Perhaps the most serious thing a government can do to use force to impose its will upon ordinary citizens. Typically, "its will" is defined as the enforcement of democratically enacted and duly codified laws, but all laws are subject to interpretation and legal challenge and given the staggering number of laws in this country, you are likely – without realizing it – to be doing any number of illegal things on any given day.

Any interaction between a law enforcement officer and a normal citizen is an uneven one. Law enforcement officers are authorized to use force, they are schooled in the law and are charged with finding those who break it. Given the staggering amount of power they wield, it’s imperative that our citizenry act as a check to this power. The ubiquity of video recording devices – smart phones – serves this end and I would encourage everyone to record their interactions with law enforcement, no matter how benign they might seem.
Why do I make this suggestion? Because of incidents like this:
A Tallahassee cop was caught on cell phone video tasering a 62-year-old woman in the back as she walked away from him – exactly what he had ordered her to do – causing her to fall face first onto the street as several shocked witnessed looked on.

The tasering occurs at roughly 2:30 in the video.

This must have occurred after a bank robbery, or an armed assault, or a high speed chase, right? Wrong.
Several people were walking in the street but moved out of the way when another officer drove past them. They walked back into the street behind the officer, who then pulled over and approached them. Police reports say the people were blocking traffic.

The officer, according to court documents, got out of his car and approached Quontarrious Jones, 23, and ordered him to stop walking multiple times. Jones was arrested on a charge of resisting without violence.

Just shy of the 5 minute mark, the gentleman recording this video utters the phrase I’ve used as the title of this post: "And they wonder why they’re hated." Indeed.

In another incident, officers in Indiana smashed the passenger side window of a vehicle then tased a man who was reluctant to exit the vehicle because he feared for his safety. The Hammond Police Department, instead of apologizing to the couple – or the seven year old girl in the backseat at the time – said the following:
In a statement, Hammond police told the news site: "The Hammond police officers were at all times acting in the interest of officer safety and inaccordance with Indiana law."

Seems to me like the only people in danger in that video are the ones sitting in the car. Were these people suspected of drug smuggling? Kidnapping? Arson? No, the driver was pulled over for not wearing her seatbelt as she was on the way to the hospital to visit her dying mother for perhaps the last time.

Even though it might sound harsh and impolitic, here is the bottom line: if you don’t want to get shot, maced, pepper-sprayed, struck with a baton or thrown to the ground, just do what I tell you. Don’t argue with me, don’t call me names, don’t tell me that I can’t stop you, don’t say I’m a racist pig, don’t threaten that you’ll sue me and take away my badge. Don’t scream at me that you pay my salary,and don’t even think of aggressively walking towards me.

In the case of the 62-year-old woman above, add simply walking away from an officer to that list. (Save for this paragraph, there is a lot to agree with in this article.)

Incidents like these – and consider the number which must occur without someone nearby turning on a video-recording device – help me understand the anger and frustration on display in Ferguson, or the terror experienced by an actress in Los Angeles. Our government is at times terrorizing the very people it has pledged to protect and serve.
Which can serve as a useful metaphor for the left, whose policies often do more harm than good. The right is missing a golden opportunity to appeal to voters like these who are already skeptical of a government capable of occasional tyranny.
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