The actor Orlando Jones did this. Which was interesting. If you don’t want to follow the link, as part of his video for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge he poured a bucket full of
This armored plate carrier can protect the wearer from multiple gun shots, and similar equipment has become standard among US specialized police units.
spent brass over his head and spoke about human rights in the context of American policing. Now, the facebook friend of mine who nominated me for this challenge, which really isn’t a challenge at all but was Mr. Jones’ own statement, was just being cheeky and she probably wanted to see if I would actually pour a bucket of spent brass over my head on youtube. I could, except that any brass I have is sorted, and some of it’s clean and I don’t want to take the time to either sort it or clean it again. And so, here we are.
That said, I have given the state of American policing a great deal of thought because of both familial and professional ties to the law enforcement community, but mainly because I am a member of the civilian community and a citizen of my country.
I will never believe, as a white man who grew up in one of the most segregated parts of the country that there is no racism in American policing. I will never believe as a human being that the War on Drugs has made us safer. I will never believe as a student of history that the War on Terror does not violate our constitutional rights. I will never believe that the majority of our prison population deserves it. I will never believe that the privatization of our prisons serves the greater good, or that taking an oath and wearing a badge makes a person a hero just because.
I do believe that those accused of crimes are entitled to a fair trial. I believe that a man without a weapon should probably never be shot. I believe that police officers should hold themselves to a higher fucking standard than our nature. I believe that a knife is at least as dangerous as a gun at less than 21 yards. I believe tear gas should never be fired, ever, at anyone. I believe that a semi-automatic rifle and quality plates are pieces of equipment all law enforcement officers should have at their disposal. I believe that our police forces could defend the people from tyranny, terrorists, and maniacs. I believe that our police forces can commit crimes, and terrorize the people as readily as terrorists or maniacs. I believe that most cops are good people trying to do the right thing, but I remember they chose their profession. No one is forcing them to do that job if they feel unsafe, or under equipped.
But I certainly believe that individual officers are not the cause of America’s militarized police state. Our laws are the problem.
Instead of asking our police officers to fight made up wars against terror and drugs, their primary fight should always be a fight against injustice. For my part, it isn’t the police that I don’t support, it’s the laws and the system that they enforce that I have a problem with, and changing that system has a lot to do with the officers themselves supporting that change.