“Officers who see themselves as noble heroes can be the ones who do the most harm,” writes former sheriff Rahr.
A cop for decades, she went along to get along:
. . . I had misgivings, but ultimately, I voted with the rest of the board to find the shooting justified. As their precinct commander, I knew that the officers involved were good people, and I didn’t have the heart or courage to call out their bad tactics. I just let it go. I knew nothing about the person they’d killed—except that he had a criminal record and had just committed a felony. That was enough for me to rationalize my vote, and thus dodge the risk of being seen as a traitor to my tribe. Over my 33 years with the sheriff’s office, I participated in more than a dozen such review boards, and every time, I voted in defense of the officers’ actions.
I ignored how the board’s validation of bad tactics perpetuated future bad practices. Or how it mirrored the cultural tolerance for rough and aggressive tactics in high-crime neighborhoods. The board’s approach reinforced the myth about how policing should be done in those neighborhoods—with those kinds of people. It was considered the cost of doing business.
My acceptance of this culture began to shift when I ran for sheriff in 2004 and had to listen to people outside of my cop cave during my campaign. . .
. . . We continue to use police to maintain order as a substitute for equality and adequate social services. It will take a generation of courageous leaders to change this culture, to reject this myth, and to truly promote a mission of service—a mission that won’t drive officers to lose their humanity.
Ideally, we would have more cops. They would be better trained (as in almost every other country). They would be as honest as Serpico (what? you’ve never seen it?). They would be friends of the communities they serve.
Theirs is one of the 25 most dangerous professions in the U.S. . . . a crucial profession . . . and surely more stressful than almost any other.
To lessen that stress, would it make sense to institute universal background checks? To reinstitute the assault weapons ban? To register guns as we do cars? To license their owners as we do drivers? To grant cities and towns the freedom to impose whatever weapons restrictions their votes want?
As they did back in the Wild West?
I can’t call yesterday’s outcome a “crushing disappointment” — that sort of phrase works for someone who’s trained a lifetime for the Olympics and is knocked out the night before by Covid. This wasn’t that. Nor did the jury find in Intel’s favor. Instead, the judge (inexplicably, to me) told the two parties they had to settle . . . and pushed hard (as best I read the tea leaves) for a small settlement rather than what a lot of us who’ve been helping to fund the lawsuit thought would be fair. So instead of, say, tripling yesterday, the stock dropped by half, back to 22 cents.
This article tries to make sense of it.
The bonanza I had hoped for is now off the table. But as the article notes, there are other PRKR suits before the same judge.
Those might result in settlements as well. And the Qualcomm appeal should be decided this year, and could eventually lead to a jury trial. And the company believes it has valuable new inventions on the shelf.
So I’m selling no shares and still have hopes — albeit less immediate and more modest.
I’m off to a foreign land. If I don’t post, it could be either sloth, jet lag, or an Internet issue.
If what I do post seems oddly disconnected — why am I writing about cops instead of the State of the Union? — it’s because I wrote it before I left.
To compensate, I will extend your subscription as circumstances warrant at no charge.
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