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Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
3:22 AM Fri, Sept. 21st

Column: Wars and rumors of wars

No matter who or how many people try to deny it, the world is currently engaged in a war on terrorism. That is radical Islamic terrorism. Al Qaeda, ISIS and other radical Islamists, have declared war on us and other countries.

In the past year, Islamic terrorists have committed multiple murder attacks, such as those in Paris, Belgium, Istanbul and Nice. Add to that San Bernardino, California, and Orlando, Florida.

Our response to all terrorist attacks since President Obama took office, has been tepid, to say the least. The leader of our country has refused to use the words terrorism and Islam in the same sentence. His administration even called the Fort Hood massacre “workplace violence.”

Here in the United States, there is currently another war taking place. It is a war against law enforcement and the criminal justice system. This war is instigated by leftist anarchists in an attempt to put a wedge between the citizens and those who enact, enforce and execute our laws.

With the assassinations of police officers in New York, Dallas, Baton Rouge, and other locations, leftists and the organizations that they support and sponsor, have focused their hatred and animosity on law enforcement officers. Groups like Black Lives Matter and the New Black Panther Party have put a target on all police officers, sheriff’s deputies and highway patrolmen.

The rhetoric of the extremists is combustible for those who have a screw loose and have perceived grievances against our law enforcers. Words like “What do we want? Dead cops. When do we want them? Now” and “Pigs in a blanket, fry ‘em like bacon,” have inspired the crazies. So many on the left are such profound hypocrites. If one mentions crime and illegitimacy, the left starts hollering “racism.” If one brings up some indisputable fact or statistic, the left deems it “hate speech” or “micro-aggression.” They don’t attack the facts, they attack those who have the audacity to confront them with such awkward truths.

Here’s a clue for those less than sagacious: when you call for the death of a certain group of people, that is hate speech. When you refer to a group of people as farm animals and suggest that they should be fried, that’s not a micro-aggression, that is full-fledged, dehumanizing, MACRO-aggression. When has any progressive or person on the left condemned the words of the Black Lives Matter or the New Black Panther Party as “hate speech”?

Obama’s statements about police over the years have been less than supportive. He stated that the Cambridge police acted “stupidly.” He said that the “bias” in the Ferguson Police Department wasn’t isolated and called for “collective action and mobilization” against law enforcement. When a president speaks such incendiary words, it lends a sense of legitimacy in the minds of those who would commit atrocities against cops.

As far as police shootings go, the mainstream media has made a rabid return to the days of yellow journalism. “If it bleeds, it leads” is the rule of the day for much of the media, regardless of the truth and often by only investigating one side of a story. A prime example is the Michael Brown scenario that came out of Ferguson, Missouri. The media widely reported that Brown had his hands up and was yelling “Don’t Shoot” when a white police officer shot him. Witness’ statements alleging this, were in contravention of the physical evidence and even Eric Holder’s Justice Department could not indict the officer who shot Brown.

The phrase du jour for many of those commentators and pundits who support law enforcement, is that false accusations, and hateful palaver by anti-police groups, politicians and press produce a “false narrative.” I prefer to call them what they really are: damnable lies. What they produce is an atmosphere in which the unstable mind finds it acceptable to kill police officers.

In addition to the statements of politicians and reports from the yellow journalist, the catalyst for the ambush assassinations of the police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge would seem to be police shootings of armed black men in Baton Rouge and in Minnesota. On July 5, Alton Sterling was shot and killed by police officers after they received a call about a man with a gun. Sterling matched the description. When confronted, a fight ensued. A witness videoed the fight and the shooting. A gun was found on Sterling. He had an extensive arrest record that included violence for battery and aggravated battery, felon with a gun. He pleaded guilty to domestic violence battery, which in most jurisdictions would preclude him from legal possession of a gun.

Philando Castile was shot in Minnesota on July 7. Although, the shooting itself was not caught on video, the aftermath and his death was. Castile apparently did have a CCW permit. He had a minor arrest record and an extensive traffic violations record. He was in possession of a gun at the time of his death. From radio transmissions the officers thought that he matched the suspect in an armed robbery.

Both of these incidents need to be thoroughly investigated. They are not justifications for a war on police that took the lives of eight police officers this month and injured several others.

Buz Williams is a retired Long Beach, California, police officer who has lived in Prescott since 2004.