There is no reason to attack and attempt to murder police officers and there is no reason to burn down businesses and vandalize cars. There is also no reason to allow out-of-control police to beat arrestees to death (which might or might not be what happened in this case, but it seems likely that it is what happened) even if the person under arrest is a drug dealing gangster scumbag with an extensive arrest record, as seems to be the case with Freddie Gray. Police have every right and obligation to use deadly force when there are no other options, when their own lives are in danger or when the lives of civilians are in danger, but they don’t have the right to beat a man in handcuffs to death or to shoot someone who posed them no threat.
I hate the crazy hateful anti-police and anti-government crap just as much as I hate the crazy hateful racist cop and corrupt politician crap. I want a society that functions in a fair, just, ethical, practical and sensible way not anarchy, not tyranny and not extremism.
Yeah “You gotta break some eggs to make an omelette”, but the eggs being broken are black owned businesses, ordinary people’s cars they need to get to work, and police officers who had nothing to do with the incident in question.
There is a real danger to society when millions of Americans distrust and even hate everyone of certain professions…extremely essential professions…police, lawyers, politicians, journalists (“the media”), doctors (“mainstream medicine”), scientists…it is a big problem.
A few of the facts that are clear:
Police do not and should not have the right to beat suspects in custody.
The use of force is only justified so far as it is necessary to protect officers or the public from immediate harm and/or to complete the arrest of a non-compliant suspect.
Baltimore has a big problem with police brutality and use of excessive force and it is not just a “black and white” issue as 63.3 percent of Baltimore’s residents are black and 50% of it’s police force is black.
Freddie Gray had a very long arrest record and he and at least one of the officers involved likely knew each other personally from previous encounters.
Freddie Gray’s fatal injuries likely resulted from one or more of the officers kicking or stomping on his neck and back.
The transport vehicle stopped 3 times on the way to the police station.
The racial and ethnic backgrounds of each of the police officers suspended is not known by most in the general public.
The police commissioner and the mayor are both black, as is 50% of the police force as mentioned earlier.
The rioting targeted innocent people who had nothing to do with this incident: innocent businesses, innocent motorists and innocent police officers.
The rioting was not the fault of protesters or of police, rather the rioting was likely the work of gangs and random opportunists.
The black community in Baltimore has been hurt far more by the rioting than by the death of Freddie Gray, but Freddie Gray is one one case among many.
If Freddie Gray had that many convictions, it is likely that he was not convicted of many of them for lack of evidence, which could mean he was falsely or erroneously accused of some of the charges or it could mean that he was guilty but could not be convicted for lack of evidence or due to a technicality, perhaps related to police misconduct.
Baltimore has had a problem with police using excessive force especially in working class neighborhoods for a long time.
I also think it is a problem to hire officers at too young an age. There should be screening for racism as well. Racists should not have badges and neither should people who get off on being bullies. It is also important to realize that it many cops are ex-military. When you take a young recent war vet who just came from kill or be killed situations where the fight or flight instinct is allowed to control his behavior and maybe he has undiagnosed PTSD and don’t give them treatment or proper training, it should not be a surprise if some of them resort to deadly force when confronted with a crazy homeless guy waving a knife around. There are many different issues at play. Every incident of a civilian killed by police in suspect circumstances should be properly investigated. There is too much assumption involved too often, in my opinion. These incidents happen for a variety of reasons.