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Another Police State Killing


by Ted Lang

Isn’t it the oddest of coincidences that in an American city where two historic events preceded the creation of a government founded upon the principle of protecting individual freedom, that those events have now been so completely countered by another two occurrences in that same city showing the complete reversal of a government of, by and for the people? Of course, we are speaking of the Boston Massacre and The Boston Tea Party versus the recent penning of peaceful demonstrators behind chain link fences and razor wire at the Democratic Party National Convention by Boston Police. And now also, the Boston Police are responsible for the unnecessary slaughter of an unarmed college student after the Red Sox’s American League pennant victory riots.

To be sure, a rowdy drunken celebration got ugly – that cannot be denied. After celebrating in local bars and pubs, some wild and drunken young “hooligans” began causing property damage and setting cars on fire. It is of course the duty of the police to protect life and property – why weren’t the “hooligans” simply arrested? And if a riot was shaping up, then why weren’t “riot police” called in? Is there even such a thing anymore, or is every police officer that is protected by a helmet with plastic visor, a bulletproof vest, a semi-automatic military pistol, and a fully automatic assault rifle [machine-gun] now considered a riot policeman?

No wonder leftists deliberately try to confuse the public with the term “assault rifle;” they are trying to convince Americans ignorant of the differences between civilian firearms of a sporting or defensive nature that these guns are military “assault weapons,” thereby justifying a ban. But how is it that the cop on the beat now requires them?

Leftists have always touted the blessings of an all powerful, strongly centralized national government. And while so desirous of Big Brother government, they have always pointed out that such a powerful central government would never get out of control and turn on the people. Nazi and communist terror “will never happen here,” they say.

Yet, how do Michael Moore and Barbra Streisand like big centralized government now that its very efficient consolidation has morphed into the “dictatorship” of President George Bush? “Can’t happen here?” – tell that to the families of the dead and maimed military who were sacrificed by Bush to fight and die for Israel. Tell that to the families of Amadou Diallo, Abner Louima, Alberta Spruill, the Mid West family and children whose dog was shot dead in front of their eyes by police while illegally stopped. Tell that now to the parents and family of Victoria Snelgrove.

Obviously, Moore and Streisand are convinced that our big centralized machine of government is now being led by “the wrong man.” Precisely so, but that’s why big, centralized government was always to be avoided! That’s why the Founders designed “checks and balances” and provided for a “separation of powers.” And that’s why we have a Second Amendment!

But how can a strong centralized government of one man, or a strong centralized government run by secret, unelected officials hiding behind one man, dominate the whole nation and all its separate state, county, city and town governments? Let’s take a look at that as regards one dimension of government power: “law” enforcement.

As a prelude to our inquiry, we must first consider federal blackmail. A more acceptable term is the concept of “pork barreling,” or simply “pork.” It is in effect, federal blackmail of lesser American government entities. If one congressperson or Senator wants federal legislation and/or funding favorable to his constituency, he will ask other legislators to support his bill, and he/she in turn will vote for the desired legislative advantages desired by the others.

Additionally, if the president desires a legislative venture to be applied to a state or states, he will offer “federal money” to assist the state if the latter financially and legally supports the federally desired legislation. Such fiscal favoritism can be originated directly from the White House: states that support a federal initiative locally receive “federal money” that was originally paid out in the form of income taxes by the state’s citizens. States are “free” to either comply, or not to comply. Those that cooperate receive “federal money;” those that do not receive nothing, thereby, in effect, subsidizing the federal program for the benefit of other states.

The federal government may offer military surplus equipment to “qualifying” state and local police departments in the form of helmets, bullet-proof vests, machine-guns, sniper rifles, grenade launchers and non-lethal pressurized or powder-fired projectile weapons such as the one used to kill 21-year-old Emerson College student Victoria Snelgrove. One police department in Texas received an armored personnel carrier from the feds! It is in this way, that the feds are consolidating police across the nation, making them dependent upon federal giveaways in return for some sort of compliance, which in all likelihood aligns in some way with the federal government’s war on terror, war on drugs, and now the war on US via the PATRIOT Act.

Along with the intended consequence of expanded federal control of the nation’s state and local independent police forces, is the unintended growing “us-versus-them” mentality on the part of an increasing number of state and local police. There may be amongst them a remnant of morality that somewhat holds in check the majority of police activities, but the federalization now well underway because of wars on terror and drugs, and the unending supply of extremely deadly military equipment, is turning police against the very civilians they are supposed to protect and serve.

Militarization always establishes the mindset in the soldier of “kill or be killed.” Hence, resorting to a kill-or-be-killed credo in combat is both totally acceptable and most assuredly desired. And this is why war and military force should always be resorted to as an absolute last choice, and only in a mode of self-defense. Moral restraint has no place on the battlefield when you are trying to stay alive, do your dirty job, and then return home again safe. Those with the strongest constitutions will eventually overcome the nightmares.

Another term for law enforcement personnel that was popular in the past was “peace officer.” How can the credo of a soldier in combat be compared to that of a similarly heavily armed peace officer? The Bush administration has involved US in an unnecessary, unjust, and illegal war in Iraq – our nation wasn’t threatened by either the government or the people of Iraq. Yet, our troops must be committed to a kill-or-be-killed mental posture thanks to the astonishing stupidity and immorality of Bush and his secret advisors.

And as the Bush administration puts our “fight or die” military in harm’s way to attack civilians who are fighting and dying just to expel US from their country, the Bush administration heavily arms our peace officers with military weapons, and via the PATRIOT Act, encourages them to adopt a “fight or die” mentality in a war against US! On an increasing basis, state, county, city and town police are being drafted to enforce federal laws, and are receiving military equipment pay-offs for their compliance.

Our sleeping populace, caught up in the realities of TV, sports, and this unbelievably stupid and meaningless no-choice presidential election, can’t see what’s happening right before their eyes on an increasing basis. Police are growing both extremely hostile and extremely dangerous, all the while enforcing the laws of a lawless Congress and a lawless, lying president and war criminal.

Where was the outrage by Americans over the brutal government killings at Ruby Ridge, at Waco, or in the Diallo and Spruill killings by police? Where’s the outrage now? See if this sounds familiar as regards the Clinton-Reno blather and bureaubabble following Waco now being used by “government officials” in the Victoria Snelgrove police murder: “The Boston Police Department accepts full responsibility for the death of Victoria Snelgrove, an Emerson College student who would have turned 22 next week,” said a somber Commissioner Kathleen O'Toole. “I met with her parents (yesterday) afternoon, and as I am sure you understand, there are no words to describe their grief.”

That quote is from the report in the Boston Herald of October 22nd entitled “Police commissioner ‘takes full responsibility’” by Tom Farmer, and reported on Alex Jones’ Prison Planet. It goes on to say, “Snelgrove was struck in the left eye by a projectile containing pepper spray that was fired by police trying to quell rioting on Lansdowne Street after the Red Sox beat the New York Yankees to clinch the American League pennant. Because the death was caused by a police officer, it is being investigated by the Suffolk district attorney.”

Then we are apprised of the usual government official cop out: “‘The young woman last night met a very untimely death and as the commissioner said, we as a city, as mayor of the city, as police commissioner, we will take responsibility for what happened but we will also move on the hoodlums who were out on the street of our city last night,’ said a somber Mayor Thomas M. Menino.” Heart wrenching and sincere, no?

Definitely “no!” Notice how it was the fault of “hoodlums,” or “hooligans,” or “punks?” Were they the ones armed to the teeth? Were they the ones who wore protective Plexiglas visors to protect their eyes? Were they the ones who wore helmets and bulletproof vests? Were they the ones who carried military style fifteen shot semi-automatic pistols? Were they the ones who were armed with fully automatic machine-guns? No? Then who were the ones at the scene so armed – the Bean Town Koppers? Aren’t these, the public serving and protecting peace officers that should have shown restraint? Or did they resort to cold-blooded terrorist tactics typical of a group of arrogant, above-the-law police state Nazi Gestapo?

And O’Toole and Menino accept full responsibility? When will they resign and turn themselves in for indictment? Another steaming load of unmitigated government rhetoric to pronounce their guilt and complicity while dodging any and all punishment for allowing their jackbooted Gestapo to terrorize and kill an unarmed citizen. Sounds a lot like Waco and Ruby Ridge! Sounds a lot like Abu Ghraib! So much for the thought that our uniformed servants only terrorize, torture, maim and kill towel heads and camel jockeys. If our government leaders can pick and choose who will be allowed to live and who will die, how do you know that you or someone in your family won’t be next?

Ted Lang<<Theodore E. Lang>>

THEODORE E. LANG 10/24/04 All rights reserved

Ted Lang is a political analyst and freelance writer.

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