A Cop’s “Worst Nightmare”: Accountability

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What is the “worst nightmare” one can imagine in an encounter between a police officer and a member of the productive class? One answer is offered by the experience of Eric Garner, who died after being choked and swarmed without cause by a thugscrum of NYPD officers. That nightmare continues for his wife, his six children, his grandchildren, and others who were deprived of his company because of an unprovoked act of criminal aggression by privileged purveyors of government-sanctioned violence.

What, on the other hand, is the “worst nightmare” for a police officer in such a situation? In a single word, accountability.

“We have watched in disbelief as the worst nightmare a police officer can have comes true,” simpers retired Jersey City police officer Robert Cubby in a post at LawEnforcementToday.com “An NYPD officer applied what was falsely called a choke hold. Moments later, the perpetrator gasped for air and died in the hospital.”

These two developments, Cubby would have us pretend, were not necessarily related. It’s not that Garner’s government-employed assailants killed him; he just chose that particular moment to die.

Since 1993, NYPD policy has described any move that constricts the breathing passages as a chokehold, and the use of such tactics is categorically forbidden. Under a New York State law that went into effect in 2011, aggressive contact with the throat of another person is attempted strangulation and is a felony if the victim suffers a serious injury. Cubby either doesn’t know the policy of the department that employed Garner’s assailants, the law they were supposedly sworn to uphold, or — more likely — is lying in the service of his tax-devouring tribe.

Now that the death of Garner — who was not a “perpetrator” of any sort, but a man who had just broken up a fight — has been ruled a homicide, the “career of those involved from the NYPD dangles from a thread,” moans Cubby. “The officers face the worst possible nightmare; loss of their career and being thrown in jail for a good portion of the rest of their lives.”

The same would be true of anybody else who fatally assaulted another human being without cause. Cubby and people of his ilk assume that police officers must be beyond accountability for such actions, and that the loss of their exalted station as dispensers of lethal force is a fate worse than death.

“While these officers now become defendants and have to, somehow, gather enough emotional strength to get through this horrible accusation [and] gather all their financial resources to defend themselves, stay out of jail and retain their jobs, it is time for the LEO family to support our NYPD brothers and sisters,” insists Cubby. He wants the state’s armed enforcement class to display its solidarity with Garner’s killers through a “United We Stand with NYPD” social media campaign: Law enforcement officers and their friends are urged to change their Facebook profile picture to an upside-down NYPD flag. That green, white, and blue banner, which was adopted by the department in 1919, is draped over the coffins of officers who are killed in the line of duty.

If a costumed tax-feeder can’t kill without consequence, what’s the point of living?

2:11 pm on August 6, 2014