Fark tha police-not

Because of INS many naturally assume that I am a liberal about everything, and as a result my e-mailbox gets filled with lots of stuff that makes me roll my eyes. The left has just as many blithering idiots as the right, with the only possible difference being that the vast majority of lefties know how to spell on forums and there’s some ethnic diversity. I’ve written here previously about how my stance on fertility treatments-that they’re bullshit-has cost me some relationships. Now I must write about another stance I have that gets me regular WTF WHHHHYYYYYYYY moments:

I do not believe police are “pigs.”

I have several friends who seem to scour the net in search of “police abuse poor innocent citizen” stories and post them on their Facebooks or Twitters or blogs with outrage in full effect. The latest story that’s been clogging up my inbox is that of 87-year-old Lona Varner, who along with her grandson is currently suing the El Reno, Oklahoma police department because last December she was Tasered by them. Of course everyone’s harping on the age thing and basically claiming that she was Tasered for no good reason other than maybe the cops were bored and needed some excitement. And, oh, yeah, cops are pigs.

Whenever anyone comes out with the “cops are pigs” thing my first question to them is always “do you know any cops?” The common reply is “I don’t want to know any pigs,” but with gentle digging the truth generally comes out. One friend had an abusive stepfather … who just happened to be a cop. Another’s boyfriend bought stolen merchandise (although he initially proclaimed innocence it turned out that he was well aware what he bought was stolen “but the deal was so good”) and brought the cops to their doorstep in the middle of the night. Yet another had a bad breakup with a guy who just happened to be a cop. Because of the closeness of the situations it was much easier for them to paint all police officers with the same brush rather than acknowledging the truth-that, much like any profession populated by humans, there are assholes mixed in with the general just-trying-to-do-my-job population.

My brother-in-law was a New Jersey state trooper, forced into early retirement due to injury. An online friend is a relatively new officer in a smaller British city. I have read and heard their stories, often told with a semi-lighthearted laugh but weighted with seriousness. A story from my English friend:

Coming soon to youtube near you…me punching someone and then throttling them. Yes, you read that right. We were doing the city centre at work the other night and this guy’s friend was being arrested. Guy kept intervening. Guy was 6 foot 4, I am decidedly smaller than him. He wouldn’t get back so I swatted his face twice which had absolutely no effect whatsoever on him because he’s massive and I’m not. I then throttled him until he started complying. I then had him on the floor and realised I was being filmed by several people on their phones.

Oh NO.

It just looked awful from the outside. I saw this guy start to move because I’m aware of that kind of thing and warning signs. I swatted him because he was fucking massive and trying to put him in a wristlock would be impossible. I then throttled him because with his size, there was fuck all else I could do. Trouble is I bet what you see on footage is me suddenly going for him.

Legally I’m completely justified but it could all turn into a load of shit. Ugh. Not seriously worried because I have the I AM A TINY WOMAN AND HE IS A BIG MAN justification, we tend to get it a lot easier when it comes to complaints because of it. When men use force on a woman they have to be so, so careful. I once dealt with an incredibly violent and insane woman who was so violent she was handcuffed to the rear, doubled over and carried into the cells. The blokes that were with her were having to constantly soothingly say things like “Calm down now babe, we’ll have to use force if you don’t” etc etc because it’s all on camera in the cells and you have to be MEGA careful.

I also dealt with a stabbing where someone had been stabbed in the neck. I searched the girlfriend of the offender who had never been arrested before and was in floods of tears. She seemed completely genuine and was crying and saying she’d only been with the offender for two months, she was horrified, didn’t think he was like this etc. I found nothing on her and she was taken to the cells where she was searched again more thoroughly and with a metal detector.

Two hours later she rings for someone to come to the cells. She reaches inside herself and pulls out a bloodstained flick knife saying that he told her to hide it. Ewwwwwwwwwww.

Cops deal with the dregs of humanity every day. It never escapes me that the ones who scream COPS ARE PIGS the loudest are those who are safe in their middle class cocoons, not knowing life at the bottom, not knowing the crazy and the criminal. Cops are taught to always think of the Worst Case Scenario because more often than not it plays itself out. Those who are guilty of crimes will offer anything and anyone up as sacrifice if they think it’ll save their asses. My BIL told me about a guy who’d been under surveillance for a few months for dealing cocaine. He got pulled over on the New Jersey Turnpike, being suspected of hauling a few kilos. In his car was his three-year-old daughter, and he immediately grabbed her and held her out to the cops. “I got my baby, wouldn’t do nuthin’ to my baby!” he bleated. When asked what was in the trunk, though, the baby spoke up. “Mommy put presents in there!” she announced. The “presents” consisted of a couple dozen kilos of coke. And the cops had to take the little girl away because her loving father was trying to punch her quiet.

Despite how they’re portrayed in movies and TV shows, cops are not habitual gun or Taser pullers. If a weapon is drawn for any reason an officer can look forward to many hours of interviews and paperwork, so it’s to their advantage that everything remains in its holster. There are far more that have never drawn any weapons in the line of duty than those who have. But one thing is guaranteed-if you’re dumb enough to draw a weapon on a cop, expect the favor to be returned.

And Lona Varner, 86 years old or not, was dumb enough. Her co-plaintiff grandson was the one to call the police, claiming that she was threatening suicide. Those who are screaming about the “old, disabled, bedridden, hooked up to oxygen woman” don’t seem to be questioning why a 31-year-old assumedly ablebodied man felt that police were necessary to calm his sick old granny down. When the police got there, she was brandishing a knife. “I want to die,” she said. “I did not call you, so get the fuck out of my house. If you try and get the knife, I will stab you and kill you. I killed four Japs in World War II and I would not bat an eye killing you.”

For those who are all OMFG SHE WAS AN OLD LADY I present to you one James von Brunn. Age doesn’t dull stupidity.

And I’m not saying I haven’t had a bad run-in with the police. About eight years ago I was heinously late to work and realized I took a wrong exit. I made an illegal U-turn, not realizing a Virginia state trooper was right there. He pulled me over and proceeded to be a complete dick, acting like I’d just mowed down a nursery school full of toddlers, and to top it off he didn’t return my driver’s license and basically called me a lying bitch when I mentioned it. Once I got to work I immediately called VSP headquarters to place a complaint. I wasn’t a vigilante about it, just making my voice heard and saying “um, I pay taxes and therefore your salary.” Yes, I was mad, but at the same time I thought “maybe I was at the end of a long day, maybe he just wanted to go home.” (PS-the VSP paid to have my license replaced)