How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

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Pdxfashionpioneer
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Re: How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

Post by Pdxfashionpioneer »

There's a couple more things I would like you to consider about the controversies around Mr. Floyd.

Convicting his alleged murderer, everyone is only alleged until found guilty in a court of law in the US system of jurisprudence, and keeping him, or any other US law enforcement officer, convicted isn't as simple as anybody else. Beyond how much leeway most judges and juries are willing to provide law enforcement officers convicting officers of any but the most flagrant abuses of their power is pretty rare. Kneeling on the neck of a subdued suspect who is continually saying "I can't breath" for 8 1/2 minutes including 2 minutes after the man has gone unconscious will probably qualify. Especially given that the officer on being told, "I can't breath," said officer responds, "I don't care." How they'll empanel a jury for this trial is beyond me.

Assuming the police officer is found guilty, the immediate grounds for appeal will be on the basis of the "qualified immunity" that the US Supreme Court granted to all law enforcement officers a number of years ago. What it comes down to is that if the accused officer had no reasonable reason to think that what he was doing in the heat of the moment was a forbidden excessive use of force, he's home free. Common sense isn't good enough, as Stu can confirm in the heat of a life or death moment you don't time to think nor does common sense have time to emerge. The officer is acting on her training. If no other police officer had been convicted of killing a suspect by kneeling on the suspect's neck for 8 1/2 minutes and consequently they hadn't been trained to NOT kneel on suspects' necks for that length of time, because that's excessive force, then under the doctrine of qualified immunity the officer isn't guilty of anything; she was just doing her job!

It's Catch-22; you can't convict a law officer for doing something that killed a suspect unless they were trained to NOT perform that specific act, presumably because some other officer has been convicted of killing a suspect that way. But wait, under qualified immunity that couldn't have lead to a conviction of a law officer because the prosecutor wouldn't have had a precedent to rely on.

Can you say, "Unintended consequence?" But unintended or not, that's what the courts are stuck with in deciding these cases.

Until the Senate and the House of Representatives both pass a law that will stand up in court and the President signs off on it, that's the state of US law.

City councils, state and federal legislatures can all forbid police officers from using specific forms of force, but human imagination will always outstrip such efforts.

As to looting and rioting, absolutely they are wrong and against the law and consequently counter-productive to any group that is trying to make a point with their demonstration. Which is why all across this great land of ours the demonstrations are getting MORE peaceful by the day. Despite those demonstrations getting larger. Why? Shortly after the first night of those demonstrations, the demonstrators themselves started cracking down on the people who tried to damage property or break into stores!

If those of you who get your news from the Fox network aren't aware of this, change channels. I can tell you for a fact, that's the way it's working in Portland, OR.
David, the PDX Fashion Pioneer

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Sinned
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Re: How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

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Dave, if what you are saying is right then that's appalling. It means that the police officer has a get out of jail free card and it would be virtually impossible to prosecute and have it stick. That's completely against all human decency. Short of going up to some innocent bystander, without any provocation, putting a gun against their head and pulling the trigger then a police officer's actions are completely unaccountable. He/she can do exactly what they like. Some of your laws and thinking are completely screwed. What you are saying is that unless an action is defined as unacceptable, i.e. kneeling upon someone's neck for nearly 10 minutes, is defined as unacceptable in law then a police officer is able to say that's it's just part of their training? If that's the case then it would be virtually impossible to clver all the potentially lethal actions that could occur in the process of detainment. We'll just have to see how it pans out but I hope it isn't as you are saying. If it is then there's little hope on your side of the river.
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Pdxfashionpioneer
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Re: How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

Post by Pdxfashionpioneer »

Dennis, you got it.

But see for yourself; search the web for recent articles on "Qualified immunity." As it was explained in an article, it has indeed become a get out of jail free card. If a course of action wasn't explicitly ruled as out of bounds in their training, it's fair game for a duly sworn law officer.

You're absolutely right, we Yanks are so in love with rules we've succeeded in creating an insane hodge-podge for ourselves.

But fear not, no less an authority as Winston Churchill said, "You can always count on the Americans to do the right thing. But not until they have tried everything else."

Side note: When did the Atlantic "Pond" become a "River?"
David, the PDX Fashion Pioneer

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Re: How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

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Dave, I see that Garrett Rolfe is to be tried for the murder of Rayshard Brooks. As I said in another post, the guy was running away, he was no threat to life as he was unarmed. Apparently the taser he stole was discharged and both officers knew that. So shooting him in the back was, to say the least, disproportionate for a DUI offence. Apparently he ran because a DUI may have meant that he would go back to prison. Even if he escaped the officers could get into their police car and chase him and apprehend him later. To me it was murder. And if video showed him kicking the suspect when on the ground then ....

The Atlantic Pond?, River? whatever? It is what we call it. A pond tends to be still, stagnant but a river flows. I certainly won't argue semantics. I have much more important things to worry about. I'm of retirement age but haven't and I have to find somewhere to park my retirement funds and start taking some income from it. I ain't rich but money is not something I have to be concerned about, apart form how to spend it and MOH is very adept at that. :)
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Re: How Did the Country (USA) that Could Do Anything Turn Into One That Can't Do Anything

Post by Kirbstone »

All of you will find that the Atlantic is an Ocean and very deep, not that that mattered to the victims of the Titanic and other sinkings.

The 'Pond' is just a sort-of pet name for it, but in fact there are plenty of 'flows' in it, most notably the warm Gulf Stream/North Atlantic Drift which warms western European toes big-time, year-round and the cold Labrador current which does the exact opposite for N.E. Americans......and it's widening by about 4" every year.

Tom
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