Friday, July 08, 2016

This Will End Badly

Five police officers were murdered by snipers at a Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas. Suspects in custody. One murderer is dead. It is too soon to say much more.

Oh crap:

Snipers operating from rooftops in Dallas killed five police officers and wounded six more in a coordinated attack during one of several protests across the country against the killing of two black men by police this week.

Police described Thursday night's ambush as carefully planned and executed and said they had taken three people into custody before a fourth died. Dallas-based media said the suspect died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after a standoff that extended into Friday morning.

The fourth suspect exchanged gunfire with police during the standoff at a downtown garage and warned of placing bombs throughout the city. Police have not yet confirmed his death.

The article does not mention that it was a BLM protest. While too soon to say too much other than that my heart goes out to the families and colleagues of the officers, you can be sure if violence broke out at a Trump or Tea Party rally, that association would have been highlighted to imply--at least--causation. [UPDATE: Depressingly related.]

Don't be surprised when crime rates go up as police pull back out of self preservation.

UPDATE: Let's reflect that the one thing I could get on board after the Ferguson incident was that I've long believed our police have been over-militarized for the threat they routinely face. Only a portion of the police need heavier weapons and military-style training.

But if this is the beginning of a new routine environment for our police--and I have no way of knowing whether it is--then our police will need to be para-military in nature or they won't go into the streets to do their jobs.

The tribalization of our nation--which I worry about--might not be far behind. ISIL won't need to inspire jihadis to get blood on our streets if that happens. We'll do it to ourselves.

UPDATE: I'm with Williamson on this one. Pick an explanation and stick with it for the sake of having a consistent debate, eh?

I choose individual responsibility and deference to freedom of speech absent direct incitement to do harm.

UPDATE: Funny enough, the Dallas police are ahead of the game in community policing and in ending the police role in funding government on the backs of the working poor by aggressively writing traffic tickets. I've complained about this lately and it is a long-standing pet peeve of mine.

UPDATE: Related: Black lives need police protection.

UPDATE: And we need better terms for the debate.