Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Why Police Do Nothing While Kids Are Killed

Posted by M. C. on June 24, 2022

In other words, the police had to protect themselves first, because if the police are hurt, then the suspect can do even more damage. There is a certain reasonable logic here, of course, but it’s in conflict with post-Columbine training. Moreover, police know they will not be held to any contractual standard that mandates intervention. They can decide for themselves whether to intervene, and will face no consequences other than some short-term political blowback. Virtually no one in the Uvalde debacle has any reason to fear losing his generous taxpayer-funded pension.

Ryan McMaken

Here is an often-used tactic employed to defend government police organizations from criticism. Whenever critics point out police incompetence or abuse, defenders counter with “The next time you need help, call a crackhead!” This same phrase was used by Louisiana senator John Kennedy when singing the praises of uniformed government bureaucrats in 2021. The phrase often produces many smug nods from the “Back the Blue” crowd, and one can buy T-shirts with this progovernment slogan as well.

The reality however, is something quite different. Experience continues to teach us again and again, that when one encounters violent felons—as did the children in Uvalde, Texas—calling a crackhead may not produce results much worse than calling the police. A crackhead is probably going to run the other direction when faced with a gun-toting maniac. As we learned at Uvalde, many police officers will do exactly the same. 

The “call a crackhead” propaganda is also especially insidious because it is designed to back the idea that “taxes are the price we pay for civilization” and the myth of the “social contract.” In this supposed quid pro quo, the taxpayers pay their taxes and then the government provides “public safety.” That, at least, is the myth the regime repeats over and over. 

This myth is being exposed for what it is in real time in the Uvalde investigation right now. Each new revelation shows just how uninterested law enforcement officers can be in providing any of that “protection” that they insist the taxpayers pay so much to fund. Rather, Uvalde has shown that the primary interest of law enforcement was officer safety, not public safety. So much for that “social contract” we keep hearing about. 

Ultimately, unlike a private sector service, police do not operate under any contractual obligations to provide services in any particular way. Thus, they can decide to do nothing and face no real consequences. 

New Revelations Show Police Simply Chose to Do Nothing

In the Texas Senate this week, senators and the public are starting to see what passes for police work in Texas. 

Although police spokesmen repeatedly claimed police could not engage the shooter because of a locked door, it turns out that was a lie. Reuters reported yesterday: 

The classroom door in the Uvalde elementary school where 19 children and two teachers were killed in May was not locked even as police waited for a key, Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steven McCraw said on Tuesday.

There was no evidence any law enforcement officer ever tried the classroom door to see if it was locked, McCraw said at a Texas Senate hearing into the shooting.

“I don’t believe based on the information we have right now that door was ever secured,” McCraw said. “He (the shooter) didn’t have a key … and he couldn’t lock it from the inside.”

So, why did police wait outside so long? They claimed it was because they didn’t have the equipment they needed. That also turned out to be a lie. According to McGraw: “Three minutes after the subject entered the building, there was a sufficient number of armed personnel to isolate, distract, and neutralize the subject…. the on-scene commander decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children.”

Expect a Cover-Up 

Naturally, police personnel and their allies in local government have acted to conceal information on the police response from the public. The city’s district attorney has intervened to prevent the release of “any records.” Moreover, the Texas Department of Public Safety is pressuring the state’s attorney general to ensure that body camera footage from the incident remains hidden—presumably forever because police rather conveniently claim the footage exposes police tactics to potential future shooters. 

No Accountability 

Unfortunately, legal recourse for police incompetence and inaction is virtually nonexistent in the US,

See the rest here

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