Washington, DC (TFC) – Two of the country’s top cops issued statements attempting to silence the discussion of police accountability. Patrick J. Lynch, an NYPD union boss, sent out a letter telling journalists to shut up about the subject. Sheriff Michael Bouchard of the Major County Sheriff’s Association, sent out a letter demanding that Facebook censor police accountability pages. Removing peaceful discussion of the issues will lead to more violence, but these two gentlemen don’t care if they kill their own officers. They are more concerned about politics than peace. Their officers will end up dead because of it.
Sheriff Michael Bouchard’s release demanded Facebook and Amazon censor police accountability pages and products. He did this while using the title of “Sheriff.” He was attempting to use the power of governmental office to engage in a suppression of civil rights. Not only would his plan stifle debate and therefore create violence, he’s a criminal. Sheriff Bouchard does not get to set the parameters for debate and dissent in this country. His attempt to trample on the First Amendment rights of citizens should result in his removal from office and criminal prosecution. It won’t because the thin blue line will protect him.
Throughout his little rant he talks about “rhetoric” and “propaganda” being the cause of the targeted killings of law enforcement. He closes by stating that “Eighty six families will never see their husband, wife, sister, brother, mother, or father again.” The obvious inference is that 86 cops have been murdered by targeted killings spurred by “rhetoric” and “propaganda.” Of course, that’s a complete and utter lie. 19 officers officers died in automobile accidents. Was the propaganda and rhetoric responsible for that? Were the officers on Facebook while they were driving? 14 died because of heart attacks. Was the rhetoric so fierce that they just couldn’t take the stress and had a heart attack? 4 died of “9/11 related illness.” By the time it is all said and done, only 28 of the officers that died this year were killed by gunfire. Two of those were killed by other cops. The number of targeted killings is very low, but it is on the rise. It is on the rise because of administrators like this guy. Cops that are too stupid to see that violence is not a result of the rhetoric, it’s the result of the officers overstepping their bounds. How do officers overstep their bounds? How about by trying to suppress the inalienable rights of others while using the power of their badge? Sheriff Bouchard is the reason cops are being targeted. But it won’t be him that gets killed. He’ll be safe in his office, but the rage that is felt because of another stooge attempting to assert authority he doesn’t have will get a cop on the street killed.
Beyond being an arrogant authoritarian thug, he doesn’t really have a good grasp on the English language. In his missive, he writes:
“It is unimaginable that a retailer would promote and profit off of the bigoted targeting of an individual based on their race, religion, disability or sexual preference, yet “fuck the police” merchandise remains on their website.”
While the rhetoric he despises so much would suggest that officers view themselves as a “race” apart from everyone else, that worship of the badge is a “religion,” that the inability to think beyond their orders is a “disability,” and that screwing over the citizens could be a “sexual preference;” it’s obvious that he is just trying to misrepresent the position and play a victim card he does not possess. If he is the type of individual that would engage in this type of propaganda and misrepresentation, how can he or any of his officers be trusted not to do the same thing in a courtroom?
In New York, Patrick J. Lynch sent his email to reporters. Here it is in full:
The NYPD union just sent this email to reporters telling us we aren’t “qualified to judge the actions of police” pic.twitter.com/SqmsJNxCsk
— Polly Mosendz (@polly) September 15, 2015
A paragraph by paragraph response:
See, the funny thing is that journalists go everywhere officers do. The difference is that we only have a camera with which to shoot back. In the last three years, I have stared down the barrel of a shotgun and an AR-15, I’ve had an emotionally disturbed man swing a club over his head while threatening to hit Joshua Treestar, I’ve been manhandled, I’ve been pushed down, and I’ve had a man smile like a completely lunatic as he gripped the pistol at his waist. The funny thing is that every one of the assailants above was a cop.
He then brings up the dangers of the job he chose. Nobody is buying it anymore. Being a cop isn’t even in the top ten of dangerous jobs. I would suggest that assaulting someone and denying them due process based on nothing but someone pointing a finger is “un-American.” Writing articles about police actions is not worsening police/community relations. Officers violating the rights of citizens is. If the Union he represents would stop defending cops that assault innocent people and work to stop people from being assaulted, we wouldn’t have much to write about.
Frankly, no. There is no set of circumstances that justifies assaulting a man leaning against a pole. But let’s review some of those other circumstances. The officer is the defendant in four other police brutality lawsuits. How’s that for more information?
Yes, due process is the American way of life. Where exactly was the due process for the man tackled? The officer should be fired, and so should Lynch. That won’t happen though; the thin blue line will again prevail. However, the continued targeting of the freedom of speech and journalists suggests that maybe it’s time for us to unite in the same way. Perhaps we could use the black ink of our profession to counter the corruption that has become synonymous with the blue line. Maybe the ink of journalists could be the thin black line that separates officers like these two from their ability to suppress the freedoms of the country. Maybe eventually it could separate them from their jobs.
The suppression of the right to speak about the corruption and brutality will inevitably lead to more violence. The violence will place more officers in caskets. Meanwhile, these two will go on betraying the trust of those they are supposed to represent. Attempting the suppression of rights and the practice of defending the indefensible is what is leading to these killings. Lynch and Bouchard should be forced to attend the funeral of every officer killed in a targeted killing. After all, it’s their fault it continues to happen.