by Simon Black: In
Case You Really Have To Flee the Authorities…
I had the privilege
of seeing Roger Waters perform “The Wall” to a live crowd
of over 40,000 fans at the LA Coliseum on Saturday night – the
second time I’ve seen the show on this tour.
It was an amazing
production – I wholeheartedly recommend the experience as it’s
something that no DVD or album recording could possibly reproduce.
At one point,
Waters paused his set and began telling the audience about Jean
Charles de Menezes, a 27-year-old Brazilian national who was shot
8 times by British police several years ago at a south London
tube station after being mistakenly identified as a terrorist.
adhering to the “shoot first, ask questions later” model
of peace enforcement, have never been held accountable for taking
the life of an innocent man at point blank range.
stand at the top of the slope and give our governments, and particularly
our police, too much power, it’s a very long and dangerous
slippery slope to the bottom,” Waters said.
The crowd went
berserk, roaring with approval.
gives one hope that the message is sinking in; most folks, it seems,
have a conceptual understanding that governments are corrupt and
abusive… but at the end of the day, they’ll still fall
in line behind the political system.
An entire lifetime
of programming, starting practically at birth, reinforces that government
and police are the “good guys”. It’s a difficult
inclination to break.
that we all hear on an almost daily basis about corruption and abuse
of power are appalling indeed. But most people think that they’re
just aberrations in an otherwise good system… and that it’s
just not going to happen to them.
Until it does.
is a great example. The New Jersey resident was driving on I-40
in Tennessee when he was stopped for speeding. The officer then
asked him if he was carrying large amounts of cash.
Reby said that
he had about $20,000, upon which the officer asked if he could search
saying later, “I certainly didn’t feel like I was doing
You can probably
tell where this is going… the officer promptly confiscated
the cash, claiming that it might be used for drug trafficking. Reby
explained that he was on his way to buy a car he’d found on
eBay (and even showed him the eBay ad), and showed that the source
of funds were legitimate.
At least a
real criminal knows what he’s doing is wrong; he knows that
he’s committing an immoral act by shooting or robbing someone.
The police, on the other hand, think their actions are legitimate,
that they’re just “doing their job.”
This is intellectually
dishonest and morally reprehensible. Everyone involved, including
the officer himself, agreed that Reby committed no crime… that
it’s perfectly legal to carry cash.