratch with no union contracts to worry about, new policies and nobody who learned the corruption inherent in the old policies.

      1. and when you get robbed and there is no police?

        1. Then I won’t be charged for burying the bodies of the robbers.

        2. 1. what part of “build a new police force from scratch” did you not understand?
          2. The police wouldn’t be there to stop the robber anyway.
          3. Go look at national averages to clearance rates. Outside of murder it’s abysmal, and the murder clearance rates aren’t that great. The clearance rate for robbery is 29.7%

          FBI UCR Clearances

    5. “I used to talk cops out of leaving the job. Now I’m encouraging them,” Yates said in conclusion. “You aren’t going to have to abolish the police, we won’t be around for it

      What a load of nonsense. The only thing that will change is if the very concept of policing and police forces are radically altered.

      I don’t believe that will happen. This will all die down in a few months, as always, and cops will return to harassing and tormenting every citizen in their field of vision, demanding they “respect my authoritIE”

      1. Let me fix it for you

        I don’t believe that will happen. This will all die down in a few months, as always, and cops will return to doing what is incentivized by the politicians they answer to

  5. //That shift has produced bipartisan support for activism against police violence.//

    That “shift” is called mass delusion.

    1. The media doesn’t feel like posting the videos of police encounters when use of deadly force is justified. I wonder why?

    2. I’m truly glad police violence has become a bipartisan issue. That’s great. Unfortunately, now we need to work on arson, theft, assault, destruction of private property which were all previously settled.

      1. Yeah, and meanwhile the race pimps and the usual suspects are doing their best to make sure that police violence is not a bipartisan issue.

  6. Did the Washington Post care about accuracy when it attacked those Catholic MAGA hat wearing high school kids? Did the Washington Post host an unedited video of the events leading up the Indian protestor beating his drum in their faces?

  7. In turn, they are putting reforms that might have seemed difficult or impossible just a few years ago within reach.

    Whether it’s truly within reach remains to be seen. Has anyone checked to see if St. Louis has gone back yet to treating its poorest citizens as cash machines? It’s only a matter of time before all these civic leaders realize that their budgets are suffering from a lack of petty enforcement fees and they slip right back to aggressive tactics. Video or no video.

  8. Forty five years of the LP futilely railing against policing abuse. Finally something catches the eye and conscience of the public. Let’s hope all the noise and angst leads to the kinds of reform libertarians have longed for.

    1. The important lesson is that this sequence of events displays the benefits of pragmatic, think-tank libertarianism compared to unconditional Rothbardism. Libertarians, once again, are ahead of public opinion, and through the policy work by organizations like the Cato Institute there is a whole set of reforms ready for use by all who are willing to listen. Imagine if this same sequence of events happened and all libertarians had to say was, “uhh, taxation is theft?” We would be shut out of the conversation entirely.

      1. What exactly is libertarian about these protests or their objectives?

        1. Police brutality has always been an issue of concern for libertarians. Ending the war on drugs, pushing back against victimless crimes in general, decreasing the size and scope of law enforcement, and securing unconditional recognition of human rights has always been an objective for libertarians.

          1. Police brutality has always been an issue of concern for libertarians.

            Community has also always been an issue of concern for libertarians; that doesn’t mean libertarians support communism.

            Ending the war on drugs, pushing back against victimless crimes in general, decreasing the size and scope of law enforcement, and securing unconditional recognition of human rights has always been an objective for libertarians.

            And if you think these protests/riots are about any of that, you’re a fool. BLM is not about liberty, it’s about imposing a different totalitarian vision on Americans.

            1. I am in no way supportive of the riots or of BLM. This is a much larger issue than that. You are severely overestimating their numbers if you think that all who are interested in police accountability in the wake of George Floyd’s death are members of BLM. There is far more going on right now than simply protests and riots.

    2. Meanwhile, in Twitter-land, people are calling out the libertarians for not being saying what we’ve been saying for all that time. There was even an article here about that… it’s been one of the things Ls have been talking about forever, but the teeming masses that make up the Twitterverse and the audience for the mainstream media have gotten so good at tuning out opinions that they don’t want to hear that they’re not even aware of this, or appear to be.

  9. SHOOT the cops (take your cameras outcha pocket, people)

  10. Too many laws means there aren’t enough decent candidates for cop jobs so cities hire thugs. The solution is obvious.

    1. ^This.

  11. seeing is believing. had a conversation at work with a guy who religiously supports cops, and he said “this was murder.” discussion went on into the “isolated indecent” arguments, so we had him pull up some of the other videos from other cases…… he gets it now. i think Floyd is going to go down in history as the moment when enough people were faced with an example that is indefensible, that it will finally break through the partisan stranglehold on the conversation. not everyone is ready to accept the racial aspect, but everyone sees the problem with police attitude, culture, and actions.

    1. check out the Freethoughtproject online they show daily police abuses and at least they report when they are prosecuted as well. i mention that because some seem to think they are never prosecuted.

    2. I’m not so sure. Righteous anger has a shelf-life and this is an election year.

      1. color me optimistic….. but you are right about attention spans. I’ve seen that there is already some distraction to removing old statues instead of making meaningful change…..

    3. There are a couple of these every year, probably about 40 this millennium. Those are a few isolated incidents. And they are 2/3 white victims.

      So what exactly are people supposed to “get”?

      1. It’s pretty easy to find a few hundred on youtube if you look.

        I do caution you. You really need to research due to some ‘editing’ done by either cops or citizens to make a point.

        But really. It’s not hard to find blatant police malfeasance on video. This is NOT a rare occurrence.

        1. First of all, we were talking about killing by police, now you shift the goalposts to “blatant police malfeasance”. Potentially unjustified killings by police are rare, and blacks are affected less than whites.

          Second, even if we look at all forms of police misconduct, there are more than three hundred million police stops every year and a million police officers; a few hundred examples on YouTube does not demonstrate a widespread problem.

          Third, these are local problems and it makes no sense to talk about it at a national level. I’m sure Democrat-run large cities have bad police departments; they also have bad schools, bad DMVs, bad infrastructure, bad social services, bad race relations, bad business climates, bad courts, bad politicians. The problem isn’t the institution of the police, the problem is that government is bad in certain locations, and bad policing is only one of many bad consequences.

          1. This. And this: Including the Michael Brown case leading an article condemning police abuse, implying that it was a case of police abuse, is absolute scumbag journalism of the most atrocious kind. The officer was clearly attacked by Brown and that was recognized by a jury and Obama’s justice department. How can I view the article that follows with any trust when it starts like that?

            1. The Treyvon Martin case is like this too.

              This is a disinformation campaign to deflect from the problem so cops can say that you are using a false narrative.

              There are millions of videos online showing abuse. I have watched hundreds if not thousands of them, but I only agree with a few hundred as being truthful.

          2. The reason I shifted (and you are correct, I did) is because this IS a national problem.

            The problem is the lie. Police are not here to protect anyone. They are here to impose whatever law the current government wishes to impose. Police are not security. Police are security theater. This IS a national problem.

            We now have national police. In 1946 we fought the Battle of Athens GA. In that battle, civilians deposed a corrupt sheriff and handed over authority to a newly elected officials. The governor let it go without calling in the national guard because the people who threw dynamite at the sheriffs office until the deputies surrendered did not keep power. They counted the votes and let the winner of the election take control.

            With national police, this can never happen. A corrupt government in the US cannot be overthrown by the people. The national government will intervene and will ALWAYS SIDE WITH THE POLICE WITH OVERWHELMING FORCE. Even days later, the FBI or staties will come in and arrest or murder anyone involved regardless of the outcome or motivations like Reagan did to the BPP in CA before passing the harshest gun control law in CA history.

            This is why rioters no longer go after the capitol or the police station (district 3 in Seattle is a new thing), but go after softer targets like stores. You can’t assault a police station without significant casualties well after the event. But you can trash state revenue by killing the businesses and if you hate capitalism, well, that’s just gravy.

            This is what Lincoln did to us. We no longer have a federal republic. We live in a national socialist democracy and have since 1865.

            1. There are plenty of things wrong with police, and there are plenty of things they shouldn’t be doing. However, they do in fact get a lot of violent criminals off the street, and they do reduce violent crime rates greatly. Furthermore, any jurisdiction is free to limit or eliminate its police force if it wants to.

              I’m all for Minneapolis getting rid of its police department if voters want that. But such a thing should not happen through mob rule or riots.

              And the town I live in will keep its police department, whether you
              or the rioters approve of it or not.

              1. Just because some of them sometimes do a good job is no reason to keep them.

                Your county sheriff is your constitutional right to have civilian control over law enforcement. Police bypass that. Even tyrants do swell things sometimes.

                I am not for abolishing law enforcement, just professional (progressive) law enforcement that does not allow civilians to control them.

                Dismantle the police and buff up your sheriff. IMO that’s the way to go.

      2. the only thing exceptional about these incidents is that people notice them. and you are right that it happens to people of all races, but the areas where the culture of police departments has become the most rotten are areas where blacks are the majority. i don’t think the problem is a result of current racism, but it is a definite problem that disproportionately hits black communities.

        but what people should get, is that accountability and ethics have gotten so bad in our police communities, that 4 cops didn’t see any major problem with having a knee in someone’s neck, who said they couldn’t breathe, for 9minutes….. including 3 minutes after they couldn’t find a pulse….. that cops will casually push a 70yr old man to the ground, and then casually keep walking as he lies bleeding and unconscious…. that a cop can shoot a fleeing suspect in the back (something that lands anyone else in jail) and get off Scott free…. that (insert any of the countless scenarios here) and police walk away with no consequences, and no feeling that what they did was even wrong, because that kind of behavior has become normal to them. you don’t have to get the racial part, but if you don’t get the police brutality part you are missing it deliberately.

    4. God I hope you’re right. I really do.

      But I have little hope for real change.

    5. I don’t think the Floyd case alone would have done it. But some of the LEO behavior during the protests may have sealed the deal.

      1. yeah…… read some comments from some of the national guard being deployed, and one of them said it felt more like they were there to protect the protestors from the police than the other way around.

  12. Why are we establishing policy based upon opinion and opinion polls? Are facts dead? One million officer contacts nationally daily, much less than 1% result in any complaints; 1000 deaths by police annually ( a steady number), 50 determined to be questionable (.5%) of which most result in internal, disciplinary action, not rising to criminal action. Yet 200,000 death annually (and rising very rapidly) from medical malpractice and no one cares!

    1. Complaining about cops can get you arrested. LOTS of video showing that on youtube. Complaints routinely are thrown away without being read right in front of the person filing the complaint.

      Governments lie. Remember, we trust citizens over government until government can prove beyond a reasonable doubt. In the US the tie goes to the citizen by law.

      1. This ^. There is no way I would file a complaint about a cop, and I’ve had a few incidents for which I would have liked to. But you might as well paint a target on your house.

  13. Perhaps you should start filming the Antifa takeover of my city and see how people respond to that.

    1. Too local.

    2. Reason magazine: progress uber alles

    3. Film and post. Link to your Youtube channel and I will watch it.

  14. De-defund police departments & End qualified immunity.

    1. You can defund yours. You’re not going to defund ours. Not gonna happen.

  15. Consensus means everybody agrees. I don’t think that’s the case here.

  16. People need find out who the number one police trainer is in the US – Dave Grossman…his training is turning cops into paranoid warriors who see all civilians as threats who’s sole purpose is to kill cops. Every citizen is guilty. Every citizen needs to be challenged, questioned, interrogated, identified and categorized into either “less of a threat” or “deadly threat.” Any citizen who challenges, questions or refuses a cop’s commands or demands automatically becomes a “wolf” and, in Grossman’s words, “Wolves need to die” either through deprivation of liberty or outright extermination. On top of this Grossman teaches cops that if they kill someone, they will HAVE THE BEST SEX OF THEIR LIVES. I am not making this up. (Look him up. His training course is called, “Killology” and he is booked [by his own admission] 300 days a year around the United States training cops.) There is no such thing as “community policing” or “protecting and serving.” From the moment an officer gets up in the morning until he or she goes to sleep at night…there is only surviving, and God help anyone who threatens that survival…whether it is a real or perceived threat. And non-compliance, suspicious behavior, or even abnormal behavior is seen as a threat.

    1. The Warrior Cop… yes. We know Grossman well.

  17. Many of the acolytes of the pathetic and increasingly deranged dictator-wannabe Orange Man are conspicuously absent from this conversation. Interesting.

  18. That should be “Coleman Hughes”

  19. I am a black man. I want white moderates to be on my side. That is the problem with this “fight the police, “defund the police” nonsense. Are police the number one problem that is causing black people to live lives with far fewer resources than white America? You want to continue to fight for MLK’s Dream? He fought for a few things. Equal access to public services, education and the right to vote are the three most prominent. Black youth votes at about a 50% clip. That is why a bunch of old white guys run too many state and local governments, not to mention Trump. Today, the barrier for black kids is huge loans if they try to go to college. As opposed to having the national guard walk you into a school? Which is fixed if they vote at a 70% clip? So we have made big progress. Black kids need someone to tell them when they are wrong. Integration did one bad thing: in the old days, I got my @ss kicked if I played around with my education. Today we got a bunch of old liberals who cheer any stupid thing a black kid does. This time around reminds me of the useless Million Man March, when everybody cheered and not a d@mn thing was done to improve the lives of black people. Please, want for black children what you want for your children…Isn’t that a respectable career and them not in the street fighting with the police?

    1. Police are not the problem.

      Lack of liberty is the problem. Without liberty there is no justice.

      Lack of liberty and justice has been a racial issue for a long time, but since 1865 (debatable but certainly since Wilson) has been a problem for everyone.

      If we want to fix the problem, we end the property tax and everything it funds.

    2. Most of the badly named “defund the police” proposals discuss moving some of the money dedicated to police overtime pay (traffic direction around construction cones for example) to programs like youth summer jobs, drug rehab etc.

      1. Sounds like a Great Society

  20. Fitting that you’d show a fraud narrative as the image for this article.

    1. Can you articulate the crime the officer placed his hand on this man to arrest him for?

      If the cop cannot, he is wrong per our own Constitution.

      Remember, curfew is an order, not a law. The 1st amendment does not recognize orders and neither should any citizen.

  21. Coproaches scurry and hide when you turn on the light.

    Daylight is the best disenforcement.

    1. Yeah. Cops HATE cameras.

  22. A Monmouth poll released last week found that 57 percent of Americans, including about half of white Americans, said police officers were generally more likely to treat black people unfairly than to mistreat white people,

    but statistics from the past five years or so show a different reality. Hard numbers are facts, not polls which are SO easy to manipulate.

    I’m a grey haired white guy, calm and cooperative, respectful, and I’ve twice been SERIOUSLY harrassed by the dirty coppers of a large city a couple hours from my home. January night, Northwest, clear and cold out.. cop lights me up after I drove by the truck loading dock at which he was “hiding”.. followed me a mile or so, when I turned onto a side street he turned on his lights. Belligerent from the git go. I started to get out of the car to walk back and talk to him, normal at that time, he went ballistic, started screaming at me to GET BACK IN THE CAR……. he got my license and registration, went to his car, well above ten minutes, still sitting there. Two new cars two coppers each joined him. I had left my driver’s window down for fresh crixp air… they figured it was closed cause it was cold and they had me pegged as a wimp. They are talking amongst themselves, standing in the street next the car that stopped me. They were discuccing HOW they could bait me into going off physically on them so they could “have some fun”. I was SHOCKED. NOTHING so far could give rise to that plan. I think they kept me trapped there for near half an hour, I had to listen to them the whole time. When the dirty copper came back and handed me not a fix it ticket but a moving violatioin for a “non working headlight” I said nohting signed it, handed it back to him, all without a word. Rolled up the window and sat there waiting for them all to leave. After they did I toook out a camera and took pictures showing the car and the houses it was parked in front of, and both low and high beam headlamps working. Digital so I made sure the date was set properly for the files. Printedup a set of colour glossy photographs, no paragraph on the back explaing what each one was, as I would be presenting them at trial. No circles and arrows, either. Showed up at the trial and there were no coppers to testify. Judge HAD to toss it. So I did not get to tell the court what dirtbags they keep around.

    Several years later same city same stinkpot attitude, I was on a road bike, came into a construction area where the right lane narrowed, a gold coloured Crown Vic came up next to me and it seemed deliberately moved right to squeeze me off against the traffic cones.. I hollered, swerved right between a pair of cones and into the work zone to keep from getting hit. No markings on the car. Right away the whoop whoop screamed.. I stopped, HE pulled into the work zone, two other coppers came out he lit into me for screaming at him, VERY belligerent…. I had stopped still astraddle the bike, feet on the ground. I was armed, and did NOT want him to know, so hunkered down and did not go off on him verbally. He railed on me/demanded my driving license. I said I am not requred to present, but I will iID myself. I KNOW my license would tag me as having the Mother May I Card. He was mad enough I was certain he’d take my handgun just cause he wanted to be a butt. He KNEW I was right… s he accepted it. My name did come up. He railed on me some more and DONT YOU EVER scream at a police officer again… I had tried to explain that I did not realise WHO was inside the car, all I knew was that THAT car swerved right and drove me into the cones, so I had to take hard evasive actioin. I screamed as a warning in case the driver did not realise I was there. Not good enough. He had nothing on me, so told me I was free to go. WHEW. If he had patted me and found the gun I would NOT have made the event to whcih I was going. Same stinky attitude as the copper in that city ten years earlier. I’ve had cops be stupid,m ornery but those two, and their pals, are by far the wrost I’ve ever contacted… same cituy. Both middle aged white males. with inferiority complexes and HIUGE chips on their shoulders.

    No, not all cops are like that. most are decent folks trying to do their job well. But when cops deliberatey provoke to violence, WHY are they surprised when they GET IT? In the first case it would have beem lil ol ME with one story, and those big six copopers with theirs, which they’d synchronise later that evening. AFTER they’d put me i hospital.

  23. Things will not change with the cops untila few thigns happe.

    END immunity. Hold them personally responsible for their decisions. If they blow it and someone sues, let their bond and insurance pay fo rit not the city tax money.

    END criinal enforcement of ALL laws/crimes that do not involve a directly harmed victim. Speeing, possessin of certain items, including hardware and plant matter and cheicals… If some identifiable individual was not harmed, no crime. INfractins, civil violations, etc. No jail time no arrest, etc. This would end about half of current cop activity. And possessiing/selling/buying/making “substances” deemed “not cool” are NOT “crimes”.

    RESTORE voting and firearms rights once a guy’s sentence is served and he is no logner a ward of the court. This means after parol,e probatioin, etc. NO REASON he shold be denied possession of weapons IF he has takien care of all court ordered requriements. This would remove a HGGE number of techinical:crimes”. CLEAR the guy’s public record so he can get a job again. This lifetime pipeline for one blowit is wrong, and condemns people to failiure.

    END police unions and their meddling in law enfrocement. They make cops think they are someting special and priviledged. It also fosters cops “proving themse’ves” in the quote races.. yea, there ARE no quotas. Baloney. Even in the breakroom there are qotes, even if not official ones.

    END the militarisation ovf cops.. training, equipping ltactics… no knock warrants should be a once a year event. No more MRAPS, tacticool tpys, battle rattle…… teach them HOW to and that they SHOULD deescalate wen possible.

    When a coper proves hmomself incapable of acting within policy, FIRE him and peramanently mark his record so he can NEVER work LE again except possibly at a “safe” desk job. NO MORE public contact.

  24. If the public finally woke up to acknowledge the police state, do they know how to fix it? I doubt it. Why? “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil, for every one hacking at the root.” Henry David Thoreau
    Only striking the root cause, authoritarianism, i.e., putting violence before reason by initiating it, threatening it against all, most of whom are innocent, but all deserve to be considered innocent until proven guilty by due process, not “trial by cop”.
    When authority, i.e., the public sector, is judged like the private sector, not by a double standard that deifies it, then reason, rights, and choice will reign, instead of demigods.

    1. Lincoln did this. Instead of rule by consent we now have rule by force and government has a monopoly on force.

      Then they created the property tax and that has us paying for our own tyranny largely through police and public schools. It is slavery of everyone.

      The real problem is rolling back the dialog that Lincoln was in any way a good man and that the Confederates were traitors. The opposite is true.

      Until we can get past the lie that the Union is the government we the people created using the Declaration of Independence, we cannot be free from this tyranny.

  25. Those guys are great, belive us – sex düsseldorf we chat every day with them! So you can try too…

  26. Was Chauvin heard hurling racial epithets in the midst of killing Floyd?

  27. Oh my God, where to begin?

    Dateline Berlin: 1939
    ‘In the years since the burning of the Reichstag, which sparked a wave of protests against seditious Jews & Communists, there has been a remarkable shift in public opinion about those traitors and their critical part in the defeat and humiliation of German during the Great War.

    A Das Reich poll released this week found that 69 percent of Germans say the dire economic straits in which the country now finds itself represents a systemic problem with both Jews and Communists, while just 29 percent say it’s an isolated incident; six years ago, Das Reich reports, more than half of Germans saw Jews as just ordinary citizens, with just 43 percent viewing them correctly as part of a wider and very dangerous conspiracy.’ Now, it is clear, we know better!

    ‘That shift has produced bipartisan support for activism against both Jews and Communists. The Das Reich poll found that 74 percent of Germans now support recent Brownshirt marches & the Krystallnacht protests sparked by the Jewish killing of vom Rath in Paris. A Nazi poll released last week found that 57 percent of Germans, including about half of all pure Aryans, said Jews were generally more likely to treat Good German citizens unfairly than to mistreat criminals and perverts, which Das Reich describes as a “drastic change” in public attitudes about Jewish malfeasance and betrayal.’

    Can we not even hear ourselves?
    Goebbels would be so proud!

    Yes, after 6 years of relentless propaganda, are we surprised to discover that: “A lie told once remains a lie…but a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth.’?

    For 6 years+ we’ve hammered and hammered and hammered yet again this Progressive ‘truth’ that Policing in America is both racist and brutal. Is it surprising that–today– more Americans, umbilical’d to the Main Stream Media have come to believe it?

    Never mind that — in reality — we have 850,000 law enforcement officers…who invest over 1.7B hours annually….to protect 330M of us (1 cop per 365 civilians)….from 9M criminal acts (1.2M of them violent)….tallied in 60M police/civilian encounters. I mean, gosh, if we only paid attention to reality (as opposed to 20 second sensational video snippets)….we might reach the obviously ‘insane’ conclusion that the VAST MAJORITY of police/civilian interactions are entirely and completely benign.

    And if that were true what would headline the Nightly News?

    Even if we assume that the 10-20 some Hi-Profile Disasters (like George in Minneapolis) …the ones everyone can recite….could be under-counting by 100X, that still gives us only 2000 ‘bad cops’ (assuming again each disaster is a direct result of horrible policing) out of 850,000. That means that 99.8% of all policemen are NOT racist SOB’s who enjoy killing defenseless people.

    That also means that 99.997% of all police/civilian interacts are NOT examples of police brutality.
    That also means that 99.9998% of all police labor hours are invested without any killing of the innocent.

    For God’s sake….a little common sense….some simple arithmetic….a large dose of humility….and some minimal ability to appreciate the tremendous stress applied to that Thin Blue Line as it strives to peacefully, and lawfully, and congenially separate the ordinary citizen from the barbarism which otherwise would engulf us….all that would go a long, long way to building some fundamental understanding of what police work actually entails.

    No one is saying that 8 minutes of knee-on-neck is right or that the cops’ actions were in any way righteous. No one is saying that shoving a 75 yr. old idiot to the street and watching him bleed is what ‘policing’ is all about or should be about. No! But what is absolutely clear — by any rational evaluation of the facts before us — the Police, generally and quite consistently do a tremendous job under high-stress/hi-risk conditions.

    Could it be better? Sure, absolutely. Every organization can improve; every process can become more effective.

    But to castigate, humiliate, punish & defund 850,000 for the sins of a handful…. to pretend that criminality is function not of sociopathic greed & hate but of the police themselves and the presence of law …. that is insanity.

    1. Police swear an oath to uphold the laws of whatever government is currently in power.

      Sheriffs swear an oath to the Constitution.

      No cop has any mandate to help anyone. SCOTUS has ruled at least twice on this. Police are here to impose the law by force not to protect anyone or anything.

      The Declaration of Independence clearly enumerates such a government as tyranny and these acts where there are rules for them and rules for everyone else as acts of war.

      You can be for the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution OR for police, but not both.

      Support the Constitution. Support your local sheriff. Defund police and end the property tax that causes us to pay for our own tyranny.

    2. Just re-read your post and I just have to ask…

      You know that professional police are a Progressive invention right?

      1. No, professional police are not a “progressive invention”. They have existed in post-medieval Europe since the 17th century. King Louis XIV established one of the first professional police forces in Paris.

        1. Touche.

          American professional police are a progressive invention. The constitution sets up sheriffs, not police. Proggies in Boston started it by trying to spread out the cost of security of their products to all the residents of the city via a tax…

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.