This post doesn’t live here anymore. It migrated to my other blog:
The Big No-No: An Outsider on American Fascism,
where it resides under the title:
“Reese Witherspoon v. Police: America Is a Police State and Nobody Minds”
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I think you’re letting your prejudices against America skew your perception of the situation.
When a cop stops a drunk driver, he does NOT want to deal with any other drunken occupants of the car for a very good reason . . . he doesn’t want Drunk #2 SHOOTING HIM while he’s attempting to get Drunk #1 off the road.
Reese should have stayed in the car.
She should have kept her mouth shut.
She should NOT have tried to trade in on her celebrity.
I’m glad she was arrested . . . and had the good sense to apologize.
But she didn’t shoot him. All she did was talk back to him. And though it wasn’t pretty that she brought her celebrity into it, it’s not a crime.
You are so right. Unless you carry one of their “cards” the police are always to be feared. I always thank my lucky stars that I am not a person of color living in this country…One of my colleagues was constantly pulled over because “what are you doing in such a nice car?”
Exactly. Of course for Reese Witherspoon it was only a PR booboo, but for many people it’s a serious problem that the police can pretty much do what they want, when they want, to whomever they want, without reason, and without apologizing when they step over the line.
A bold, yet true, post, my friend. I notice that many people in this country complain about police officers, until something like the Boston Marathon bombing happens, then police officers (temporarily) become heroes that we are not allowed to malign for some unspecified period of time. Then our amnesia kicks in again and we go back to the way things were until the next tragedy.
Yes, people complain, but no one tells a police officer that their questions are none of their business. Although, I take that back. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post.
I have mixed feelings about this. I think it’s way too easy in most cities and counties to become a police officer or sheriff’s deputy. It seems like almost any idiot who wants a badge, a uniform, and a gun for the wrong reasons can get one somewhere. At the same time, I think being a police officer is a grossly undervalued profession in our country in terms of respect and income which doesn’t exactly attract intelligent, ethical, emotionally stable people in large numbers to become public protectors.
I agree. Police training in this country is a joke. It’s a few months at most, and most of that is spent honing shooting skills. I also agree that the profession doesn’t attract enough smart people. It’s like teaching in that way.
Exactly! We entrust our children every day to people who aren’t even paid a living wage and who are expected to manage large classes, sometimes frightening student (and parent) behavior, constant interference by school administration and state legislatures, ridiculous state-mandated standardized testing schedules and still they are expected to find the time, creativity and inclination to provide the kids with a meaningful education. It’s teacher-appreciation week at our schools and you know what we are encouraged to send them? Office supplies – because the schools won’t supply them enough and everyone knows the teachers are expected to dip into their own pockets to provide what their students need. Try to deliver a lesson plan when you’re not even allowed enough paper for hand-outs or when half your kids come to class without pencils. We treat schools like daycare and teachers like badly-paid servants (and hold them accountable for the failings of the parents and legislators), and then we wonder why intelligent, dedicated people aren’t drawn to the profession. Sorry. Stepping off my soapbox now. This is one of those issues that makes me crazy – what a mess we’ve made of public education.
Way to subtly change the subject! 😉 Don’t worry; next post will be something completely different. And yes, I agree with you!
My first ever ticket was for “running a stop sign” in San Marcos. I was maybe 19 at the time.
I was on an awkward piece of roadway where traffic to the left is completely obscured by the bend in the road and trees that grow along it. I stopped, pulled forward to see around the bend and stopped again. A minute or two went by as the traffic moved past me. I still couldn’t see beyond the trees, so I pulled forward a bit more, as I had plenty of room; the sign and the white line were well away from the actual intersection.
A few moments later, a San Marcos police officer coming from my left stopped in the roadway, turned on his dome light (it was starting to get dark) and waved me across. I thought that he was being a nice guy, but no. He turned on his overheads and pulled me over.
I immediately got out of my car and asked him why he pulled me over. He was maybe all of 22. He then proceeded to tell me that I ran a stop sign. I told him that was ludicrous, as I had been stopped for several minutes before he waved me on. He wasn’t there to see my initial stop and he missed out on how many times I moved forward, always stopping fully while waiting for my chance to enter the flow of traffic.
He disagreed with me, so that’s when I said, “I guess your shift must be almost up and I’m your last stop of the day so you can meet your quota?!”
He didn’t reply. I took my ticket and the next day, I went to the station and complained about it. They told me that my only recourse was to see the judge and have the cop present. But I knew I had other options – I ended up taking a driving course at Bergstrom (it was free) and I got out of the ticket that way. I had experienced the horrors first-hand of what small-town cops and judges get away with, and wasn’t interested in playing that game.
And chances are, the cop simply wouldn’t show up for the hearing. Yes, I agree that the quotas don’t help. Policing should be measured by more than how many people you can write up in a day.