A startling conclusion on police brutality

How do you avoid getting shot by the police?

Don't resist arrest.

When you take on the police, you are taking on the community – perhaps not in a fine-grained way, but that is ultimately the transaction.  A few overly aggressive people who make interesting watching can get in front of a camera, but the people running the show are chosen in elections by the community, however imperfect that process may be.

The police are not an imperial, an occupying, or a barbarian force.  They are agents of the community, chosen by the elected officials of the community, who have hired them to "maintain domestic tranquility," in the words of the Constitution, for the benefit of the entire community.  The cop wants to get home to the wife and kids and will use deadly force – with the approval of his employers – to do that.  His patrol is not a tournament.

What is the logic, what is the scenario, of attacking a cop when engaged in a transaction with that cop?  That transaction might be stop and frisk, or it might be getting pulled over, or it might be getting arrested.  None of these things is in your favor.  None of them is going to improve your life.  But they are also facts of life.

Now suppose that in the middle of that transaction, you, as the object of it, attack the cop.  What outcome do you envision?  How do you expect this to play out?  Police get their strength from being in communication with each other and providing back-up for each other, essentially without limit.

Suppose you incapacitate the cop in some way.  That will not be the end of the transaction.  You will be on the cop's video, and it's very likely that back-up is arriving in real time.  The cop's fellow policemen will walk through walls to get to him.  Why do you want to take that on?  If you do get away, having injured the cop, the police as an organization will hunt you down.  Their record at doing so is very, very good.

An arrest is not a battle of equals.  You, indeed, may be the better man.  That is not the point.  By taking on the cop, you are taking on his personal deadly force, and more importantly, you are taking on his organization, the police force, and, by implication, the community.  You are not going to win that engagement.

What have you gained?  What did you expect to gain?

How do you avoid getting shot by the police?

Don't resist arrest.

When you take on the police, you are taking on the community – perhaps not in a fine-grained way, but that is ultimately the transaction.  A few overly aggressive people who make interesting watching can get in front of a camera, but the people running the show are chosen in elections by the community, however imperfect that process may be.

The police are not an imperial, an occupying, or a barbarian force.  They are agents of the community, chosen by the elected officials of the community, who have hired them to "maintain domestic tranquility," in the words of the Constitution, for the benefit of the entire community.  The cop wants to get home to the wife and kids and will use deadly force – with the approval of his employers – to do that.  His patrol is not a tournament.

What is the logic, what is the scenario, of attacking a cop when engaged in a transaction with that cop?  That transaction might be stop and frisk, or it might be getting pulled over, or it might be getting arrested.  None of these things is in your favor.  None of them is going to improve your life.  But they are also facts of life.

Now suppose that in the middle of that transaction, you, as the object of it, attack the cop.  What outcome do you envision?  How do you expect this to play out?  Police get their strength from being in communication with each other and providing back-up for each other, essentially without limit.

Suppose you incapacitate the cop in some way.  That will not be the end of the transaction.  You will be on the cop's video, and it's very likely that back-up is arriving in real time.  The cop's fellow policemen will walk through walls to get to him.  Why do you want to take that on?  If you do get away, having injured the cop, the police as an organization will hunt you down.  Their record at doing so is very, very good.

An arrest is not a battle of equals.  You, indeed, may be the better man.  That is not the point.  By taking on the cop, you are taking on his personal deadly force, and more importantly, you are taking on his organization, the police force, and, by implication, the community.  You are not going to win that engagement.

What have you gained?  What did you expect to gain?