Today we have another sad example of why you should probably encourage your kids not to go into law enforcement as a profession. A cop in Chicago is under investigation after he was filmed telling some aggressive black youths that Michael Brown “deserved what he got” when he was shot by Officer Darren Wilson. (From Chicago’s local CBS outlet)
The Chicago Police Department has launched an investigation of a white police officer who was caught on video telling two black males “Mike Brown deserved it.”
Police spokesman Anthony Gugliemi said, after learning about the video, the department has opened an internal affairs investigation of the officer who made the statement about Michael Brown, the unarmed young black man who was shot and killed by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, last year.
In the 41-second video posted on YouTube, two white officers appear to be talking to two young African American men about allegations of racial profiling.
Before going any further, there’s video of the incident available so you can make up your own minds. It’s taken by one of the youths who are confronting the officers and telling them how they don’t trust them. (Language warning)
The video picks up well after the encounter started but there’s no question about how the conversation was unfolding. The young black men were accusing the cops of “pulling over black people” all the time. The cop’s response was definitely peppered with a few more expletives than you might want to see from law enforcement if they’re trying to keep a situation from escalating, but their frustration is both evident and understandable. Telling them that he works in an area with only black people living there leads to him pulling over black people doesn’t seem to register with the complainant. At that point the young men go on a tirade about how they don’t trust the cops and they don’t know what they might do, leading to the reference to Michael Brown.
Again, the cop could have used a bit less spicy language, but what he said was obviously true. Brown attacked a police officer on his way back from a robbery and things went downhill from there. But it’s rather telling that the young black men confronting the officer are still holding up Brown as a talisman of why cops are bad. Also, if you watch the video, you’ll hear the one line left out of the newspaper coverage, shouted toward the cop as the youths leave the area.
Mike Brown shoulda shot his ass in his face. Da f*** you talkin’ about.
Leaving aside the anatomical impossibility of the suggestion for a moment, it’s a reminder of how the cops are facing a new environment on the streets. There are too many communities where entire neighborhoods seem to be on the verge of war with the police and are only waiting for the right spark to start the fire. A different Chicago cop weighed in on that.
Chicago Police officers told CBS 2 off camera the mounting criticism has emboldened criminal suspects.
“Everybody wants a confrontation,” a veteran black officer told us. “It’s almost a game to challenge police to see how far you can go. If it goes too far, it’s like the ghetto lottery – ‘I’m going to sue.’”
Another officer said some cops are now less aggressive in fighting crime.
“You don’t respond sometimes because you may get hurt or accused of doing something you never did,” an officer said.
We keep hearing about how the path to fewer violent interactions with the police relies on better law enforcement “relationships” with the community. But how is that ever going to happen if the “community” is coming to the table with blood in their eyes? Good luck with that. In the meantime, rather than asking why the citizens are walking around wishing that Michael Brown had shot Darren Wilson, it’s the cops being investigated.
As I said at the top, as much as I regret coming to this conclusion, it’s probably not worth it for young people to go into law enforcement today. (At least outside of rural or suburban areas.) The rewards no longer outweigh the incredible risks.