The recent video of Seattle Police Patrol Officer Ian P. Walsh punching a 17-year-old woman in the face as she tries to help her friend evade him has caused much controversy. There is an understandable reaction among many decrying the young women’s lack of respect for authority. This is correct, they do lack respect for the police, but the question is why?
Let’s start with the jaywalking citation situation in Seattle. As the rest of us around the country are now learning, Seattle is quite tough on jaywalkers. Even doing stings to catch the evil doers. All this, of course, is claimed to be for public safety, but is it really?
Like so many cities in our recession ravaged land Seattle has a budget shortfall. It is cutting services, which makes politicians mad as they have less pork to pass around. Naturally, they look for additional sources of revenue. Many cities abuse traffic citations and parking tickets to this end, but Seattle seems to have decided to go back to issuing excessive numbers of jaywalking citations to raise more money. They resort to this kind of legal plunder to avoid raising taxes or increase the deficit, hiding behind the guise of protecting the public. People know what’s going on. It’s just a form of robbery. When the police become a blue gang enforcing an extortion racket they command no respect. All they have left is their ability to use violence to get people to submit, a situation guaranteed to foster police brutality.
Instead of criticizing the young women for disrespecting a police officer they should be commended for their courage in standing up to him. It is only by not tolerating government abuses that we can put an end to them.