The problem of police handling protests against the police

California

Summer Lin, “How are wildfires named? What’s the Lightning Complex? Answers for California fire season,” Sacramento Bee, August 20, 2020, https://www.sacbee.com/news/california/article245117530.html


Pittsburgh

I’m not sure if this is more bullshit or if Bill Peduto is climbing down[1] from being an asshole about protests at his house.[2] In a way, it’s inherently bullshit and can’t be otherwise because police are, in many ways, fundamentally a wrong answer.[3] And it certainly doesn’t help when Peduto claims,

My job is the only job in the city that has to be in that middle and has to be able to recognize the rights of everyone. And yes, that makes me unpopular to both sides, but if I wasn’t unpopular to both sides, I would not be doing my job.[4]

If there is one thing that can be said about the “middle road” in any contest of ideas, it is that it is guaranteed to be incoherent. In this case, it’s at the very least problematic to (still) have police enforcing controls on protests when police are in fact a large part of the problem protesters are protesting against with the racial justice movement—anything they do other than withdraw is guaranteed to further exacerbate protesters’ anger. But Peduto is changing how protests will be handled;[5] I hope it’s really an improvement. But the problem really is more fundamental than the command structure.

Andy Sheehan, “Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto Makes Leadership Changes In Response To Police’s Handling Of Protests,” KDKA, August 21, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/08/21/pittsburgh-mayor-bill-peduto-police-changes/


  1. [1]Andy Sheehan, “Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto Makes Leadership Changes In Response To Police’s Handling Of Protests,” KDKA, August 21, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/08/21/pittsburgh-mayor-bill-peduto-police-changes/
  2. [2]Megan Guza And Abby Mackey, “Police disperse overnight protesters at Peduto’s house, mayor decries neighborhood harassment,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 19, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/police-disperse-overnight-protesters-at-pedutos-house-mayor-decries-neighborhood-harassment/
  3. [3]David Benfell, “On police,” Not Housebroken, August 12, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/08/10/on-police/
  4. [4]Bill Peduto, quoted in Andy Sheehan, “Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto Makes Leadership Changes In Response To Police’s Handling Of Protests,” KDKA, August 21, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/08/21/pittsburgh-mayor-bill-peduto-police-changes/
  5. [5]Andy Sheehan, “Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto Makes Leadership Changes In Response To Police’s Handling Of Protests,” KDKA, August 21, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/08/21/pittsburgh-mayor-bill-peduto-police-changes/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.