I’m a police officer in South Texas. Thought I’d share some thoughts.. Thank you for what you do!
CNN: “LAPD shoots man on the ground”, “LAPD kills homeless man”. Huffington Post: “LAPD ‘CAUGHT’ on tape shooting homeless man to death”. LA Times: “LAPD fatally shoots homeless man”. HLN: “Video shows LA cops shooting homeless man”. Sounds like LAPD had a bad day. Sounds like they did some bad stuff. Looks like they need to string up some officers for excessive force.
Headlines look like these deranged maniac cops killed a helpless man on the streets who is just down on his luck. “There were 5 cops and one guy.. And they had to SHOOT HIM?!” Obviously they just saw a homeless guy on the ground and decided to open fire. Oh.. And then there’s those looney tunes over at FoxNews. Bunch of slanted, right wing, extremist racists, who only care about their selfish agenda. Their headline? “LAPD officers shoot homeless man in struggle over officer’s gun, officials say”. Wait..what? So the LAPD didn’t just kill that guy? That’s not sensational. That’s not really headline-y. That doesn’t bring the shock and awe. Hell, that doesn’t even make the cops look bad.
Satire aside, that poor man (and I mean poor in a figurative sense, not in a monetary way) lost his life. That poor man will never take another breath. He’ll never see another sunrise. He doesn’t get the chance to talk to Jesus and square things up before his time is up. His life is over. Done. In a senseless way, and without reason. It didn’t have to go down that way, he didn’t have to be shot, and he didn’t have to die. Those LAPD officers may get indicted, and if it wasn’t justified, I hope they do.
But if you can stomach the 3 minutes or so.. Go watch that video. Keep in mind they went to a reported robbery call (the news calls it SkidRow.. But that doesn’t matter- violence can, and does happen everywhere you go). And listen to the taser. And then listen to someone yell something to the affect of “he’s got my gun”, or “I lost my gun”. Then think about going to a call.. Where someone asked for you to be there. And then during the struggle you fear losing your weapon and being shot. Or worse, staying alive while your partner gets shot. Or, God forbid, errant rounds go into that crowd and wound or kill one of those innocent bystanders who are just enjoying the show. Cops are aholes a lot of times. And I’m sure there are some excessive force usin’, civil rights violatin’, crooked/sideways/upside down ones out there hellbent on destruction, greed, power, and violence. But.. Some aren’t. Cop or not, I ask you (rhetorically of course) what would you do?