Post-Floyd life


Tony Bouza

Two years, plus, it’s time to review the results of George Floyd’s killing.
It certainly sparked a debate. Also riots, trials, a movement and a lot of hand-wringing and national anguish. Looking back we can see a vast emptiness. Mostly wasted time.
I’d credit the Ivy League for exemplary progress in minority inclusion. Bravo. A lonely light in a dark sea.
Policing remains a disaster. The unions are in charge and the thumpers call the tune. The acting chief’s major moves signal bedtime with the union. The mayor seems disinterested and unengaged. Reports surface signaling business as usual. The two most recent chiefs abandoned disastrous legacies.
Contrast the aftermath of riots here and the Jan. 6 D.C. insurrection. The latter led to a deep and continuing investigation and almost 1,000 prosecutions. Amazing, and bravo.
Minneapolis did nothing and looters, arsonists and smashers go scot-free despite ample photographic evidence of their depredations. Just another in a long string of failures.
Racism lives.
Reform dies.
And politicos engage their dance of death with merry indifference.
Leftist activists bid fair to destroy the Democratic party with their strident cries.
A great example of the genre occupies the seat once held by Don Fraser.
Is there a single guide pointing the way?
The gods delivered an historic respite from street crime in 1973. Roe v. Wade resulted in the gentrification of American ghettos—so what new slums would our underclass occupy?
What national initiatives undertaken to ameliorate poverty—child care? Good luck.
Is it a mystery that crime and dissolution are caused by social and economic forces and that cops are irrelevant to crime’s levels? Racism doesn’t consign Blacks to exclusion and poverty—it forces them to the only escapes available: addictions (to figuratively escape the awfulness) and crime, to pay the freight.
Street crime is a problem for sociologists and economists—not cops.
Cops can respond to and ameliorate the trauma of violence—but not prevent it. They can respond to accidents and illnesses, and regulate traffic. They can also investigate—but by then the crime has occurred. Cops are useful.
I did one brilliant thing in my 60 years of involvement in police work—I proved that the most aggressive, legal policing simply doesn’t work to control street crime.
Other fields inspire study, critical literature, experiments, reform and informed discussion. Policing inspired hucksterism.
I love watching the police pundits (usually retired chiefs) wax eloquently on the issues. I used to think they were fools. But I was wrong.
I was the fool. They were selling very marketable snake oil.
Gulp. Gulp. Gulp.

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