reply to post by 5ofineed5aladder
From the perspective of someone who has been in near-riot situations, they can get ugly really fast. That tactic, is taught to stop surges before they
start. It did appear to me to be a female cop. This was a post basketball street celebration, not a protest. The girl who was first in line surging
toward the back of the police line, just happened to be first. The cop shoved her back and down, and did not strike her. Notice though, that it
worked. Everyone in that area immediately stopped. And the girl herself, appeared to be alright, as evidenced by the fact that she got up and walked
away. It was a two handed shove across the shoulders...and it was just one, then the officer retreated back to a defensive stationary position.
In my town, there were similar "celebrations", with tens of thousands of students and others, drinking in the street, setting couches on fire, and
pelting people with bottles. They made 28 arrests....after a WIN. Last year, it was even uglier, with police from eight surrounding jurisdictions
called in as well. I've been in these situations a few times, as a firefighter EMT. No one who has not been, really has any idea how quickly a mob
can erupt. So while it may look bad, the fact is that that is what they are trained to do, because it is the most effective and does the least amount
of harm to anyone, in general. The visual shock of seeing someone go flying, is what stops the other dozen or two or hundred from keeping charging.
People can and do die from these things. The goal is to prevent that.
Watch it again. Notice that somewhere.....presumably where the people were surging toward...the larger crowd erupts. People automatically move that
direction, usually just out of curiosity, to see what is happening. Except that in a large crowd situation, hundreds or thousands of people
converging, will cause injuries. People will get trampled. So the very first person that reaches the point where physical contact is possible, gets
shoved back...hard. The others have to see that, or it won't work. They are moving to begin with, on instinct. And the only thing that will
psychologically break that, is another instinctual reaction, which the cop triggered, by shoving her hard enough to be physically knocked down. Just
trying to stop her would not have had any effect on the remaining people in the area. They would have kept pressing and quickly the mere weight of the
crowd would have overwhelmed her.
I'm as against cop violence as anyone on this site. I think it is horrific, and I plaster my facebook wall with examples that I think are real and
unwarranted. But, this one does not rise to that. This was effective crowd control, in an environment where people could be easily hurt or even killed
if it is allowed to escalate. Again, it wasn't some protest for or against any wrong. It was a drunken sports street party. No one had to be there.
And no one was overcome by some emotional cause to right a wrong. It was basketball. My own daughter called me from the one last year, and said it was
getting rowdy and she couldn't find some of her friends, and she wanted to know what to do. I told her and the friend she was still with, to leave
immediately. She was very glad she did.
I think we dilute our cause against real cop abuse, when we take just anything that happens to be caught on video, as evidence of brutality. But, cops
who are afraid to act immediately and decisively, do no one any good. It's a fine line sometimes. I know at least a dozen cops casually, and a few
personally. I run into them on emergency scenes every day I work. By far, most of them are good and would not harm anyone unnecessarily. But, they are
routinely put in situations, at least several times a day, where failing to act would be a mistake, and dangerous for others. Controlling a scene is a
psychological thing....and a balance. But, it cannot be done by anyone who doesn't demonstrate that they are willing to act immediately. If I'm at
the scene of a shooting, I don't want cops crouching behind their cars. I want them fanning out and securing the scene and capturing anyone who is a
bad guy. And that can't be done timidly. It has to be done quickly, affirmatively, and effectively. Often the decision whether to proceed further is
based on a one or two second evaluation of the person they have to pass, to press forward, as to whether the one being passed is actually a threat or
just a bystander. I guess all this to say.....You can't have toothless watchdogs. And the things that actually work in high tension situations, are
not always the things that look best on video...especially to people who have never actually been there. It it really ever happens that TSHTF, cops
are going to be important to everyone innocent. If you want them to protect us then, then we owe an obligation not to vilify them the rest of the
time, if it is unwarranted.
Please do me a favor. After having read this, no matter if you think I am right or wrong, go back and watch it again, with the things I just said in
mind. And think about the greater implications, rather than just the immediate scene in front of you. Thanks. I appreciate it.