“You know, when police start becoming their own executioners, where’s it gonna end? Pretty soon, you’ll start executing people for jaywalking, and executing people for traffic violations. Then you end up executing your neighbor ‘cause his dog pisses on your lawn.”—“Dirty Harry” Callahan, Magnum Force
When I say that warrior cops—hyped up on their own authority and the power of the badge—have not made America any safer or freer, I am not disrespecting any of the fine, decent, lawful police officers who take seriously their oath of office to serve and protect their fellow citizens, uphold the Constitution, and maintain the peace.
My concern rests with the cops who feel empowered to act as judge, jury and executioner.
These death squads believe they can kill, shoot, taser, abuse and steal from American citizens in the so-called name of law and order.
Just recently, in fact, a rookie cop opened fire on the occupants of a parked car in a McDonald’s parking lot on a Sunday night in San Antonio, Texas.
The driver, 17-year-old Erik Cantu and his girlfriend, were eating burgers inside the car when the police officer—suspecting the car might have been one that fled an attempted traffic stop the night before—abruptly opened the driver side door, ordered the teenager to get out, and when he did not comply, shot ten times at the car, hitting Cantu multiple times.
Mind you, this wasn’t a life-or-death situation.
It was two teenagers eating burgers in a parking lot, and a cop fresh out of the police academy taking justice into his own hands.
This wasn’t an isolated incident, either.
In Hugo, Oklahoma, plain clothes police officers opened fire on a pickup truck parked in front of a food bank, heedless of the damage such a hail of bullets—26 shots were fired—could have on those in the vicinity. Three of the four children inside the parked vehicle were shot: a 4-year-old girl was shot in the head and ended up with a bullet in the brain; a 5-year-old boy received a skull fracture; and a 1-year-old girl had deep cuts on her face from gunfire or shattered window glass. The reason for the use of such excessive force? Police were searching for a suspect in a weeks-old robbery of a pizza parlor that netted $400.
In Minnesota, a 4-year-old girl watched from the backseat of a car as cops shot and killed her mother’s boyfriend, Philando Castile, a school cafeteria supervisor, during a routine traffic stop merely because Castile disclosed that he had a gun in his possession, for which he had a lawful conceal-and-carry permit. That’s all it took for police to shoot Castile four times as he was reaching for his license and registration.