on sale now at amazon

on sale now at amazon
"I don't like this book because it don't got know pictures" Chief Rhorerer

“It’s becoming a disturbingly familiar scene in America - mentally unstable cops”

“It’s becoming a disturbingly familiar scene in America - mentally unstable cops”
“It’s becoming a disturbingly familiar scene in America - mentally unstable cops”

Cops who lie, the erosion of trust, and despair

By RationalThoughtProcess

I’m a middle-aged white guy. I was born lucky (i.e., white male American, with loving, affluent, involved parents) and just kept getting luckier, so I have had very little interaction with the police in my life.

But let me tell you a little story. It will seem incredibly trivial — perhaps even offensively so —compared to the brutality and murder meted out by cops against black folks (and other folks too), but there is a point to it.

Last year, I was pulled over by a police officer.

I was driving my grandmother to a doctor’s appointment. I didn’t know where I was going, and she only intermittently knows where she is :-), so she was giving me directions, turn-by-turn. We came to a 4-way stop. Since I didn’t know whether I was supposed to go straight or turn left or turn right, I came to a complete dead stop and waited for my grandmother to tell me which way to go. As I looked up the road to my left, I noticed a police cruiser parked on the shoulder. Gramma eventually said to take a right, so I did. Moments later I saw flashing lights in my mirror.

I had no idea why I might be getting pulled and I was extremely surprised when the officer told me it was for not stopping at the stop sign.

I said, “I absolutely did stop.”

He said, “Sir, you didn’t even slow down.”

Simply put, that was a bald-faced lie. (And also utterly ridiculous —the cop was claiming that I approached an intersection, going 20 or 30 miles per hour, and executed a 90-degree turnwithout braking, in an SUV.)

I exclaimed, "What?!" and emitted a few demure sounds of disbelief, while my grandmother piped up and said, “That’s not true at all.” The officer made it clear he wasn't in the mood for a debate, so I shut up and gave him my license and paperwork, and he returned to his cruiser.

Turns out we were within sight of Gramma’s doctor’s building, so after a minute or two she started to get out of the car, saying she’d just walk. However, the minor bit of arguing I’d done was apparently enough to spur the cop to call for backup (!) because there were nowthreesquad cars present (in case this highly dangerous situation went south, I guess), so I jokingly told her, I dont want you to do that Gramma, they might taser you. Grammas too old to give a crap, so she got out and walked, and nothing happened, but I’m willing to bet the cops wouldn’t have been so easy going if it hadn’t been an elderly white lady hobbling away.

Anyway, to wrap the story up, I got a ticket and it cost me $265 (including the cost of an online remedial driver’s course to avoid getting points), and that’s the end of it.

But here’s the thing: thatwasntthe end of it, not really, becausethat cop flat out lied, and I will never, ever forget it. It haspermanentlydamaged my trust in the police.

I mean, I already knew that cops often falsify police reports, especially to cover up their own brutality and protect their peers, but that was abstract and those cases are severe and, in a perverse way, understandable, insofar as cops who have done something really wrong have a motive to take extraordinary measures to cover it up.

In a weird way, the fact that this cop’s lying was so trivial, sounnecessary, so unmotivated by anything other than a desire to write a ticket (it was the 30th of the month, maybe its true they have to fill a quota) somehow thats even more damaging to my trust than knowing that cops lie about super-serious matters.

As a result of this incident, I am now inclined to disbelieve any police statement on any matter whatsoever, no matter how trivial or serious. I can’t imagine anything that would ever make me trust a police officer again. Not fully anyway. There will always be doubt and wariness. And there will always be a kernel of anger and resentment.

I’m sure there are millions of people who, if they were to read this diary, would laugh ruefully and say, “Welcome to our world,” or “Welcome to the real world.” I get that. But there are millions more who are just like me — they've neverpersonallyexperienced stark dishonesty by the police, and they dont appreciate how it feels.

I am trying to imagine what it must be like to live in Ferguson, where the police issue an unfathomable number of citations — far more than are issued in other cities, far more than could possibly be justifiable — and a large percentage of them are obviously bullshit, either because the infractions are so trivial that police in a normal city would let them slide, or because there aren’t any actual crimes, it’s just Ferguson cops making shit up, or both. How can there beanytrust between police and citizens in that town? Then layer on top of it the empirically documented racial discrimination. Then layer brutality on top of that. If I lived in Ferguson, and I was black, I would beseething, all the time. God bless the people of Ferguson for having the decency to bear all that, year after year, and god damn the people who practice and promote systemic injustice (including me).

Aren’t there lots of police officers who are decent human beings? Surely. Aren’t there plenty of dedicated detectives going above and beyond to bring justice to victims? There must be; I see them every week on 48 Hours and Dateline. I’m not so jaded that I’m not going to call 911 if the need arises. And chances are, if that happens, I will end up being grateful for the police.

But myimmediatereaction when I hear the police account of an alleged crime is skepticism. I instinctivelydoubt that the police account is true. For me, thats new. For others, its been that way for a long time. For still others, its not that way yet, but it will be, sooner or later.

What kind of society will we have whennobodytrusts the police? Because thats where were headed

“Shoot a Cop” Bumper Sticker Sparks Fear Among Police and Debate Over Free Speech

"Kevin Carroll, president of the Virginia chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police, called the bumper-sticker “very dangerous.”

.....and the cop's aren't dangerous?  

By Eva Decesare on June 16, 2015

Richmond, VA — Virginia police are expressing concern and outrage about a BMW bearing a hand-written bumper sticker that reads “shoot a cop.” The image has been circulating around on social media. Kevin Carroll, president of the Virginia chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police, called the bumper-sticker “very dangerous.”
However offensive some may find the message, legal experts agree that it constitutes “protected speech” under the First Amendment, making it illegal for police to stop, harass, or otherwise retaliate against someone for displaying such a bumper-sticker.
Carroll predicted that officers would take the message in stride and would not infringe on anyone’s free speech rights in response, saying, “You can’t let all these things get to you.” However, given how often police have shown ignorance or disregard for the laws they claim to enforce, retaliation by police would hardly be surprising.
The bumper-sticker is just another illustration of the growing resentment and hostility many feel towards those in law enforcement. But when it comes to explaining that phenomenon, some police and police supporters are eager to blame criminals, protests, bumper-stickers—everything except the police.
For example, Virginia FOP president Kevin Carroll stated, “Officers make mistakes, I understand that, but I did not know that it now has become fashionable to hate the police.” Such a dismissive statement basically amounts to characterizing cold-blooded murder and sadistic brutality committed by police as “making mistakes.” He also stated, in reference to the bumper-sticker, “We already have enough trouble as it is getting good recruits and training people. This just makes it harder.”


New Study: Cops With College Degrees Are Less Likely to Use Force Against Citizens

By Matt Agorist on February 6, 2015

A new study out of Michigan State University proposes an eye-opening correlation between college educated police officers and their actions as cops.
The study suggests that college-educated police experience higher rates of job dissatisfaction. The study also suggests that police officers with college degrees are more likely to have adverse views of their supervisors and don’t necessarily favor community policing.
But perhaps the most compelling facet of this MSU study is the evidence that college-educated officers are less likely to use force on citizens.
The study analyzed data from 2,109 police officers in seven metropolitan police departments. Although none of the departments required a degree, 45 percent of the officers surveyed, possessed one.
Interestingly, the study showed that the type of degree the officer received made no difference in the level of job dissatisfaction.
“Our latest results on police views might lead one to question whether a college education is beneficial for officers,” said William Terrill, professor at MSU’s School of Criminal Justice and co-author of the study. “But our research is a mixed bag, and you have to take into account the behavioral effect as well. If you use less force on individuals, your police department is going to be viewed as more legitimate and trustworthy and you’re not going to have all the protests we’re having across the country.”
Today’s policing, Terrill said, “is much more about social work than it is law enforcement. It’s about resolving low-level disputes, dealing with loiterers and so on.” Officers with experience in psychology, sociology and other college-taught disciplines might be more adept at addressing these issues, according to the study.
This study from MSU tends to corroborate the reasoning behind the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit condoning the ability of police departments to discriminate against smart people.
The main argument cited by the court for the decision to allow police departments the ability to discriminate is that smart people experienced more job dissatisfaction.
However, knowing that educated cops tend to be less violent and to know that departments can legally refuse to hire officers with higher intelligence, one can now have a better understanding of the police state in which we currently find ourselves.
A smart person does not create a domestic standing army and call it freedom.
A smart person does not deliberately tear gas journalists. A smart person does not point a rifle an innocent person and tell them that they are going to kill him. A smart person does not severely beat a person with down syndrome because he sees a bulge in his pants, which is actually a colostomy bag. A smart person does not continuously shoot at an unarmed man who posed no threat and whose arms are in the air.
Another study should be conducted that takes a look at departments who have a majority of college-educated officers and compare the level of force used to another department with a majority of officers who are not college-educated.
Perhaps the level of job satisfaction would increase if the departments were made up of intelligent people who are less likely to use force. Maybe, just maybe, the act of policing a society could be done with acumen and compassion instead of ignorance and brute force. One can certainly dream.


US Court Says it’s Okay for Police Departments to Refuse to Hire Someone who is Too Smart

By Matt Agorist on September 28, 2014

Ever wonder why cops yell “quit resisting” as they beat a person who’s not resisting? Or why they shoot people who pose no threat? Maybe the answer is right in front of us.
The Wonderlic Cognitive Ability Test is a popular group intelligence test used to assess the aptitude of prospective employees for learning and problem-solving in a range of occupations. Throughout both the U.S. and Canada, many police forces require candidates to take this test as one of the qualifications prior to being hired.
The standard range of scores applied for police officers is a score between 20 and 27. According to ABC News, The average score nationally for police officers is 21 to 22, the equivalent of an IQ of 104, or just a little above average. A perfect score on the Wonderlic is a 50.
On March 16, 1996 Robert Jordan from Connecticut, and 500 others underwent a written screening process which included the Wonderlic Test, conducted by the Law Enforcement Council of  Southeastern Connecticut, Inc. (“LEC”), a coalition of fourteen cities and towns, in order to apply for a position as a police officer.
Several months later Jordan learned that the city of New London started interviewing candidates. After not hearing from them, Jordan inquired as to why he was passed over.
Jordan eventually learned from assistant city manager Keith Harrigan that he would not be interviewed because he “didn’t fit the profile.”
Thinking it was obviously age discrimination because he was 46 at the time, Jordan filed an administrative complaint with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities.
The response that he received was completely out of left field. The city responded that it removed Jordan from consideration because he scored a 33 on the Wonderlic Cognitive Ability Test, and that to prevent frequent job turnover caused by hiring overqualified applicants the city only interviewed candidates who scored between 20 and 27.
The city of New London claims that “People within certain ranges achieve a degree of job satisfaction and are likely to be happy and therefore stay on the job.” They apparently believed that Jordan was too smart to be happy being a cop.
This reasoning did not seem logical to Jordon so he filed a civil rights action in the District Court for the District of Connecticut  alleging that the city and Harrigan denied him equal protection in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and Article 4, Section 20, of the Connecticut Constitution.
On August 29, 1999 the court granted defendants’ motion for summary judgment citing “no suspect classification and that defendants had ‘shown . . . a rational basis’ for the policy.”
Jordan, thinking that this must be just a fluke ruling, then appealed and brought his case to the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
In the interim Jordan conducted his own research which showed that high scores do not actually correlate with experiencing more job dissatisfaction. The court ruled that despite the evidence to the contrary of New London’s claim, they are still justified in refusing applicants with high IQs “because it matters not whether the city’s decision was correct so long as it was rational.”
Because all applicants were denied based on high test scores, there was no discrimination taking place.
This decision by the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to condone the ability of police departments to discriminate against smart people is one of the most profoundly ridiculous moves ever made. But it also tends to explain the state of police departments today.
It takes a special kind of person to go to work every day and harass, kidnap, and kill people for victimless crimes. The act of unquestioningly carrying out orders to ruin the lives of good people whose only “crime” was to do with their own body as they wish, would eventually have to raise the eyebrow of a person with a higher level of intelligence…or so we’d like to think.
Knowing that this ability to discriminate against intelligence in police departments exists tends to put ‘Police State USA’ in perspective. In the past decade we’ve seen heavily militarized actions against non-violent protesters. We’ve even seen school districts accepting MRAPs! And we’ve watched from the sidelines as Mayberry transformed to Martial Law.
A smart person does not create a domestic standing army and call it freedom.
A smart person does not deliberately tear gas journalists. A smart person does not point a rifle an an innocent person and tell them that they are going to kill him. A smart person does not severely beat a person with down syndrome because he sees a bulge in his pants, which is actually a colostomy bag. A smart person does not continuously shoot at an unarmed man who posed zero threat and whose arms are in the air.
If more people knew this information you could rest assured that they would try and reform their police departments. No one wants their police officers to be unintelligent, right?
Controversial filmmaker Michael Moore helped to expose what happened to Jordan as well as the ridiculous notion of discriminating based on intelligence levels, on his show “The Awful Truth.” The 8 minute segment, while hilarious, paints an ominous picture of adhering to such tactics.

Why on Earth would anyone ever think that this is a good idea?


Time to rethink the officers’ bill of rights

By Burton Jay Rubin June 12

For some 20 months, the Fairfax County police officer who shot and killed John Geer has been on “paid administrative duty,” despite the $2.95 million settlement the county agreed to pay Geer’s family. The commonwealth’s attorney is also seeking to empanel a grand jury to consider criminal charges.
Officer Adam Torres’s tenure with the Fairfax County police continues, thanks to the Police Officers’ Bill of Rights, which provides job security protections unavailable to other workers. Similar laws are on the books in Maryland and many other places.
Most employees are subject to the employment-at-will legal doctrine, under which they may be fired for any reason or no reason at all, except for limited discriminatory reasons. Under Virginia’s police officers’ bill of rights, an officer cannot be discharged, even if he or she hurt someone, disobeyed orders or broke the law, without being notified in writing of the basis for the dismissal, given an opportunity to respond orally and in writing, with the assistance of a lawyer, and given the right to file a grievance under state or local procedures.
Police officers’ bill of rights laws sprung up in the early 1970s. Before that, police generally were held to a higher standard of conduct than other citizens.
In New York City, for example, police officers were required to cooperate fully with criminal investig-ations to the point of waiving their constitutional privilege against self-incrimination or lose their jobs. That requirement was found unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in the 1968 decision in Gardner v. Broderick. Even though the officer in that case won, police organizations pressed the issue, resulting in what might be regarded as a “second helping” of employment rights, reflected in officers’ bill of rights laws today.
It is sometimes said that the extraordinary job security afforded to police officers is justified by the dangerous nature of their work. But that premise is false. Most police officers never fire their weapons in defense.
Law enforcement is not even among the 10 most dangerous jobs in the United States. Loggers and roofers have the most dangerous jobs, and we don’t provide them with special job security.
The FBI reports that the number of officers killed by criminals is at its lowest in 50 years . Unfortunately, the number of citizens killed by police has increased and now stands at its highest point.
Another argument for special job protection rights for police officers is that officers are the targets for unjustified charges of wrongdoing. That police officers may be falsely accused of misconduct is undoubtedly the case, as it was for a University of Virginia fraternity, Duke University  lacrosse players and child-care workers, yet none of these groups is accorded special legal protections unavailable to the general public.
We are not talking about punishing someone or short-circuiting the legal process to which everyone is entitled. We are talking only about how long a community must keep a police officer on the job and pay him, after that community has lost confidence in him and he has lost his ability to serve in the position for which he was hired.
No one has the right to be employed as a police officer. It is a privilege conferred by the community upon those who meet the requirements and who are worthy of the public’s confidence and trust. A finding of criminal liability is far too low a standard by which to decide if someone should remain a police officer. When an officer has lost his community’s confidence and trust, the community should be able to ask that individual to find employment elsewhere.
We need to rethink our police officers’ bill of rights laws.
The writer is a lawyer and civic activist in Northern Virginia.