James Fallows has a good round-up of news on the pepper spraying cop. He was caught on video doing the same thing to yet another protester, in clear violation of the NYC’s rules on the use of pepper spray, and the story is getting big play worldwide.
What’s interesting to me is how a protest designed to draw attention to the disparity in wealth between Wall Street millionaires and the rest of us, as well as the injustice of the bank bailout, has morphed into a conversation about police overreach. We’re like a big dysfunctional family that never deals with any of our problems, and when today’s problem gets us a little agitated, we latch on to one minor detail that’s related to some other festering sore in our collective psyche and use that to distract ourselves.
Now that we have our distraction, it’s time to burn someone at the stake. Instead of having a discussion about our tolerance and even celebration of brutal cops, para-military no-knock raids, and expensive, pointless security theater, we’re going to drill in on this one asshole who maced a few protesters and get him fired. Once that happens, we’ll go back to forgetting about the elephant in the room.