Without fail, conservative politicians and conservative media have jumped all over the recent murder of two NYPD officers to further their narrative that those of us who want reform and better training in law enforcement are fomenting anti-cop violence.
Just this morning, Fox News ran a segment asking if America had lost respect for police officers – and you guessed it, they blame President Obama and New York mayor Bill DeBlasio, among others. Rudy Guiliani was on Fox News yesterday pushing the same message that protesters and politicians critical of the corrupt police officers were the problem, not the corrupt police officers and departments themselves.
It is worth pointing out that there’s a little truth to what they’re saying, although it is most certainly unintentional. There are some anti-government types, including members of Cop Block and Open Carry Texas such as Kory Watkins, who are most certainly trying to hijack a legitimate cause for their own political gain. These people have a very vested interest in making sure that distrust and hatred of all branches of the government burns high through slandering good cops so that they can then use the good intentions of protesters to erode government functions in a manner they can take advantage of. In other words, they’re wolves in sheep’s clothing, hoping for others to do their dirty work for them.
Tales of political deceit and subterfuge aside, no protester in their right mind should be celebrating, encouraging or even attempting to legitimize violence against police officers. My friend Chad R. MacDonald explains in this piece for Big Appled:
The actions of a few bad cops do not justify the death of anyone else, especially other police officers. The actions of a few hooligans should not cast aspersions on demonstrators against police brutality. Especially if a madman from out of the city wants to make a name for himself by killing New York cops. This after he shot his ex-girlfriend.
Blaming protestors for the killings of these officers is shortsighted, as good and moral people are outraged by both of these recent and tragic incidents. You cannot blame the Mayor, or anyone else, for actions they were not involved in, just as you cannot blame all police officers for the death of Eric Garner. To say the protestors are to blame for subsequent violence against the NYPD is illogical. The true protestors are demonstrating against violence, not advocating for violence. To say otherwise is dishonest and/or ignorant. (Source)
Yet, that’s exactly what the conservative narrative is – that the very people who are demonstrating against police brutality are also encouraging lone wolf madmen to assassinate police officers. Legitimizing or trying to encourage violence against members of law enforcement – why does that sound so very familiar? Oh right, remember the Cliven Bundy incident earlier this year? Remember how Sean Hannity and other conservative pundits fawned all over the guy, right up until he made the “I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro” remark? Yet despite his statement, Hannity still went on to say that Bundy’s cause was legitimate, racial language or not.
Don’t believe me? Here it is straight from the transcript of the show, from the Fox News website itself.
However, I also want to say this. The ranch standoff that took place out in Nevada was not about a man named Cliven Bundy. At the heart of this issue was my belief that our government is simply out of control. Now, to me, this was about a federal agency’s dangerous response to a situation that could have resulted in a catastrophe, and that means people dying and people being shot, kind of comparable to what we saw in Waco, Texas.
It was about hundreds of armed federal agents and snipers and sharp shooters surrounding a family, and not because that family posed a threat to anyone else, but because their cattle happened to be grazing on the wrong patch of grass, and they were eating government grass.
In other words, when I believe government officials, when they overstep their line, I think it’s my job to call them on it. And make no mistake about it, I’ll continue to do just that. (Source)
So we’ve learned that when a white, conservative rancher’s family and supporters in Nevada resist arrest and threaten government agents over land they haven’t paid grazing fees for in decades, it’s the government allegedly overstepping their boundaries. When right-wing, anti-government types kill innocent police officers, they’re completely ignored by conservative media as Media Matters pointed out.
Yet when a black man passively resists arrest for selling untaxed cigarettes in New York City, and dies as a consequence of being placed in a chokehold, the ridiculous argument from the folks over on the right is that he shouldn’t have resisted. According to them, it’s also the fault of us peaceful protesters and of course, President Obama when a lone madman guns down two cops and expresses anti-police rhetoric on the internet. Does anyone else see this as ridiculous and even racist, or just par for the course from the usual hypocrites over in the world of conservative media?
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