Is the murder of police on the rise?

Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, a police officer from Fox Lake, IL, was gunned down yesterday by 3 thugs. Two of the suspects remain at large in one of the largest manhunts in the history of Northern Illinois.

Officer Glinewicz was the 3rd Illinois cop to die in the line of duty this year and the 8th gunned down in the past month nationwide. That works out to about 100 dead policemen over the course of a year.

But are the deaths of police on the rise?

Christian Science Monitor:

So far, there is no indication that Lieutenant Gliniewicz was intentionally targeted, though investigators are not ruling out that possibility, according to Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Cmdr. George Filenko, the lead investigator on the case. Gliniewicz was pursuing three men – two white, one black – at the time of his death. No clear suspects have yet been identified in the Gliniewicz shooting.  

While the recent deaths of Gliniewicz and Deputy Goforth have brought new attention to the risks members of law enforcement face on the job, police officer deaths appear to be on the decline overall.

Police shooting deaths in the US are down 13 percent this year, compared with the same January-to-September period last year. There were 30 last year and 26 this year. The Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which records such data, cautions making a correlation between the recent rash of officer deaths and overall trends in law-enforcement fatalities. Steve Groeninger, a spokesman for the group, told The Associated Press that the only clear thing we can point to is that "there are people out there who intend to harm police officers for whatever reason."

Following Goforth's death, President Obama said in a statement on Monday that “targeting police officers is completely unacceptable – an affront to civilized society.” Goforth and Gliniewicz's deaths will likely continue a dialogue about the intersection of race, politics and law enforcement well into election season.

Numbers are meaningless in this case because they don't tell us if more police are being targeted because of the hateful rhetoric coming from black activists. Calling for the death of policemen simply because they wear the uniform has become commonplace and you have to wonder if the surge in shootings of police is the result of it being declared open season on cops by activists.

We've already seen police in several jurisdictions who worry about defending themselves lest they be run through the gauntlet of media and screaming demonstrators who think that there is never a justification for a police officer to kill a suspect - especially if they are African American. Democrats, looking to energize their black base, are pandering to the activists of BlackLivesMatter even as their membership screams for the death of policemen. GOP presidential candidates tip toe around the issues raised by BLM and refuse to call them out for their violent, hateful rhetoric. 

Unless civilized society takes a firm stand against these cop killers and who is urging them on, the body count of law enforcement officers is only going to go up.

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