Sunday, December 5, 2010
At some point, the whole discourse based on some spurious distinction between brutal sadistic bastards in police uniforms and the so-called "good" cops needs to be tossed out. I'd respectfully submit that we've passed that point.
Let's review: every time we hear about some vile incident like what happened to Stacy Bonds or Adam Nobody, the same tired apologists rush forward with the same tired storyline: Yes, it's regrettable, but we don't have all the facts, let's see what the internal investigation turns up, let's not condemn the whole profession for the out-of-bounds actions of a few bad apples, yada yada yada ...
That's bad enough, but what's becoming just as tiresome is the narrative that goes: well, it's time for the good cops to stop covering for the assholes in their midst, otherwise they get tarred with the same brush ...
News flash, dear friends: It Ain't Gonna Happen. The code of silence that compels cops to go all Tommy when their buddies kick the crap out of people is part of a dysfunctional organizational and occupational culture with roots going back decades. If you're a cop and your pals get the idea that you won't be there for backup, no matter what, you quickly lose the ability to function as a cop. When that happens, you're fucked. You are ostracized. No one will work with you, no one will ride with you, and you get all the shit assignments. It's going to take more than a few grassroots inquiries or (god help us) Rosie DiManno columns to fix that.
Small comfort to folks like Adam Nobody, Stacy Bonds or Lacy MacAuley, of course.
Once again, it's time to do away with a useless, spurious distinction. What's worse: asshole cops who kick the shit out of the citizens they're sworn to serve and protect, or the so-called "good cops" who look the other way and do nothing to stop them or out them?
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: a difference which makes no difference is no difference. The "good cops" in this narrative are about as useful as the "good Germans."