Head of Fraternal Order of Police rips Obama for his remarks on Ferguson
The executive director of the Fratenral Order of Police had some choice words about President Obama's remarks from Martha's Vineyard yesterday regarding the unrest in Fergyson Missouri.
Jim Pasco reminded the president that the investigation into the shooting of Michael Brown is ongoing and that commenting on something when he doesn't have all the facts is wrong.
"I would contend that discussing police tactics from Martha's Vineyard is not helpful to ultimately calming the situation," director Jim Pasco said in an interview with The Hill.
"I think what he has to do as president and as a constitutional lawyer is remember that there is a process in the United States and the process is being followed, for good or for ill, by the police and by the county and by the city and by the prosecutors’ office," Pasco added.
Pasco harkened back to 2009, when Obama criticized a Massachusetts police officer for arresting Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, when he was attempting to break into his own home. Obama said the officer had “acted stupidly.”
"That is one where the president spoke precipitously without all the facts," Pasco said, adding that the current situation "is a much larger and more tragic incident."
Pasco said both police and members of the public are entitled to due process but said he is not convinced police have used excessive force in Ferguson.
"I'm not there, and neither is the president," Pasco said. "That is why we have due process in the United States. And this will all be sorted out over time. But right now, I haven't seen anything from afar — and maybe the president has — that would lead me to believe the police are doing anything except to restore order."
Obama on Thursday called for “peace and calm on the streets” of Ferguson after “disturbing” clashes between police and protesters stemming from the police killing of an unarmed black teenager.
"There is never an excuse for violence against police or for those who would use this tragedy as a cover for vandalism or looting," Obama said in a statement from where he is vacationing in Massachusetts. "There's also no excuse for police to use excessive force against peaceful protests or to throw protesters in jail for lawfully exercising their First Amendment rights."
The officer involved in the Ferguson shooting is a member of the Fraternal Order of Police and is being represented by one of its lawyers. His name has not been released to the public.
The president failed to define what he means by "excessive force" used by police who were pelted with rocks, shot at, and had Molotov Ciocktails thrown at them.
I'm sure the president thought he was being even handed by blaming both protestors and cops for the violence. But you can't have law without order, and preventing people from looting and setting cars on fire usually necessitates strong arm tactics. And inevitably, non-violent people are going to be unfairly arrested simply because they're in the wrong place at the wrong time.
This is what happens in a riot. It is chaos. The president and many on the left criticizing the police seem to think that the cops can restore the peace in an orderly and logical manner, without resorting to physical violence. It is regrettable that things get out of control but that's what a riot is all about.The police, if they use excessive force, contribute to the mayhem and perhaps make it worse. Bu there has been very few injuries and no deaths among the rioters which would suggest the police have been remarkably restrained in the face of severe provocation.
This does not excuse the actions of the individual polceman who gunned down an unarmed man. Nor does it speak to the apparent disparity in the racial makeup of the Ferguson police department and the preception that they are anti-black.
But it does make President Obama out to be clueless when he speaks off the cuff about matters that he - and the rest of us - know very little about.