Monday, February 16, 2015

USA Police system obsolete: Antonio Zambarno-Montes of Pasco, WA is the last straw

Valentines Day 2015 Protests in Pasco Washington
Police who shoot-to-kill inappropriately are the result of failing cop-cultures.

The Pasco police shooting of Antonio Zambrano-Montes in February 2015 is, or should be the last straw: The way our policing is done in the USA is not only obsolete, it is obscene.


DISCLAIMER: NONE OF THIS IS OFFERED A LEGAL ADVICE. IT IS ALL JUST MY OPINION. ANYONE CARRYING A WEAPON SHOULD BE THOROUGHLY FAMILIAR WITH THE LAWS CONCERNING FIREARMS IN YOUR LOCATION.

ALSO, NOTHING HERE SHOULD BE CONSTRUED AS MY APPROVAL TO DO VIOLENCE OF ANY KIND. MY INTENT IS TO GIVE MY OPINION ON CERTAIN THINGS THAT ARE JUST NOT ACCEPTABLE TO ME.
---------------------------------
A reform of the USA's hob-cob police system is decades overdue.

The other day I posted an article on Facebook similar to what follows:
A Proposed New Rule for police (Revised)

Once you shoot someone, even if you are legally in the right and justified in the shooting, you no longer are eligible to carry a firearm. Period. 

That is how it would be: Whether the shooting occurs on duty or off duty, no more guns for that cop. Once you have shot a person, you should be assigned to sit behind a desk or walk a beat, direct traffic, talk at school assemblies, do unarmed jobs, take it or leave it.

If you really are in danger of death or serious injury, I cannot tell you not to your weapon -- assuming it is legal that is -- but as a cop you would get only one incident like that. Then you would be up for a job change. Not to punish you but to protect the public.

I bet we would see police thinking twice before they pulled that trigger in situations like that of Antonio Zambrano-Montes, who was gunned down by police in Pasco Washington last week in Pasco, Washington.
------------------

Explanatory Remarks

In view of questions and criticisms concerning my Facebook page, I had best clarify what I was trying get at.

Police must never shoot unless someone is in immediate danger of death or serious physical injury from a determined aggressor, and only if the law allows it and you think it absolutely necessary.

Please do not take the following or any comment of mine as a recommendation to shoot anyone under any circumstances.

But once you as a cop do shoot a person, you should be done with your weapon. You should have to turn it in. Nothing new or radical with this part: I assume this is what already happens now in most places within the United States.

What Would Change?
I am suggesting that you don't get the gun back as a cop, to use while on duty. You can shuffle papers maybe, or man crosswalks, behave yourself, talk to kids at schools, ride along with an armed cop if you want: You have been relieved of certain duties, one of which is to carry a firearm.

If this makes some police supporters uncomfortable, so be it: Police who are trigger-happy need to be weeded out, and since we currently have no means to determine who those bad cops are likely to be, we need to do something and do it now. At this time we see cops that are repeatedly using excessive force. We also see a great deal of well-documented racism. Both are wrong. Police administrators need to be pounded for allowing that.

Other Ways

My suggestion above might be one way to do that, but there are undoubtedly other ways, okay?

The point is, the status qua is not acceptable to the general public in my opinion.

Measures Not Extreme
If my Facebook post seemed extreme, what many police have been doing is even more extreme, at least in the minds of many citizens, myself included.

Unarmed people, trying to escape but posing no credible threat, you don't shoot to kill. That is a no-no.

You don't shoot-to-kill with suspects whose backs are turned on you or who are just trying to run away especially with no indication that they are intent upon killing or doing serious harm to others. You don't kill someone who has tossed a handful of relatively harmless gravel at you. I am not talking about rocks that could kill you, mind you. A medium to large rock can be a deadly weapon. I am not addressing that issue.

Home on the (Firing) Range

How are police trained? To shoot to kill or to shoot to stop/disable a violent suspect?

Learn to shoot low. What you practice is what you will probably do in a real situation: When you practice on the range, so what do you practice? To shoot low, or to shoot at the heart? The head?

I believe some police departments may need to make changes in the way they train, because shooting to kill relatively harmless suspects is not okay.

This is not Iraq, okay? And the citizens and residents of Pasco, Washington are probably not ISIS.

You must learn to be a cop and not on your own terms but on terms that are acceptable to the general population.

Maybe in Iraq or another country you were a soldier.

You were fighting with perceived enemies.

Your local suspects, however, are not necessarily your enemies. Sometimes they are drug users, sometimes they are mentally ill, sometimes they are drunk but they are not your enemies and you can't just gun them down in the streets in front of candy stores.

Someone asked me, "Do you recommend that I shoot every time I feel I am in danger?"

No! Of course not. If a cop did that he or she would be shooting people all the time. If a reasonable person in your position would consider that their life was at risk, I think that is probably a different matter. Consult your attorney and know your rights and responsibilities if you must carry a gun.
A police badge is not a license to kill. You can't intentionally kill someone for insulting you, for example. You must not use more than reasonable force.

Bad Work Cultures
If you are on a police force, you cannot have a work-culture that insults minorities or belittles citizens with problems. It is forbidden. You cannot participate in a work-culture that views the public as your enemy. You cannot participate in a work culture that disallows some residents as inferiors with less/fewer rights than other groups in the community. If your force is like that, you may have to choose between blowing the whistle or looking for a new job.

Police forces with bad records on must be shut down! Shut down and replaced with new, federally trained police if necessary.

National Standards for Police  (New training and screening standards for one thing.)

If the recent history of unwarranted killings -- Some would call them "murders." -- by police are any indication, it may be that we need a new federal program and federal standards for training cops, with psychological profiling to weed out higher risk applicants. What we are presently doing is not adequate.

And if police departments don't clean up their act, the public will be forced to do it for them.

If you are in law enforcement, it is your responsibility and your privilege to do this on your own, and make the process transparent to the public (but some of you have not been doing that).

And when and if police do things that are improper and or illegal, you must start holding them accountable. The public perception is that police investigating themselves is an obscene practice. Many people, myself included, do not feel that police are adequately monitoring themselves in many parts of the country.

Profiling for Cops

Psychological profiles are needed for good and bad cops, and what they have been using does not work.
 
I wonder if anyone is doing psychological profiles on these cops that are shooting unarmed and unresisting suspects. If not there should be. We need to know what kind of cops are doing this, so they can be screened out in the hiring process. We do psychological or psychosocial profiles on other criminals, but we seriously need them done on our police, in order to know which applicants are too risky to consider for police work

Are War Vets a Bad Risk?

I am a veteran myself, but I have questions about whether certain vets, but not all, should be screened out during the hiring process. Do battle-hardened, returning veterans make "good cops?

That might depend on how you define a good cop. It also might depend upon the attitudes and cultural memes accepted among the men and women in their units in the military.

Especially if they have already killed people or have an "us-them" mentality that view people in black and white terms, enemies and friendlies, lets say.

Important Questions

Some of these people may already have a lot of good qualifications, but we must ask ourselves, Does their service-connected training make them more trigger happy, or less so?

Is there a difference between vets who have seen action versus those who worked in background and support? Has anyone done psychological and psychosocial profiling in understand the benefits and risks associated with cops with these backgrounds?

Our police forces need to be asking a lot of questions, and getting the right answers before they turn loose warriors on the streets of America. Just saying ...


I hope that helps to clarify my position.

Please feel free to let me know if I made a mistake here or a wrong assumption, okay?

DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OFFER THE ABOVE AS LEGAL ADVICE. CONSULT YOUR ATTORNEY BEFORE YOU DO SOMETHING REALLY TERRIBLE, LIKE SHOOTING SOMEONE. THE BEST WAY TO WIN A FIGHT IS TO AVOID ONE.

Note: Frank Ellsworth Lockwood is a retired Oregon teacher now residing in Richland, Washington. Pasco, Kennewick and Richland make up the area in eastern Washington known "Tri-Cities, Washington."

#police #pascowashington #killing #antoniozambarromontes #policereform #callforpolicereform #obsoletepolicesystem #obsoletepolice #copculture

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please comment:

Google+ Followers

Followers

Follow by Email

Total Pageviews