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An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

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An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby rabble » Sun Nov 20, 2011 11:12 am

Or, "Why I Feel Bad for the Pepper-Spraying Policeman, Lt. John Pike."

I like it for the short history lesson on the evolution of police protest tactics, from the 60's to present day. And there's a link inside the article to another one on the "Broken Windows" theory of policing from 1982 which looks interesting but is pretty long and I haven't finished it yet.

I agree with the general theory; Lt Pike is a product of our system, not just a bad apple. That's made very apparent by the excuses his superiors and colleagues are making for him.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Michael Patrick » Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:17 pm

Yes, those poor Nazi guards who herded Jews into the gas chamber. I feel sorry for them, because it wasn't them, it was the system.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby rabble » Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:24 pm

Michael Patrick wrote:Yes, those poor Nazi guards who herded Jews into the gas chamber. I feel sorry for them, because it wasn't them, it was the system.

Yes, an entire dysfunctional system. We can't excuse the system by saying these are "isolated incidents."

Do you remember the Milgram experiment? There are always brave souls who refuse. There were Nazi soldiers who refused, too. We don't hear much about them.

If everybody refused, we'd be a lot better off. But as we all know, as a species we're not very good at that.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Bwis53 » Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:44 pm

Exactly what Wall St. is banking on...
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Michael Patrick » Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:18 pm

I just don't feel sorry for guys like Pike. If I'm sorry about anything, it's that his superiors won't feel any of the heat. They deserve to answer for their actions as well.

The system and the people who operate in the system are equally culpable.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby rabble » Sun Nov 20, 2011 5:11 pm

I guess I should have explicitly stated that I don't feel sorry for him either.

But he is definitely a product of our police system. He probably joined the force because he wanted to catch bad guys, not because he wanted to hurt people and get away with it.

And now he IS a guy who nonchalantly pepper sprayed a bunch of people just sitting there. And as near as I can figure out, he WAS following the rules of engagement.

Like I said, I found the short course in the history of crowd control to be the best part of that article. I think Pike deserves what he gets because while his superiors are defending him, he was the only cop there to spray that stuff like it was room freshener. I get the feeling that if he hadn't sprayed, nobody else would have done it either.

He was following rules that his superiors wrote, so they're defending him. I think we just might find that that those superiors DO feel some heat. Maybe even across the country.

The rules get changed by events. First the Civil Rights movement, then the anti war movement, then WTO in Seattle, then 911. All of those caused a shift in the paradigm. Here's one more.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Henry Vilas » Sun Nov 20, 2011 5:27 pm

California campus police on leave after pepper-spraying

"Without any provocation whatsoever, other than the bodies of these students sitting where they were on the ground, with their arms linked, police pepper-sprayed students" wrote Nathan Brown, an assistant professor in the college's English Department, in an open letter to the chancellor.

He said that police then used batons to separate the students, kneeled on their bodies and pushed their heads to the ground.

"When students covered their eyes with their clothing, police forced open their mouths and pepper-sprayed down their throats," Brown wrote.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby snoqueen » Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:44 pm

That is plain sick, spraying pepper spray down the student's throats.
At that point they were no threat to anybody. This officer should not be on any police force in the country.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby rabble » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:00 pm

snoqueen wrote:That is plain sick, spraying pepper spray down the student's throats.
At that point they were no threat to anybody. This officer should not be on any police force in the country.

I agree.

But I'd be willing to bet my next paycheck that there's at least one like him on every police force in the country. I'm not certain yet if he's a true representative sample, but I think it's a clue about what we've let the police force become.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Meade » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:04 pm

Michael Patrick wrote:I just don't feel sorry for guys like Pike. If I'm sorry about anything, it's that his superiors won't feel any of the heat. They deserve to answer for their actions as well.


What about the demonstrators and their superiors? Do they deserve to answer for their actions?
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Michael Patrick » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:43 pm

Meade wrote:
Michael Patrick wrote:I just don't feel sorry for guys like Pike. If I'm sorry about anything, it's that his superiors won't feel any of the heat. They deserve to answer for their actions as well.


What about the demonstrators and their superiors? Do they deserve to answer for their actions?


They didn't deserve what they got.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby DCB » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:45 pm

Meade wrote:
Michael Patrick wrote:I just don't feel sorry for guys like Pike. If I'm sorry about anything, it's that his superiors won't feel any of the heat. They deserve to answer for their actions as well.


What about the demonstrators and their superiors? Do they deserve to answer for their actions?

first of all, the Occupy groups don't have 'superiors'.

and second, they are not inflicting pain on passive individuals.

and finally, what the fuck is your point?
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Lily » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:44 pm

1. That particular police officer needs to be FIRED.
2. The UC-Davis should be fined for not only for the medical costs of the students peacefully protesting but also for reckless damages for sicking the police force on THEIR students.

That entire incident is wrong on so many levels the entire state of California should be ashamed and demanding an explanation.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Meade » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:46 pm

Michael Patrick wrote:They didn't deserve what they got.


The few who were pepper sprayed got off easy. 30 minutes of disabling pain and then... nothing. No broken bones, no bruising, no blood.

The ones who are students at UC-Davis deserve immediate expulsion.

None of them are being drafted and sent to Vietnam. None is a freedom rider.

Most voted for Obama with hopes of change. But Obama represents the 1%. Obama IS the 1%. I sympathize with them in their disappointment.

But UC-Davis is not the 1%. Neither is the chancellor or the campus police chief. And certainly not the police officer who did the victims a favor by gently spraying them with pepper spray - effectively de-escalating the situation.
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Re: An Article on the Pepper Spray Mentality

Postby Igor » Sun Nov 20, 2011 11:44 pm

In many cities, police officers perform far more brutal acts, and have far more brutal acts performed on them, every day.

I don't agree with the tactics of the police officer, or whoever made that decision. However, I also don't think that it is symptomatic of some great police conspiracy either. Since there is no real goal or spokesman of the protesting group, negotiating with them is not possible. The most effective tactic would be ignoring the protesting group entirely. However, anyone with a little brother knows that ignoring annoying behavior does not typically make it go away, it only transforms it, or ratchets up the intensity until annoyance is achieved.
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