“Cops” is a cable-TV reality show and “Bad Boys” is its theme song. Now viewers in a growing number of places can get the street action watching bad boys take on the cops on the nightly news. The expansion of civil unrest across the American landscape is ominous enough, but the ferocity of the abuse of the nation’s men and women in blue is more alarming still, a precursor to anarchy. The truly deplorable who hold the upholders of the law in contempt must get a grip, or be restrained, before the violence crosses the line into a primitive land of no return.
The shooting of a total of six police officers last weekend in three different cities, including two dead in Kissimmee, Fla., erases all doubt that a badge is not the shield it once was. The gunman in Kissimmee who fired at the two officers who were making a night patrol in a high-crime neighborhood, will be charged with first-degree murder. Across Florida, in Jacksonville, two officers were shot with a high-powered rifle and are expected to survive. Two state troopers were hit by gunfire in western Pennsylvania; they, too, are expected to survive.
The assault on policemen can’t be measured simply by the numbers. The number of officers killed in the line of duty is actually down 17 percent so far this year over last year. But crime, including murder and rape, is up by 5.3 percent. The trend, whether cause and effect, nevertheless accompanies the leftists, usually dressed in black masks, who challenge the law as the police follow a strategy of avoiding confrontation.
Witnesses to the clashes in Charlottesville between alt-right protesters and alt-left agitators over a Confederate statue say the police, obviously under instructions from the top, did almost nothing to keep combatants apart, enabling and encouraging the violence. Charlottesville is the symptom of something deeper at work across the land. Says Alan Dershowitz, the distinguished Harvard law professor and sometime courtroom defense lawyer: “Do not glorify the violent people who are now tearing down the statues. Many of these people, not all of them, many of these people are trying to tear down America.”
In Boston, black-clad Antifa thugs hurled bottles of urine and chemicals at officers trying to control protesters. Thugs threw rocks and bottles at officers at a Trump rally in Phoenix this week. This metastasizing assault on the police first quickened when Michael Brown, 18, a petty thief, tried to take a policeman’s gun away from him and was killed in Ferguson, Mo., and that was followed by riots in Baltimore, the slaying of five officers protecting a Black Lives Matter march in Dallas, mob attacks on Trump supporters during the 2016 presidential campaign, and the silencing of speakers on campuses in several states.
The line between civilization and anarchy is blue and thin, and left-wing radicals imagine they can achieve their goals by spilling blood, breaking bones and striking fear in the hearts of the innocent and the law-abiding. This will lead society into a new place in America, where nobody should want to go.
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