Nobody hates anything more than somebody that does the same job as they do, but sucks doing it. It brings down the whole profession. It makes everybody look bad. And while luckily, in their cases, athletes get to distinguish themselves from, say, bozos just puttering around in their driveways by affixing the word “pro” to the front of their job descriptions, cops are, by nature, “pro” (hear that, George Zimmerman?)
So it amazes me when, instead of being if not more filled with justifiable hatred and contempt for the men and women that disgrace the uniforms that many of them wear so proudly, elegantly and deservedly, cops seem to feel some sort of odd and unusual protective strain towards those of their ranks not only accused, but actually obviously guilty of committing acts of police brutality!
Why in the world is that?
Lord knows, if I were a jazz artist and there was a guy on the drums that simply couldn’t play, I’d want him kicked out of the group because he’d more than certainly be ruining the perception of not only me as a player, but also affecting the way people thought of me because not only would his bad playing overlay my good, but people would question why a good player would even be a part of a group that had such a hack on the drums.
Similarly, if a cop were violent, negligent and deranged to the point that he or she was a borderline negative reflection on police everywhere, wouldn’t you expect that “good” cops, the ones that took their jobs seriously and liked to be admired and respected as professionals, should dismiss the offending officer as an isolated freak more readily than the general public is forced to do time and time again?
Shouldn’t those good cops be the most eager to say “That is not what we do!” every time a deed is discussed, witnessed or videotaped in which an officer of the law has been caught behaving in a manner that not only could be described as “unprofessional”, but keeping it real, could be called, and not just hysterically, outright criminal?
Full disclosure: the title of this blog post isn’t even mine. It’s a joke that a friend emailed in response to my joke that director Quentin Tarantino – who’d been threatened with a boycott of his films by NYPD Comissioner Bill Bratton because Tarantino had been in town protesting police brutality – should have actually been protesting in favor of police brutality.
And allow me to be “Black” for just a second – although I won’t stay long, I promise – one of the most frustrating and simultaneously amazing things that happens in criminal situations is when Black folks are criticized for not snitching.
A writer with a modicum of ability already got to the bottom of the Black people, “Stop Snitching” ethos, but let’s conclude once and for all that snitching is a bad thing. One of the worst things you can be labeled is a snitch. It’s fatal to the Mafia, a wretched indictment against a child, and pretty much something that no one would want to be. Even cops have a “Blue Wall of Silence” to hide behind.
Yet my people are supposed to be so bereft of character that we should eagerly forfeit information against one another?
Why don’t the cops lead by example on that one. I mean, after all, they’re getting paid to do it.