“Some of those that work forces:” Police don’t deserve respect yet

What media depicts police as the “good guys”? Why?
How did we get to the point where the default “centrist” position is that police are good?

Looking back, every history class I’ve ever taken has made it clear that the police do not do the right thing for “common” people. Ever.

Growing up on stories like Robin Hood, Tom Sawyer, Treasure Island, Bionicle (Vahki are police), Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, and others, the characters that represent the state-enforced troops are NEVER the good guys. There’s a reason for this.

Police aren’t the “good guys.” They don’t provide an integral service to society. The perception that they prevent murders and “solve” crimes is a grey area. Rarely does the front-line beat cop “solve” anything.

Specialized detectives and investigators solve crimes.
Body armour and heavy weapons don’t.

Violence perpetuates violence. This is always true.

In grade school, we are consecutively taught that “violence is not the answer” and that “police should be respected”
It is clearer than ever (to white people who didn’t know before) that policing is inherently violent.

Why then, do we teach children to respect the police? It doesn’t benefit the individual unless that person is above a certain level of privilege.

It’s a joke, but this Family Guy meme illustrates the issue really clearly:

Family Guy (Global) S11:Ep15 – Peter is profiled by a police officer.

Often we hear from older folks, or people eulogizing their parents who talk about how the older generation didn’t trust the police. This feels like common knowledge to me.
The enforced ideology that we should “respect police” is new.

Police are an oppressive, pseudo-military force, no matter where you live.
So when there is a form of media that enforces the “respect” curriculum enacted sometime between 1970 and 1990, it is propaganda. (Copaganda).

We need to reform and defund the systems that currently are policing us because they don’t work.
Police are systemically racist and classist.
Their investigators pursue street-level drugs rather than corporate fraud. They are given powers to apprehend civilians, but not to go after high-level tax evaders.

My conversation with my MPP’s office yesterday re-emphasized this reality for me.
I’ve never heard it so clearly from the horse’s mouth before.
I was told that because I lived in Halton I didn’t have to worry about the new carding powers afforded to the police from the province.

That Halton is one of the wealthiest regions in Ontario made this statement a damning one to my ears.
I was obviously given this info as a way to waylay my anger at the new powers Doug was giving police.

This is not okay.

We’ve watched Minneapolis be occupied by a pseudo-military force, we saw the RCMP NOT protect indigenous people in Nova Scotia in November. We saw the RCMP persecute pipeline activists in 2019.

Yesterday, the OPP made it clear they WOULD be pulling over people for violating lockdown.

Stop trusting the police. Start advocating to defund them.
They are clearly not providing an equitable service to the public.

If you’re a white person who isn’t worried about police arresting you, your voice matters more than ever.
We need to speak up. If something affects someone else, but not you, that’s the inequality the international conversation has been about.

Did you post a black square and add #BlackLivesMatter to your bio, but do nothing else?
Now is the time to do more.

Email and call your representatives and tell them you want your tax dollars to stop going to the police.

Our entertainment media is some of the first media to be almost unanimously pro-cop.

That just ain’t it.

We can do better.
We need to unlearn the bias we were taught, there are not that many of us yet. We can do it.
We can forge a better society.
But more people need to believe it’s possible.

No one deserves to be profiled, or carded, or shot, or judged by an arbitrary lawman.

Last summer @IwriteOK and @prophiphop recorded a podcast detailing the history of policing in America (the history in Canada is very similar and this is still relevant).
If you’re looking for talking points, I’d suggest starting here.

(to white people)
Unlearn the pro-cop bias you were taught in school.
Focus on the empathy for your neighbours that comes naturally.
Try to be actively anti-racist.

Look at what police have done throughout history, then ask yourself if anything has changed.

Be Robin Hood, not Sherriff of Nottingham.
Be Princess Leia, not a Stormtrooper fanboy.
Be Vakama, not Ahkmou.
Be Tom Sawyer, not the slave catchers.
Be a Ranger of Gondor, don’t be an Orc.

This isn’t hard, you already know what to do.

Don’t support racist institutions (police).
Fight apathy, Embrace change.

Written by
Jack Fisher

Jack Fisher is an independent journalist. He holds a BAH from the University of Guelph, and a post-graduate certificate from Sheridan College in journalism.
@Jack_Fisher_4 on Twitter and Instagram

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Written by Jack Fisher