Even as I’m writing a comment about police abuse of power there is yet another dust-up brewing over police arresting a person who was taking video of them. This dust-up from Rochester, New York includes a breathtakingly brazen act of official retaliation, where supporters of the arrested person gather for a meeting, only to have four police cars show up to issue parking tickets.
Is this conduct “petty”? Yes and no.
As official retaliation goes, parking tickets aren’t much. Then again, these poor souls didn’t do anything except show up to a meeting. What happens in a direct confrontation where words of criticism are actually spoken?
But we really should see the larger point here. How can these officers possibly think that what they are doing is kosher? There is only one way they can think that: the system belongs to them and will back them no matter what.
That is not a small or petty problem. That is a problem that is costing people their livelihoods, their freedom, and even their lives.
But again, as Lenin asked: What is to be done?