(NaturalNews) Baltimore is in a state of “utter chaos” and Gov. Larry Hogan has now declared a state of emergency and called for troops on the streets to halt the spiraling looting and violence.
The pro baseball game has been postponed, rioters are attacking police cars, and protesters managed to loot a CVS pharmacy then burn it to the ground. When firefighters arrived on scene to extinguish the fire, more gang bangers punctured the fire hose to cause a loss of water pressure.
Threats have been made against local police departments, and gang bangers circulated a flier that called for a “purge” of law enforcement — seemingly a call for the mass murder of police officers. The city is being “destroyed by thugs,” according to its Mayor.
“Three of the city’s most violent and dangerous gangs – Black Guerrilla Family, Crips and Blood – have announced an unprecedented alliance to ‘take out’ law enforcement officers, in a move that has prompted fears for police safety across the country,” reports the Daily Mail. (An international news publisher that almost always tells more truth than the U.S. mainstream media.)
In response to all this, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake literally told the police department to “…give those who wished to destroy [the] space to do that.”
As new of her statement spread — and the condemnations kicked in — she quickly issued a clarification statement which said:
The mayor is not saying that she asked police to give space to people who sought to create violence. Any suggestion otherwise would be a misinterpretation of her statement.
The Baltimore riots are not merely a Baltimore problem; they’re a nationwide policy brutality problem
But the real story here is that this riot is not merely a Baltimore problem. It’s a nationwide problem. It just so happens that the black people of Baltimore are sick and tired of a militarized police force — an apparent goon squad of chemically-altered ‘roid heads — beating the life out of their young adults (and severing their spines and killing them in police custody).
Can you blame them for the outrage? No matter what your race, it’s now obvious that police brutality is an endemic problem in America. This is not just another “isolated event.” It’s clearly a reflection of a culture of police brutality that for some reason seems to be disproportionately focused on young African-American males.
As the following image depicts, police in America have gone from being polite public servants to rogue villains donning black masks and military gear swiped from the era of Nazi storm troopers:
Cops are unconsciously playing out their roles as brutal enforcers
What almost nobody seems to understand is the power of role playing when wearing all this militarized gear. As numerous psychological experiments have shown over the years — most notably the Stanford Prison Experiment — people automatically and unconsciously take on the roles they have been handed; and such roles are reinforced by the gear and clothing they are asked to wear.
If you dress up somebody like a cruel, thuggish prison guard and put him in charge of prisoners, he will very quickly become cruel and thuggish, even committing physical violence against those prisoners.
This is what’s happening today all across America in nearly every police department. Cops are being dressed up like storm trooper assault teams, complete with black masks, “shock troop” body pads and aggressive weapons that used to only exist on the front lines of war. They take these weapons and these attitudes and turn them against the American people, with disastrous results.
This is no longer community policing. It’s increasingly a war against the citizens.
Why black Americans now see attacking cops to be a form of self-defense – this is NOT something I condone, I’m only explaining it…
Today, black America genuinely feels like it is under attack by a “legalized gang” of villains who happen to carry badges. In the minds of many black Americans, attacking the police is not an act of aggression but an act of self-defense. (I’m not condoning it, mind you, just explaining the perception behind it for some people.)
In truth, as long as community policing is approached from an aggressive confrontational posture on the part of the police, they are going to foment reactionary violence among the citizenry. This, I believe, is the thinking behind the Baltimore Mayor’s poorly-chosen words when she explained the protesters needed to be “given space” to destroy things. (The Mayor is African-American.)
We need quality community peace officers; not all cops are bad!
Just to throw another twist at you in all this, I’m pro police! In fact, I helped train police officers in Arizona in weapon defense skills, and I served for two years as a board member of a non-profit foundation that sought to provide lifesaving gear to officers on the street. I was given an award by the Chief of Police of a prominent Arizona city, and I donated my own private funds to help local cops — many of whom were woefully underpaid and utterly lacking the safety gear they needed to more effectively do their jobs.
The police I met and interacted with there were highly professional peace officers. And across America, there are many police departments where law enforcement officers are upstanding, hardworking professionals who do a damn good job of keeping the peace, especially given the budget restrictions that almost universally plague local police departments everywhere.
But there are also crooked, militant police departments that exist in America, and they are dominated by ‘roid head cops who are truly a danger to society. These rogue cops “get off” on their power trips, running around like criminal egomaniacs, protected by the power of the badge. It is these cops who rob drug dealers to steal their cash; pull over innocent drivers so they can sexually molest them; and exhibit extreme brutality in the arrest and detainment of individual citizens, just as we recently saw in Baltimore.
The real problem with policing in America today is that it takes place in a hoo-rah culture of steroid-induced aggression and a military-inspired stance of aggression. As long as cops are trained in a combative, confrontational context, they will act out their training on the streets of America, often at great cost to the public perception of police and civility in general.
In other words, bad policing breeds confrontational violence with the citizenry, further reinforcing a spiral of violence that has led to the alarming militarization of police departments across America.
That’s why the title of this article explains this problem is not a Baltimore problem. And it’s not limited to Baltimore, either: similar confrontations between police and citizens are going to continue to escalate across America, leaping from city to city and frequently exploding out of control. The way to stop this is not to turn America into a police state with troops on the streets, but rather to change the culture of policing into one that’s less confrontational, less militaristic and more collaborative with local communities.
Smart policing is hard work. You can’t keep the peace with tear gas and rubber bullets. It takes dedicated peace officers building trust with local communities and working incessantly to treat citizens with dignity, even if they are being arrested for an apparent crime.
When I trained with cops in Arizona, everybody was taught to de-escalate the violence
What happened to de-escalation training in America? When I trained with cops in Arizona, we used to gather in a padded room where we were given “DT training.” That stands for “Defensive Tactics,” and it was basically a hand-to-hand combat training room where cops were trained to de-escalate the violence while simultaneously protecting their own lives.
In fact, I was present during one of the very first days of a “basic training” camp for would-be cops, and one of the first exercises I saw was the pairing up of candidates who were instructed to literally “beat the crap out of each other” until one of them gave up and screamed for help.
This exercise, I was told, was used to weed out recruits who were too weak willed to keep fighting when the odds were stacked against them. Police departments don’t want cops who give up and surrender; they want cops who will keep fighting for their survival down to the very last second.
But at the same time, they also want cops who don’t relish physical violence. So good police training always involves instruction in de-escalating violence through a variety of tactics. For example, a law enforcement officer’s first tool of de-escalation isn’t his gun but rather his VOICE. Police are rightly taught to use clear, concise, direct and authoritative voice commands to dissuade people from violent actions or intent.
A properly trained police officer, in other words, almost never needs to use violence to resolve a problem. The combination of their voice, the presence of their partner (or backup support from additional cops), and the mere presence of their firearm should be more than enough to dissuade any conscious person to rethink their actions. When those tactics fail, cops are trained in what are essentially simplified martial arts techniques to control the hands of the suspect, disarm a suspect, or disable a suspect.
I say all of this to support the following point: No cop should ever need to beat the life out of a suspect in order to apprehend them. Any cop that has to resort to such extreme violence is either a poorly trained cop or someone who seeks out violence and uses his badge as an excuse to commit it. There is absolutely no excuse for the kind of treatment by cops that led to the death of Gray in Baltimore. At every level, that outcome is an outright condemnation of what can only be characterized as “piss-poor training” of Baltimore cops.
When you master the art of strategically applied violence, you do not need to instigate violence in order to stop violence
Good cops are trained in the art of strategically applied violence in order to de-escalate violence when they encounter it. Similarly, I am trained in tactical handgun combat skills so that I never need to shoot anyone except as a last resort lifesaving option. The more you master the skills of applied martial arts, hand-to-hand combat or handgun combat, the less you should ever need to use them against another person.
The very highest masters of martial arts are the world’s most peaceful people. They never start fights, they never escalate violence, and if violence comes to them, they have the skills to end the violence without even causing harm to the instigator. That’s the true measure of a master: their ability to end violence without contributing to it. As a good example of this, you don’t see high level professional MMR fighters walking into bars and starting fights. They don’t need to prove anything in a bar fight, and if violence comes to them, they will END IT quickly and efficiently. Similarly, self-defense arts such as Krav Maga teach students to very quickly end violence so that violence does not escalate.
If only our police were taught these principles, we might have a chance of avoiding more eruptions of rioting and chaos across our cities. But I fear we are already too far gone. America has in many ways devolved into a nation of suspicion, aggression and cultural distrust. The burning of her cities is merely the inevitable result of cultural memes which have already been set into motion… and which almost certainly cannot be stopped until they play out.
My advice to Natural News readers is to become proficient in the physical arts of self-defense so that you can, if needed, contribute to the de-escalation of violence and the protection of the innocent. Start with Krav Maga if you want real hand-to-hand defense skills that can help de-escalate violence and even help prevent rapes. Krav is a favorite among women, and it is especially useful for rape prevention for the simple reason that no man can rape you after his balls have been forcefully relocated to the region near his tonsils…
Written by Mike Adams
Learn more: Natural News