Thursday, October 9, 2008

Wearing Your Badge and Your Trojan White

I witnessed a pretty despicable display yesterday. A couple of co workers and myself went to Leger's for lunch in Sandy. They make a mean sammich. I had the pastrami. The only have room to eat on the sidewalk. It was a chilly day and the sidewalk outside their establishment was in the shade. So we crossed the street to eat our lunch on some benches in front of the Sandy City Building. We ate and chatted and enjoyed the last few days of warm sunshine for the year. Four motorcycle cops pulled into the parking lot and struck up a conversation with a black guy who was walking down the sidewalk.

We all made Rodney King cracks, saying the Sandy Po Po is shaking down the only black guy in the state (not a lot of brothas living in Utah). But we then immediately defended the police. Too often, cops get a bad rap. Often, they are underpaid, unappreciated and unfairly resented. The key word in that last statement was “often”. It was as if they heard our conversation and then went out of their way to betray our confidence.

They made arrangements with this random guy (I assume they paid him) to cross the street, over and over. The four motorcycle cops then hid behind a tree and flagged down motorists who didn’t properly yield to the rat, I mean pedestrian. We sat there for maybe fifteen minutes and they pulled over at least five cars. Not one of those cars came close to hitting the guy. Even though he never made eye contact with any driver and stepped right out in front of traffic, he never had to break his stride. No car came close to hitting him. But enough cars apparently violated the law enough so each of the different Ponches could take turns peeling out of the parking lot, lights and sirens a blaring like they were taking down Bonnie and Clyde.

Now let me tell you something; motorcycle cops have one purpose on this earth and that is to write tickets. They don’t recover stolen property. They don’t confiscate drugs. They don’t arrest the bad guys. Where are they gonna put them? “Hold on to my waist as I drive you to the police station.” They don’t protect, they don’t serve. All the do is shine their boots, wax their mustache and pull over carpooling minivans and jam them up. They treat them like criminals and they steal their money. They do not increase public safety. They generate revenue for the city. That is all.

I've ripped on cops before. I don't want to make this a theme. I am not anti cop. I’m not pulling some ACLU bullshit here. They perform a dangerous, unappreciated service. Like I said cops are the good guys. But how the hell can anyone defend this? Whatever minimal money they generate does not compensate for the resentment they create among their constituency with this dishonest, lazy scam.

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