Ah. Another piece of evidence that we are officially becoming The Asshole Society.
The Asshole Society requires two basic ingredients. First, the believe that a person can do anything they want just because they want it. (Like park in a fire lane, drive aggressively, lie, cheat, steal, and even jaywalk.) Second, that when the first rule doesn’t work out, absolutely never should responsibility be taken.
I just watched this video and I have to say I’m really angered by it. I’m angered that someone who was breaking the law would react that way to a police officer. I’m angered that the officer was left along for so long and had to wait for backup while an ugly crowd formed around him. I’m angered that the crowd taunted the officer and supported the suspect. I’m angered that this police officer is now going to be subjected to unreasonable criticism and scrutiny simply for doing his job.
And, unbelievably, I’m stunned to hear that actually police officers are enforcing pedestrian laws. Somebody pinch me. That simply can’t be true!
When a police officer tells you do so something, you do it. Especially when you are in the act of breaking the law.
Jaywalking is irrelevant here. This is another one of those world famous misleading headlines. What is seen in the video is an officer attempting to enforce the law then encountering a pretty severe case of resisting arrest. The woman pushes the officer, fails to follow instructions, and struggles fiercely to get away. Her actions were illegal and put the officer at risk.
Jaywalking is usually considered an infraction or a misdemeanor. Resting arrest, however, may be a felony. That is exactly what I hope she gets charged with.
A snippet of conversation from the video:
Cop: You are under arrest!
Suspect [yelling]: Get the fuck off of me!
One thing from the video is abundantly clear. The alleged jaywalker is an asshole. Just another person who believes, “The rules do not apply to me.” Just another person who becomes angry when they get caught with their hand in the cookie jar. Just another person who can’t take responsibility for the choices they make.
A few years back I got a ticket for going 70 mph on a section of highway where the speed limit was 55 mph. I was the only car on the road as far as the eye could see and the cop felt I was a problem worth fixing. Did I agree with that? Not exactly. But I was breaking the law. Was I happy I was pulled over? No. Did the cop have any personality at all? No. But what I did do was everything I could to make the cop’s job easier. I kept my hands visible on the steering wheel at all times, I did not move, I did not get out of the car, and I obeyed every instruction he gave me. He even listened to my story but didn’t buy it. A few minutes later it was all over, without incident, and I was on my merry way. I paid my ticket and that chapter was closed. I took responsibility for my actions.
The minute that woman actively resisted the copy she became, in my opinion, a felon. No doubt she’ll get away with what she did to that copy because of the video and the publicity. That makes me sad and angry.
The president of the Seattle Police Officers Guild has spoken about the incident:
Rich O’Neil told KCPQ-TV that punching her in the face was an appropriate use of force as the officer struggled with two women and a crowd formed. O’Neil says it’s wrong to call the punch police brutality or racist.
I agree. But not everyone does. Some are saying the incident is reminiscent of other videos that show police brutality. All this cop did was try to do the handcuffs on his suspect that he had placed under arrest.
It is sad that an asshole has jeopardized the career of this police officer.