Eighty years ago, America met a policeman named Michael, who – with four other officers – reminded us that police live to serve, love to serve, protect the least among us. Michaels’ mission – and book’s title? – “Make Way for Ducklings.” A hearty Boston officer deigned to stop traffic for a mother duck and family – so, how much more he would do for us? Today, policing is far tougher. And where is the gratitude? Hard to find.
Today, members of Congress, Democrats elected on the presumption of responsibility, honor, integrity, and decency – go to violent anti-police riots, push violence, tell rioters to “get more confrontational.” Ostensibly serious officials – all Democrats – call for “no more policing.” What has come over us – or half of us? See e.g., https://www.foxnews.com/politics/maxine-waters-confrontational-protesters-republican-brooklyn-center; https://www.foxnews.com/politics/squad-member-end-policing-duante-wright; https://www.bing.com/search?q=talib%20police; https://www.foxnews.com/politics/rep-maxine-waters-spotted-pulling-over-to-confront-police-la-stopping-black-driver.
The answer is temporary insanity or ideological hostility to America. Blame some of it on sheer ignorance. Reckless officials and raucous rioters do not know “Michael” – or Cathy, Qassim, Carl, or Carmen – in their neighborhood. They take law and order for granted, assume the worst, generalize from exception to a rule, stereotype the “other,” and adopt mob-think.
Blame part of unconscionable opposition to “other-regarding” police on Democrats who default to a judgmental, uneducated, elitist media – together ranting because they can, ungrateful because raised that way, indifferent to the truth because activism is easier than accuracy. Rioters and political ideologues are amplified by media agitators.
But the real blame for telling an untrue story – pushing a false narrative – that diminishes police falls on activists who knowingly sow chaos. Seeking to undermine the law, divide and conquer, push class warfare for political advantage, plan violence, use error to incite terror.
So, four questions dog our society: First, who are these fixated, ideologically anti-America, violent people? Second, why would any political leader follow them? Third, what effect are these riots – systematic disrespect for police – having on society? Finally, what can we do?
Who are they? They are self-appointed disruptors, Marxist agitators, anti-democratic and anti-capitalist activists, many rolling in money, foreign, dark money, left-leaning money – hard to trace, erase, and – from a law-and-order perspective – a disgrace. Citizens are worried, violence is widening not tapering, and even the FBI is now concerned. See, e.g., https://www.thestreet.com/mishtalk/politics/portland-ice-building-set-on-fire-by-antifa-where-is-the-media-coverage; https://www.bizpacreview.com/2020/06/11/project-veritas-undercover-footage-proves-where-antifa-funding-comes-from-933237/; https://thefederalist.com/2021/04/15/fbi-director-wray-refuses-to-disclose-if-antifa-has-organized-finances-to-launch-coordinated-attacks/; https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/14684453/candace-owens-slams-biden-over-antifa/; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antifa_(United_States).
The last Administration tried to get to find those funding violence – including ANTIFA. The present administration is mum. One wonders why. Politics makes strange bedfellows – as we have read on China and US politicians – but appeasing anarchists is a dangerous business. Where they get their money remains an open question – and important one. See, e.g., https://www.foxbusiness.com/lifestyle/what-is-antifa-and-who-funds-it; https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/blm-leader-arrested-for-allegedly-spending-200k-in-donations-on-tailored-suits-a-house-and-guns; https://www.foxbusiness.com/real-estate/marxist-blm-leader-buys-1-4-million-home-in-ritzy-la-enclave;
Second, why would any patriotic American leader – never mind member of Congress – follow Marxists, anarchists, and violent rioters anywhere? The obvious answer is that those who do share the Marxist agenda, see a collateral interest in sowing violence, or are just not aware of how anti-American, anti-constitutional their activities look.
Every politician indulging this violence, which continues to destroy minority businesses and promises, is a Democrat. Why? That is a question any responsible voter should be asking. Legislative reform constitutionally pursued is one thing, advancing violent destruction another.
Third, what effect is systematic disrespect for police having on our social order? A huge, horrible, potentially irreversible effect. Violent crime is spiking. Morale, recruiting, retention, and projected departmental strength are plummeting. Who wants a job where you risk your life and family for others, confront felons of all kinds – and get kicked in the teeth for doing so? See, https://www.bing.com/search?q=spiking+violent+crime&form=EDGEAR&qs=PF&cvid=b71a2d6df5524ee28f4417f3a2d9941d&cc=US&setlang=en-US&plvar=0&PC=DCTS.
Ungrateful, ill-informed anti-police advocates in Maryland just upped the ante. As the police take outsized risks, sustain injuries and threats, legislators stripped police officers of their “Bill of Rights,” effectively disincentivizing anyone from becoming an officer, staying, risking life.
The left celebrates, as average citizens are left dismayed, soon to pay a price for this insanity. The state’s Republican governor – no Trump fan – was himself dismayed, Where is the logic? See, e.g., https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/10/us/maryland-police-reform.html.
On the numbers, police officers around the country began quitting last year. The trend is accelerating. In Chicago, Minneapolis, DC, New York, in the West, Southwest, Northwest, Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, officers are saying, “time to go” – that is, if people do not appreciate us, let them protect themselves. When good officers leave, who is left? What we are witnessing is a crisis within a crisis – Good men and women are saying, enough. See, e.g., https://endoftheamericandream.com/hordes-of-demoralized-police-officers-are-quitting-their-jobs-and-americas-streets-are-less-safe-as-a-result/; https://nypost.com/2020/02/08/americas-shrinking-police-forces-could-spell-trouble-for-our-safety/; https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/bryan-preston/2021/04/06/exclusive-exodus-underway-as-record-shattering-surge-of-austin-police-officers-leave-the-force-n1437738; https://thecrimereport.org/2021/01/15/police-departures-soar-nationwide-amid-rising-criticism/.
Finally, what can we do about this – a well-funded anti-American mob pushing coast-to-coast violence and rolling riots; elected officials behaving like juvenile delinquents, undermining rule of law; and mounting departures from law enforcement? Here is what we can do.
We can support those enforcing law and order, turn out, speak out, step up in legal, legislative, and democratic forums – to say, this is our land, our democracy, our security – and no radical leftists are going to take from us the legacy of love for the country.
We can make clear to elected officials, in person, in writing, by calls, in meetings, with unified civil action that we – the vast majority in every city, state, and nationally hold rule of law, order, and peace in the streets above activist violence.
And we can show law enforcement – in small ways, as well as larger ways, that we support them, honor them, revere the risks they take for us, and we are the majority – we want them to know we care. Tell them, stop by and reinforce them, bring them something, make it real.
These may seem small measures, but these are the sort of measures that have always preserved our decency, rule of law, and respect for those who keep it. Here is one last secret: Michael, that officer championed in an award-winning children’s book 80 years ago still embodies accurately and is a true emblem of American law enforcement. Never forget that. He never does.