Friday, January 01, 2010

I just don't trust police

I don't have a good track record with police. I have pretty much never seen them as anything but a) the enemy or b) bumbling fools who couldn't find their own arses with both hands. A lot of this comes from years of festival going and a diametrically opposed view on drug use from both our government and the police force, but it also comes from a bunch of experiences in which me & mine have been on both sides of the law. In fact, I have been most disgusted by them when I was a victim of crime - mostly because they seemed only interested in the amount of paperwork that would be generated and nothing else. They definitely didn't care about me, nor did they care about the perp they caught (because his mother called them and told them he had done it, not due to any effort on their part). I did, as it happened, care about the perp (still do, he's my neighbour), and I wanted his so-called friends to be held as accountable as he was. Apparently photos of said friends taken on the retrieved stolen camera couldn't help the police identify the other kids involved.

I know this doesn't mean all cops are terrible, I know it's pretty much entirely the institution and the process. So when I say "police", I mean the great amorphous mass, not the people. No doubt they are mostly like everyone else with a job - doing their best with what they get handed.

But this story, about the police chase that ended in the death of a two year old girl? I was trying so hard to keep an open mind. Then I read today that the chase involved two highway patrol cars and a helicopter. There was a chopper following these guys. I know there will be an investigation, and I can't know all the circumstances from where I sit, but seriously, I am struggling to see why it was necessary to continue a high speed chase when there was a chopper on their tail, and at least another 100km of pretty frequent towns with other highway patrols who could be alerted and updated with the two men's whereabouts. A little girl died because of this. Nobody should be defending anyone's actions until they have been investigated with a microscope.

It goes without saying that the two men driving the car hold the ultimate responsibility, despite the incomprehensible claim by one of the offenders' brother that "it's not their fault. All they were doing is a job and getting away, that's it." Yeah, right, getting away at any cost. About as justifiable as apprehending them at any cost.

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