”Do exactly what you are told and no one gets hurt” is what hostages are told,
not a free people. ~ D.K. Williams
You can like certain things certain people do and abhor others. You can praise people when they do right and demand accountability when they do wrong. It’s called thinking.
I, for instance, applaud police when they properly – key word! – arrest violent criminals and I thank them when they direct traffic at accident scenes and around things like concerts and sporting events.
But I also demand that they be punished accordingly when they commit crimes. Badges, blue uniforms and unlimited tabs at Dunkin’ Donuts must not make them immune from the punishments you or I would receive for the same acts.
Police are merely tasked with certain duties. They are not above the rest of us. And, unless they can provide probable cause of wrongdoing, they are not even authority figures. You don’t have to do whatever they say.
In 2014, I filmed an arrest in southwest Denver. The arrestee was wanted on domestic violence charges and had fled from a nearby apartment building. The arrest itself was uneventful and there was no excessive force.
A few minutes later, a Denver police officer approached me and asked to see my cellphone. As he had no warrant, I politely refused. He did not pursue the matter any further. Thank God it was this officer.
It is always inherently risky to say “no” to the police. As Judge Andrew Napolitano puts it, “It is dangerous to be right when your government is wrong”. Yet it is our duty to do just this if we wish to retain what is left of our rapidly diminishing liberty.
The police are the business end of the government, and hence the most dangerous part. We remember the names of tyrants throughout history – Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, the Kims, etc. Yet it was police – and soldiers – whose names we don’t remember, who did the actual dirty fingernail work of implementing that tyranny.
Enter one-time evangelist and philanthropist – I used to donate to one of his ministries – turned unabashed pimp for all things politically right-wing Franklin Graham. Earlier this week, one of his Facebook posts from 2015 made the rounds on its fourth anniversary. The post was in response to some recent high-profile shootings by police.
In short, do whatever the police tell you to do and nobody gets hurt. Police violence is the fault of its victims’ failure to do exactly as told.
This might sound good to the badge-sniffing, blue supremacist right. Yet its real-world implications ought to be downright scary to anyone with the capacity to think just a few steps forward.
When you give unlimited power to segments of the government you like, just know that there are other people who like other segments of the government and are more than willing to give them unlimited power. You reap what you sow. What goes around comes around and does so good and hard.
Consider three policy proposals from the resurgent radical left.
- They might eventually sit in grand edifices in places like Washington, Denver, Sacramento and Albany and enact mandatory vaccinations into law. However, it will be the police who will actually enforce those laws.
- They might eventually make the Green New Deal the law of the land. However, it will be the police who will go door-to-door enforcing it.
- “Red flag” gun laws, such as Colorado’s proposed House Bill 1171, which empower police to take your guns without due process, are gaining popularity across the land. They will be enforced by – you guessed it! – police.
Will the badge-sniffing, blue supremacist right still absolutely insist that it is our duty to comply with the demands of the police? They’ll sure have a dilemma on their hands.
If a police officer tells you to give him your gun, will you just give him your gun. Or will this finally be your wake-up call?
By the way, complying with the demands of the police is still no guarantee that you won’t be killed. Watch what happened to Daniel Shaver in Mesa, Arizona, in January 2016.
Franklin concludes his post by saying “The Bible says to submit to your leaders and to those in authority ‘because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account’”. (Hebrews 13:17, NIV)
Never mind that the author of Hebrews was speaking of church leadership. The police are not “leaders”, nor do they have any true “authority” unless they have probable cause of wrongdoing. The burden of proof must always be on the accuser, even if the accuser is a police officer.
To repeat the words of Judge Andrew Napolitano, it is dangerous to be right when your government is wrong. It is even more dangerous to look the other way when your government is wrong and expect to avoid the consequences. One day you’ll be sorry.