I’ve been sitting back trying to figure out how to best word my thoughts over the past several days. This is going to be a long ass post, so please stay with me as I’m going to be airing out a lot of my own dirty laundry in this as well.
I want to start off by saying that I am anti-cop and completely against our current prison/justice system. There are so many better ways of handling “crimes” and harm to others than what we currently have, and when it comes to things like DV and assault, cops are the last thing I want to see inolved due to just how many of them are abusers themselves.
I am someone who left the criminal justice field after seeing the horrors of what is promoted just in the EDUCATION side of things. While there were some classes that discussed restorative justice, it was something that was treated like this unreachable utopia rather than what we see in many cultures around the world. There was this constant us vs them mentality that was fostered and nurtured by the teachers, especially the “retired” cops, from day one. Abuse was common in the class, whether from the teacher or the students, and we were expected to either go along with it, or leave.
Those of you who have known me for a while know that I had a teacher who on day one had us all stand up, and told us to sit down if we had ever committed a crime as a child, even if we’d never been caught. Four of us remained standing. He pointed to us and called us all liars. When I called on him to prove it, he marched us up in front of the class, changed the parameters to “ever committed a crime in your life, including getting a parking ticket” and had students then proceed to grill those of us who remained standing of various “crimes” they could think of.
This is how they start it. They enforce conformity by creating an us vs them from the beginning. They do it to the students to show them that standing up and calling something unjust out will get you punished and othered.
THIS IS INTENTIONAL.
I managed to make it until I had 3 classes left (technically 2 but one teacher gave me a D over calling him out on things) before it started triggering my PTSD to a point where I couldn’t continue anymore. I couldn’t continue to overlook things that were being done and suggested to students. Keep in mind this wasn’t the police academy, this was a criminal justice certificate/degree path at a local community college!
I had gone into the field with the misguided notion of helping children and youth who had been failed by the education system and had fallen through the cracks. What I saw on the inside wasn’t helping them, but simply coralling them through the system until they either “shaped up” or wound up in adult prison. They were treated like they were less than human unless they were the perfect “model” prisoner, and even then they spoke of struggling to remain that way due to how dehumanized they were by the system. Everyone acted as if they were a criminal ready to re-offend, even when they were trying to better themselves.
I was willing to overlook all of that because I was convinced I could somehow fix the system from within, despite seeing how the young men (I was one of the few “women” in the classes) who were getting ready to head off for the police program were changing and beginning to act in ways that set off so many red flags that I to this day wonder just how many of them would have become abusers.
I used to believe the lie that the police were there to protect and serve, and it was only after seeing how differently people were treated due to their skin color and class status that I started to see the walls I’d built up to hide the truth falling around me.
The only “good cops” I’d ever met were ones who later left indisgust over how things were done (such as ignoring DV cases) or who were brand new and convinced like I was that they could change the system from the inside. None of them are currently cops, and every one I’ve met is now anti-cop.
There currently are no “good cops” in this system, as we have repeatedly seen over the past several nights. None of them are calling out the bad cops, and we’re in fact seeing the opposite of what should be happening when the bad cops are arrested. 57 cops quit in protest over 2 cops being arrested for assaulting a 75 year old man and then trying to claim “he fell” like it was some sort of Mafia hit. It was only after video evidence proved this to be a lie that they arrested the two cops. None of their fellow cops turned them in, none of them stood up and said “this is wrong” they all just pretended like it didn’t happen.