If police really put American lives ahead of their own, they’d hurt fewer people

Yet cops appear to believe their lives are more important than ours. Police want respect and esteem — and obedience — but they, their fraternal organizations, their unions, their chiefs, their friends and family, and everyone waving a Blue Lives Matter flag, lean on cliches such as “split-second decision” to defend unwarranted force, and stress that officer safety is paramount.

It shouldn’t be. If police have extended legal rights (which they do), and are alway armed (which they are in the United States), then they need to be braver than the rest of us, and they need to prioritize the safety of everyone else before themselves. If they are unable or unwilling to do that, they should find a different career.

Yes, knives can be dangerous. A suspect (or an elderly lady?) can close a distance faster than most people realize. But if your sympathies are still squarely on the Chatsworth cops, and not on the deaf, homeless woodcutter in Seattle, a clearly suicidal man in Missouri, or the family of a mentally distraught man in Pennsylvania, who thought they were getting him an ambulance, but instead called the police that killed him, consider how British police responded to a different incident.