When Barney Kills
Cops’ murderous brutality is so evident that even the corporate media can ignore it no longer: Pravda-sorry, USSAToday announces, “The number of felony suspects fatally shot by police last year — 461— was the most in two decades, according to a new FBI report.” (Thanks to Mark Luedtke for the link.)
This being USSAToday, the rest of the article tries to minimizes this atrocity because there’s no uniform, so to speak, method of collecting data on how many taxpayers the police annually slaughter; ergo, how can we know exactly how many notches cops are carving on their holsters? Yeah, we all need exact numbers before calling those “fatal shootings” “murder”: “Criminal justice analysts said the inherent limitations of the database — the killings are self-reported by law enforcement, and not all police agencies participate in the annual counts — continue to frustrate efforts to identify the universe of lethal force incidents involving police.” [Emphasis added.] Imagine: when Barney Fife breaks into the wrong home during a SWAT spree, he gets to decide whether he’ll divulge how many innocents he iced or keep that little secret all to himself.
Meanwhile, I’ve previously inveighed against the circular logic and sheer absurdity with which Our Rulers imbue the phrases, “felons” and “justifiable homicide”:
…cops kill many times [more] civilians each year [than civilians kill cops]. And “justifiably,” too: though it’s “murder” when a citizen kills a cop, it’s “justifiable homicide” when they kill us. A report from the US Department of Justice contains this stunner: “the use of deadly force against a police officer is almost never justified, while the use of deadly force by police often is… [K]illings by police are referred to as ‘justifiable homicides,’ and the persons that police kill are referred to as ‘felons.’” What handy logic! Cops kill felons who are felons because cops killed them. “Police justifiably kill on average nearly 400 felons each year.”
All USSAToday’s hand-wringing over lax “self-reporting” aside, the real remedy for the escalating rate of official murder is to abolish police departments. Free people — or at least formerly free people — must disabuse themselves of the notion that cops can and should protect us: self-defense is our own responsibility. Fortunately, that duty is relatively easy in an armed society. But so long as police stalk among us, the anti-Second Amendment crowd will continue to ding away at that inalienable right. After all, why do we need guns when Barney’s on the beat?