Because one rotten apple eventually spoils the entire bunch.
Sorry, All Cops Are Bad Cops
There is no such thing as a good cop. The only good cops are former cops who quit their jobs because they knew the police and the criminal justice systems were rotten to the core, irretrievably broken, and unable to be repaired without being dismantled.
The only righteous cops are the ones who tried to tell on the bad ones but were fired because they violated the blue wall of silence.
The only good cops are the ones who turned up dead after doing the right thing and telling on fellow officers in the department because they broke the law. Apparently reporting human rights violations by police violates the blue wall of silence.
In policing, blue lives are the only lives that matter — to the police.
Other than the aforementioned scenarios, there is no such thing as a good cop.
Good cops remain silent about the indecent behavior of corrupt cops, making them complicit in wrongdoing. There are no saints in the barrel.
Rotten fruit always ruins good fruit. Sometimes rotting fruit can destroy an entire tree. It’s just how nature works.
Think about it. Leaving a rotting apple in the bag with good fruit eventually makes the others go bad. The same applies to the boys in black and blue. You can’t keep a good apple with rotten fruit and expect it to remain good.
The only reason one believes the police can be good is that that person has a loved one or friend employed in the field and these folks desire to separate that individual from the bad portions of corrupt people. For the good cop proponents, the label is personal and necessary to separate themselves because they know just like we do the police ain’t shit.
It’s human nature to defend what we love. Just because you do it doesn’t mean it’s right.
Good cop proponents refuse to look at the totality of a justice system that has proven time and time again to be rotten to its core. Instead of holding their loved ones accountable, they protect the boys in blue, becoming an outside wall of silence and protection making cleaning up the criminal justice system impossible.
How hard is it to find another job rather than be associated with a gang? It’s easy if you have integrity and aren’t power-hungry.
American police can’t be good because they weren’t created to protect and serve. They attempted to grow into this role. Racism and white supremacy stunted policing’s growth. Modern policing developed out of White men’s need to catch, enslave, destroy, and kill runaway slaves seeking freedom on behalf of plantation owners.
America’s policing is one of the original ways White people exercised their privilege to police Black bodies. Slave catching (also called slave patrols) entire purpose for existing was to ensure we are not free. If this wasn’t the intent, America’s police and sheriff’s departments wouldn’t spend so much time and resources in 2020 policing small populations of Black and Brown people when people who likely to commit the most crimes should come from the largest population.
White people don’t look at White people as criminals. White people see themselves as victims and in need of protection. Even when they commit crimes, they see themselves as deserving of second chances, leniency, grace, and mercy. These same people go into the criminal justice system and police with these same mindsets, influencing police of all races and ethnicities to believe likewise.
Since White people have run everything in America (since forever), policing reflects white gazes, white fears, white blindness, and implicit biases White people have held as truth for centuries. Our national policing strategies are biased and deeply flawed.
America’s policing is one of the original ways White people exercised their privilege to police Black bodies. Policing’s entire purpose for existing is to ensure we are not free. If this wasn’t the intent, the police wouldn’t spend so much time and resources policing such small populations of Black and Brown people when most criminals should come from the largest population of people, White people.
If there are more White people than Black people, shouldn’t there be more White people incarcerated than Blacks? There are more White people in power because there are more racist White people in America, but more Black people in jail because there are more racist White people working to put them there with the help of people of color.
Policing is racist, and the police are racist. How do you find good in that shit stew? You don’t.
My Personal Experiences With Police
I know law enforcement officials, employed and retired, at both the local and federal. I have listened to them talk about rotten apples. I have heard some of their horror stories, and sat fuming because they all have witnessed wrongdoing, abuses, etc. and said nothing to keep their jobs, their pensions, and peace with their corrupt band of brothers. They’ve tried to convince me they were good too as if I don’t have common-sense to see the system for what it really is.
They all have been brainwashed into believing they somehow are honorable people.
When I ask them why they expect civilians to do the right thing but they don’t have to… — I get crickets and lame ass excuses. My favorite line of all after a good Marley K interrogation is “those are my brothers and sisters” I know it’s not right, that just how it is. The blue wall is an actual thing, and wrong.
I lose a little more respect for them each time we talk, especially as the nation sees policing for what it truly is. It’s impossible to be seen as human when you work in a career field where your job is to treat certain groups inhumanely based on race and supported by biases.
Every time my Black friends and associates in law enforcement have discussions about police brutality, unjustified killings, the police’s knack for violating/not knowing our civil rights, they all do the “not wanting to take responsibility for the past” shuffle. What’s good?
I dread watching the horrific videos with my delusional friends. I’m forced to listen to their propaganda. They always believe the victims of police brutality did something wrong and deserved his/her fate. I’m always astounded at how quickly the rights and policy go out the window when police are engaged in misconduct. They stick up for each other unless the offense is super egregious.
When my friends and associates can no longer defend their positions, they go back to their favorite two excuses every single time, which is:
1) They are trained in the police academy to kill when they believe they are in danger (they may kill us based upon flawed prediction data), and
2) It’s hard being on the streets, you never know what someone will do and we all are just trying to get back home to our families (the old “I’m scared of people” defense).
When officers wear that uniform, they’ve already determined that they are going home and we civilians are not. They have the license and authority to kill any of us if they feel threatened, even if there is no actual threat at all. They can just say it and they get immunity. What’s good about this?
This means a White man’s explicit or implicit biases can get Black and Brown people killed and it’s completely justified. This means so-called good White, Black, and Brown cops must help them conceal the misdeeds of bad cops because of those implicit biases. This means scary-assed White cops can draw their weapons and fire just for the fun of it or because their parents raised him or her in lily White settings to be afraid of Black and Brown people. These cops get a, “I feared for my life” waiver.
This means good cops get the same graces and forgiveness as bad cops. How are we able to tell them apart?
Anyone who remains working in the criminal justice system already knows it’s irretrievably broken. People stay in the field because they love power and they enjoy their paychecks. Period.
Good Cops Are Accessories and Accomplices
So-called good cops stay and become accomplices to crimes and accessories after the fact — facts that until recently were rarely proven. Thanks to cellphone footage and body camera (when operational), we can now see what goes on behind the blue wall.
The rest of the world is seeing what Black folks have been telling them for hundreds of years. All cops are bad.
Good cops see abuse — sometimes they may even stop it. They know about the physical and sexual assaults. They hear the racial slurs. They understand terrible cops are willfully in violation of our rights and yet they don’t leave; instead they stay silent, allowing corrupt police to harm hundreds if not thousands of victims. Instead of being the change we need, they become accomplices.
Good cops are accomplices to the crimes of bad cops. The act as accessories before and after the fact.
Good cops don’t tell on each other because when they do — they are punished by their fellow gang members.
Good cops stay on code.
Good cops see nothing, say nothing.
Good cops remember nothing because — all police careers matter.
Good cops are like “good” White people.
The few good White people are invisible and rendered useless because the bad and wilfully ignorant White people are so plentiful. The sympathetic White people stay joined to the corrupt and racist White people because there is a tangible benefit to tolerating the bad. Good White people also fear the bad White mobs. Their fear causes them to align themselves with the ranks of the bad, making conditions unbearable for us. Is this good, or does it sound cowardly?
The best example of a good cop I’ve ever seen portrayed was in the movie Rosewood directed by the late John Singleton.
The White mobs throughout Singleton’s movie showed how good, principled White people flip-flopped between being a savior and being our oppressor. They’d help save Blacks, then work alongside with those hurting the Blacks because the kind White people didn’t want to be ostracized or bullied by the violent White mob.
Good folks had to join the mob or suffer the same consequences as the Black victims. The approval of the peers is more important than doing the right thing. While it may be real life, how does this make one a good person?
This insane dynamic is exactly what policing is like. Good cops become bad cops when necessary to save his or her own ass.
You Can’t Be Good If You Stay With Rot
So-called good cops remain in policing because of the proximity to White Supremacy, financial benefits, the privilege to be assholes legally with no punishment, and they enjoy doing the dirty work the governments want done.
There is no such thing as good cops, including those who stayed around long enough to retire. No cop can remain on the job long enough to retire without seeing or doing wrong. None can honestly say they haven’t been exposed to racism either. If they say otherwise, they are a liar and the truth isn’t in them.
When a so-called good cop witnesses police wrongdoing and cannot do the right thing, they become an accomplice to the crime. Period. Holding that information and not reporting it makes them accessories after the fact.
Blue lies don’t matter and I will never believe policing in America can we can reform policing with just a few new laws and policies because bad apples in a rotten system can’t create anything but bad cops resulting in bad outcomes.
You cannot legislate hate and racism. Hate starts at home and in communities. Thinking you can put laws in place to stop narcissists, sociopaths, and racists is foolish thinking. People looking for an easy way out and people too ignorant to comprehend the complexities of our systems are the only ones who believe you can weed out the bad cops from a rotten system and get different results. That’s insanity.
Rotten apples taint good ones.
When will America rethink justice and policing? When are we going to stop protecting bad cops and hold all of them accountable? When will we unpack and finally dismantle our racist justice systems? Nothing good can come from it in its current state.
America has no plans to deconstruct our racist, corrupt, third-world country criminal justice system. Therefore, there can be no good cops employed in it. Defunding is a start, but it’s not the solution because it doesn’t deal with racism or the flawed data used to predict the behavior of Black and Brown folks. Those flawed predictions are used by good cops.
It’s impossible for a good apple to not be exposed to rot if it remains next to rotten apples. The only way to save good apples is to remove good apples to a new space away from the bad ones or discard the rotten apples all together to protect the good ones.
That never happens in policing. In America, we think we can train the devil away.
Policing is a constant recycling of bad cops and high ups which taints the entire system. Corrupt cops are saved repeatedly, even when they don’t deserve redemption. Good cops work alongside the corrupt cops, pretending they don’t know who the cops are bad.
Police unions and cops together fight to ensure corrupt cops stay employed, ensuring the rancid, rotten system doesn’t change. It’s impossible to disassociate oneself from the brothers in blue unless you quit because you understand the joint is rotten or fired for doing the right thing.
Reading Christopher Dorner’s manifesto brought that all home to me. It was impossible for him to do the right thing. When Dorner reported cases of police abuse, corruption, and racism, he was punished, severely.
While I disapprove of his handling of being punished for doing the right thing, Dorner’s letter proved how rotten the police truly are and how little power good cops have. Dorner thought he was joining the force to do good and to help his community. What he discovered was that he had joined a rogue gang. There was no good in that system. It was rotten to its core. The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) dismissed his petitions and said his complaints against his former fellow officers and the department itself were self-serving.
They basically called the brother a liar. That’s being a good cop gets you.
The police time and time again dismiss good cops to protect the bad ones. The system leaves good people with very few resolutions. Former officer’s like Dorner believe retaliation is the only justice. You can’t be good and stay on the force.
There is no honor among thieves. You can’t “not all police are bad” your way into heaven.
About Those Black and Brown Slave Patrollers
I don’t believe there is such a thing as a good cop unless they fall into one of the three aforementioned categories I noted earlier; I don’t care what race or ethnicity you are.
While I expect White cops to behave the way they act while policing (see slave catcher, slave patrols, and the history of policing in America), I’m always shocked at the number of Black and Brown folks who go into policing and behave like the White mob. I’m often confused by their decision to work in a system that controlled Black bodies to death. It’s pretty fucked.
It’s a much-needed discussion for another day. Listen to the explanation below.
While I realize there are some decent people who join police forces because they want to make a difference, at some point, they all learn there is no real way to make a difference in a system that is inherently bad.
The decent people stay in the bad system, anyway. You cannot remain good in a rotten system and remain well.
They stay because they love the paycheck and job security. Policing also comes with a lot of perks that civilians aren’t entitled to.
If good cops thought their working conditions were poor, they’d leave like the rest of us when we hate our jobs or intolerable people at those jobs make our workplaces unbearable.
It’s financially beneficial to stay in the gang.
Making excuses for all cops is like saying not all White people are racist. Our criminal justice system is inherently bad, and it won’t change until White people stop denying it, tear it down, and build it back up. As long as the system is unfair and corrupt, no good can come from it.
If your dog is infested with fleas, you’re bound to have an infestation.
If cops are working in law enforcement today, they work for a no-good, dirty, low-down, rotten system. If they desire to be perceived as good, they better get into another line of work. Policing and White Supremacy are inter-connected, joined at the hip, wedded unhappily ever after — until they are not.
The state of the criminal justice system in America needs to have a reckoning, and this is one of the many areas of housekeeping White people must tend to in order to move us forward. You created the police. You support the police. Your tax dollars pay the police. It’s up to White people to dismantle the current institution of policing and to create a system that allows good cops to do what good cops should do — protect and serve all the people equally.
I have my hammer on standby, I’m waiting on White people to lead the charge.
White people, you must stop raising scary little White boys, who grow up to become scary White men ready to draw guns and beat non-White men because it has taught them that non-White equate to dangerous. You help create bad cops.
Stop suggesting policing is good a job for your scary and racist kids. They should work in the bread store or someplace like Starbucks where they can feel safe and earn a paycheck because clearly policing ain’t for a lot of White men.
In order for good cops to be employed in policing, White and Black people must create a new criminal justice system that polices us fairly, free of biases, with predictive data gathered from fair policing. Since this has never happened in our nation’s history, we need a do-over.
As for the Black and Brown brothers in blue, they are working as tools and pillars propping up White Supremacy, keeping it alive. I often wonder how they sleep at night. No one sane, decent, Black person or a person of color armed with the knowledge of how our criminal justice system came into existence would take an oath to protect and serve White Supremacy — the slave catcher. The overseer.
Over the past few months, the picture can’t get any clearer. There are a lot of bad people in policing.
And while there may be a bunch of bad cops working the streets, and there are the other bad cops watching the bad apples quietly in their squad cars, walking with them on foot patrols, changing in the locker rooms, and listening to them in police training. Those so-called good cops know these animals are violating the civil rights and liberties of our children, brothers, sisters, fathers, sons, mothers, and they say nothing.
Good cops are the bad cops lucky enough to escape detection, savvy enough to avoid getting their dirt recorded, smart enough to write up reports that don’t highlight their misdeeds, scared enough to save their own asses, and quiet enough to not rock any boats.
There. Are. No. Good. Cops.
We must stop protecting the blue wall from the outside because we reap some personal benefit from it. There is nothing good about being a police officer in America. It’s a job — a bad one.
Let’s just stop ignoring and normalizing bad people, corrupt systems, and bad policing because it pays your mortgage or you like the perks that come from having a badge. Doing so makes you a part of the problem. Your partiality and unwillingness to call out all police give cover to the real problems — racist systems, racist policies, and racist/corrupt officers.
There is no such thing as a good cop or a good system in America. They are all tainted. Most are rotten. Everything about America’s systems is rotten to the core, including all the police.
Because one rotten apple spoils the entire bunch.
Marley K. in Quarantine 2020
For more information on bad policing in America: