Isn’t It Enough You Aren’t In Jail?

Like the Wall Street brokers who trashed the country with their recklessness but still demanded we be in awe of them and respect their feelings, it seems that police want the right to murder with impunity and still be worshiped by polite society. Anything less, and the whining begins in earnest:

The president of the police union in Cleveland, Ohio, said over the weekend the “Justice for Tamir Rice” shirt worn by football player Andrew Hawkins was “pathetic.”

Hawkins, a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns, dressed in a shirt that read, “Justice for Tamir Rice and John Crawford” on the front, and “The Real Battle for Ohio” on the back, during pre-game warm-ups on Sunday. Twelve-year-old Rice was shot by police outside of a recreation center in Cleveland on Nov. 22 for holding what was later determined to be a toy “airsoft” gun. Crawford, 22, was fatally shot by police for carrying a toy gun inside an Ohio Wal-Mart in August.

Jeff Follmer, president of the Cleveland police union, reportedly said that Hawkins’ shirt was disrespectful, and demanded an apology from the football team.

“It’s pretty pathetic when athletes think they know the law. They should stick to what they know best on the field. The Cleveland Police protect and serve the Browns stadium and the Browns organization owes us an apology,” Follmer wrote to a local ABC News affiliate. The police union didn’t immediately respond to msnbc’s request for comment.

The Browns responded, saying that management respects both the Cleveland Police Department and NFL players’ rights to support certain causes.

This loudmouth meathead is speaking on behalf of the very same Cleveland Police Department that gunned down a 12 year old and was cited by the Justice Department for being an insane clown posse with actual circular firing squads of innocent people, among multiple other crimes and transgressions too numerous to count.

Meanwhile in NYC, New York’s “Finest” continues their wankfest/whinefest, with Patrick Lynch, still feeling misty eyed about the cold shoulder people are giving cops after they were caught on tape murdering Eric Garner, has decided to up the cop douchebaggery a notch:

New York City’s police union, the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, is urging its members to ban Mayor Bill de Blasio from their funerals, the latest episode in the ongoing clash between the mayor and the city’s law-enforcement power structure.

Officers are encouraged to fill out a form on the union’s website titled “Don’t Insult My Sacrifice” to request that neither de Blasio nor Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito attend their funeral, should they be killed in the line of duty.

The form reads:

I, _____________________, as a New York City police officer, request that Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito refrain from attending my funeral services in the event that I am killed in the line of duty. Due to Mayor de Blasio and Speaker Mark-Viverito’s consistent refusal to show police officers the support and respect they deserve, I believe that their attendance at the funeral of a fallen New York City police officer is an insult to that officer’s memory and sacrifice.

For months, PBA President Patrick Lynch has complained about what he views as insufficient support from the mayor, particularly after the July 17 death of Eric Garner, who died after NYPD officers put him in a chokehold. In the wake of the incident, de Blasio recounted telling his 17-year-old biracial son, Dante, about the need to be careful around police officers. Lynch accused de Blasio of “stirring the emotions of the street” and throwing officers “under the bus.”

Man, fuck these guys. Just do your goddamned job and stop killing innocent people. How fucking hard is that? And spare me the bullshit about how dangerous your job is:

In 2013, out of 900,000 sworn officers, just 100 died from a job-related injury. That’s about 11.1 per 100,000, or a rate of 0.01%.

Policing doesn’t even make it into the top 10 most dangerous American professions. Logging has a fatality rate 11 times higher, at 127.8 per 100,000. Fishing: 117 per 100,000. Pilot/flight engineer: 53.4 per 100,000. It’s twice as dangerous to be a truck driver as a cop—at 22.1 per 100,000.

Another point to bear in mind is that not all officer fatalities are homicides. Out of the 100 deaths in 2013, 31 were shot, 11 were struck by a vehicle, 2 were stabbed, and 1 died in a “bomb-related incident.” Other causes of death were: aircraft accident (1), automobile accident (28), motorcycle accident (4), falling (6), drowning (2), electrocution (1), and job-related illness (13).

Even assuming that half these deaths were homicides, policing would have a murder rate of 5.55 per 100,000, comparable to the average murder rate of U.S. cities: 5.6 per 100,000. It’s more dangerous to live in Baltimore (35.01 murders per 100,000 residents) than to be a cop in 2014.

Oddly enough, when loggers, fishermen, pilots, roofers, and garbage collectors commit murder, we arrest and prosecute them, and they don’t take to the media demanding a tongue bath from the public and the mayor. So just stfu. I’m sick of it.

This whining is enough to make you want to write a song.

67 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    I respect people’s rights to decide they don’t want a particular public official at their funeral.

  2. 2
    Felonius Monk says:

    Here is another recent fatal case — right on my doorstep.

  3. 3
    dmsilev says:

    You forgot the asshole in Saint Louis who went after local NFL players there after said players had the temerity to register their displeasure with how the police dealt with the whole Ferguson …thing.

  4. 4
    TheHalfrican says:

    I’m a very strong believer in unions……except Police Unions. Fuck them up the ass. These guys think they’re gods.

    If it makes you feel any better, the Right has been slowly getting tired of the cops bullshit too. Just look at any controversial case *not* involving a black guy. Free Republic used to be 100% pro-cop, now its more like 40%……..that pig who shot the white kid armed with a Wiimote got off too btw.

  5. 5
    cckids says:

    Follmer is on Chris Hayes right now, and he is even more of an asshole in person than that statement shows. He keeps insisting that there was no other possible outcome than that cop shooting Tamir Rice dead. “The young man brought about his own death through his actions”.

    What an utterly despicable human being. The butthurt about the “insult” counts for so, so, SO much more than Tamir’s life. Whoever the dude is who is sitting in for Hayes is WAY too polite about this crap.

  6. 6
    Judge Crater says:

    The only apology the Browns should make is to their fans after the decision to start Johnny Manziel at quarterback on Sunday.

    Another first round draft choice squandered on a lousy quarterback. The “Dog Pound” mourns another slap in the face.

    The Cleveland cops are apparently as incompetent as the Browns front office.

  7. 7
    scav says:

    To clarify, I utterly respect and appreciate every police officer that protects and serves all of us with honesty, integrity and the right way. And I don’t think those kind of officers should be offended by what I did.

    Andrew Hawkins

    to post the obvious.

    Speaking of jobs that also serve the public, imagine if waitstaff behaved with the decorum, self-control, professional standards and sense of entitlement of police officers. Hello, I’m Darren and I’ll be your server tonight. What do you mean you didn’t order the spit on your salad dressing?! On your knees and admit this fucking plate is not only what you ordered but what you fucking deserve thug! Little cold you say? Let me warm it with my taser here oh I missed. By the by, the restaurant is running a little behind in profit tonight, so we’re making up revenue by mandating everyone order the one-for-two dessert special tonight. Tip. Now.

  8. 8
    Trentrunner says:

    Follmer was just on All In. What a spectacular assholish thug he is: “Just do what da police tell ya, and dere won’t be no problem.”

  9. 9
    JPL says:

    Yup this is just proof that it’s teachers unions that are the problem.

  10. 10
    mouse tolliver says:

    Just saw this asshole get interviewed by Ari Melber on All In. First, Melber went way too easy on him. This Nazi cop kept referring to Tamir Rice as “the male” and suggested that both he and John Crawford were armed and the cops lives were in danger. He finished the interview by saying when a cop gives you an order you better listen otherwise… Never mind that the killer cops in both cases shot first without giving either one of them a chance to comply with an order much less an order to comply with. My blood is boiling right now.

    And he sounded like an idiot too which is scary.

  11. 11
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    I just love it when our bloghost goes on a rant like this. It is truly righteous.

  12. 12
    JPL says:

    OT.. I have to interrupt this very important post to ask a question. After years of dating and living together, my son has finally proposed to his significant other. I need two bottles of champagne for xmas eve. Is there a decent champagne for about fifty or sixty dollars?

  13. 13
    Baud says:



  14. 14
    Linnaeus says:


    I need two bottles of champagne for xmas eve. Is there a decent champagne for about fifty or sixty dollars?

    You can get Taittinger or Veuve Clicquot for around $50 or even under that.

  15. 15
    Mike J says:

    As slacktivist pointed out, the Cleveland PD came out publicly as being against justice, something should define their job.

  16. 16
    rikyrah says:



    I have no alcohol suggestions

  17. 17
    lamh36 says:

    @cckids: that was Ari Melber. I refused to watch the interview the police dude.

    All in did show the video of Andrew Hawkins statement on why he wore the shirt and it’s even more powerful than the written statement.

    When he talked about his son…

    The video is what that Cleveland PD dude followed.

  18. 18
    Stacy says:

    Heard the interview too. Melber did well but I wanted to hit him on his “the male” stuff too. If this is the best Cleveland had no wonder the poor kid is dead. I kept thinking “who does this guy think he is?” How do these people have jobs?

  19. 19
    joel hanes says:

    Respect must be earned

    When people demand respect, give them integrity.

    When people demonstrate integrity, give them respect.

  20. 20
    Mike S says:

    I put this at the end of the thread below but it fits much better here The witness 40 that Betty Cracker wrote about a while ago has been identified publicly. It is a known crazy person with a long record to turning up with “information” after notorious crimes. And the DA put her on the Grand Jury wittiness stand anyway. I wish I could say I was shocked by this “incompetence” he displayed!

  21. 21
    Linnaeus says:

    @Mike S:

    I’m shocked, shocked to find that jury rigging is going on here!

  22. 22
    JPL says:

    @rikyrah: Truth be known, I just had the feeling that they were going to be engaged last spring and purchased a really expensive bottle of champagne. When that didn’t happen, I had a nice brunch for a friends sixtieth birthday and we drank it. It was good.

  23. 23
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    In related news today one of our famous disgraced cops was back in court

    cops are not angels, and it is high time that we stopped claiming they are.

  24. 24
    lamh36 says:

    Count me as someone who thinks Ari Melber went too damn easy on the PD dude. Then again, I don’t suspect that Chris Hayes would have done any better. I’ve seen him do interviews like this and it wasn’t great for Hayes. Someone like Maddow, Schultz or even Lawrence O’Donnell would have pushed back more.

    Micheal Steele and Micheal E Dyson were the next segment to respond to what the PD dude said.

    You could see it on their faces, Steele and especially Mike Dyson (he appeared to be almost seething) were disturbed by that PD dude.

    The bastard couldn’t even say Tamir Rice’s name…”The male”…fuck that dude.

  25. 25
    Barney says:

    The same goes for Dick Cheney, Proud Torturer, who calls anything daring to question if it was OK for him to order the rape of detainees ‘full of crap’.

  26. 26
    lamh36 says:

    Another Brown’s player’s statement:

    Why I Wore the Shirt
    Cleveland Browns

    The NFL wants to make players’ public lives conform to its standards. But when exceptional issues call for us to speak our minds, the league and the fans need to see us as men, with our own opinions and the freedom to express them

  27. 27
    JPL says:

    Police unions are giving unions a bad name. Scott Walker knew what he was doing to screw the teachers and support the unions.

  28. 28
    Steeplejack says:


    I would second Linnaeus on the Veuve Clicquot. It’s good, plus it has name/label recognition with people who aren’t wine/champagne connoisseurs (if that’s of interest). I got some at Total Wine last month for $44 a bottle.

  29. 29
    Baud says:


    Some libertarian idiot on Reddit was praising Walker for going after unions in a post that was about police brutality, completely ignoring that Walker did not go after price unions.

  30. 30
    raven says:

    Jesus the only good thing about this game is, even though the Bears are fucking awful, I think the Falcons can beat that almost as awful Aints.

  31. 31
    Baud says:


    It’s worse than high school football.

  32. 32
    Sibelius says:

    @JPL: Order of preference for me: Louis Roederer Brut, Bollinger Special Cuvee, Charles Heidsiek NV Brut, or Tattinger; can’t go wrong with any of them. All between $45 – 60ish here. I’ll be buying a couple myself for New Years and to celebrate my oldest’s 8th birthday. Mommy and Daddy always get a good champagne to celebrate our girls birthdays’. Someday soon they might get to join in!


  33. 33
    raven says:

    @Baud: 10 men on a fake punt!!!!!

    eta I watched my friend’s grandson’s team win the state championship Saturday and they played better. Ralph David Abernathy’s grandson was on the opposition! Heck of a player.

  34. 34
    Baud says:


    Yeah, I lost it there.

  35. 35
    Linnaeus says:


    The thing is, the people who really despise unions, especially (but not limited to) public sector unions, tend to be the same kind of folks who generally defend the police. Walker exempted the police and fire unions from Act 10 because he knew that those weren’t the unions that his supporters really wanted him to go after. Plus many of those unions probably supported him.

  36. 36
    JPL says:

    @Sibelius: tomorrow i’m going to costco to see what they have. Thanks.

  37. 37
    Baud says:


    I get that. But the Reddit fool was praising Walker for union busting in a post where, like this one, people were complaining about police unions.

  38. 38
    Steeplejack says:


    I presume you are eagerly awaiting Thursday’s game: Titans (2-12) vs. Jaguars (2-12) in a slugfest for the bottom of the AFC South. Must-see TV.

  39. 39
    lamh36 says:

    The Selma cast wore “I Can’t Breathe” shirts to their premiere

  40. 40
    raven says:

    @Steeplejack: Really the NFL has become background for me this year.

  41. 41
    JPL says:

    @Linnaeus: Although you are right, the best and brightest are going to have teachers that care. That will be our future. I was appalled that Walker went after the teachers.

  42. 42
    Linnaeus says:


    Oh, I know. The fool just didn’t get why Walker was doing what he was doing.

  43. 43
    Baud says:


    But tonight we have Gruden!


    Me too.

  44. 44
    Linnaeus says:


    I was appalled, too. But, sadly, not surprised. They see their chance and they’re going in for the kill. Everywhere in this country.

  45. 45
    Steeplejack says:


    I don’t judge. LOL. I just checked the listings yesterday and was horrified.

  46. 46
    raven says:

    @Steeplejack: Yea, I mean as a life long Bear fan and having an interest in the Falcons fate this game has SOME meaning. Thursday, nahhhhhhhh. Now to the DVR and bed.

  47. 47
    Tree With Water says:

    There’s a Simpson’s episode in which Homer feels like a king because a TV show had introduced a super cool character named Homer Simpson. Well, cop shows and their cop heroes have been the main staple of TV networks for at least 40 years. Can it be that today’s police have fallen prey to mistaking who they are with who TV tells them they are? Be that as it may, things become very dangerous when king shit cops begin insisting the policed kiss their ass. The Cleveland and NY police departments are stupidly throwing down a gauntlet, almost begging it be picked up. And it will be, if they don’t knock that shit off.

  48. 48
    pluege says:

    bottom line is, the cops who are whining and their booster sycophants have no respect for life – a very dangerous situation to have such people armed with a limitless license to kill.

  49. 49
    Heliopause says:

    Forget the union guys, they’re just doing what unions do. What needs to happen is for the bureaucrats who hire these sociopaths to face serious jail time the next time an incompetent cop shoots a 12 year old.

    Needless to say, that won’t happen in America, but it’s what needs to happen.

  50. 50
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Linnaeus: I am a Bollinger guy; a non-vintage Bolly should be available in the same range.

  51. 51
    Ripley says:

    @lamh36: Very cool, this is spreading. The twitter comments, though, are a mixed bag. Some are fucking atrocious, so fair warning.

  52. 52
    Les Nessman says:

    Yeah Baby! Amerikkka! Na kaleni, suka.

  53. 53
    Linnaeus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Well, I wouldn’t turn down a Bolly if it were offered to me.

  54. 54
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Linnaeus: Who would?

  55. 55
    Wag says:


    I would third the recommendation. Excellent drink and a distinctive label

  56. 56
  57. 57
    Sherparick says:

    A pretty good article in Jacobin on why Police and Prison Guard Unions are not always such a good idea. As we have seen the last six months, they are bastions of authoritarianism, white privilege, and the Conservative Movement.

    “Such is the inherent defect of law-enforcement unionism: It’s peopled by those with a material interest in maintaining and enlarging the state’s most indefensible practices.”

  58. 58
    Sherparick says:

    While Faux News and the NeoConfederate Torture Party are all celebrating the nut case in Australia as vindication for torture “because,” this was happening in Pennsylvania. Of course it is very sad that two people died and the City of Sidney was subjected to “Dog Days Afternoon event.” . However, in the “safe and secured good ol’ USA (because of torture and the courageous He-men willing to torture), a former Commander of the local American Legion Post decided to go all Rambo on his ex-wife and her relatives, killing six as opposed to the two dead in Australia, and terrorizing the Philadelphia suburbs to boot. On the same day 47 of the NeoConfederate Torture Party (and one renegade Democrat (West Virginia, of course) Senators voted against the new Surgeon General nominee because he mentioned that guns in the U.S. are bit of a public health problem. “The Horror, the Horror.”

  59. 59
    Mayur says:

    @JPL: veuve is coasting on its rep from back when they made decent wine thirty years ago.

    Depends on where you live; if you have access to good grower champagnes I woud get something from diebolt-vallois, Andre clouet, gimmonet, or Beaufort. You can even get reserve, vintage, and rose wines from these producers in the $50-60 range.

    Otherwise, second the recs for bollinger special cuvée or tattinger nv reserve.

  60. 60
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Sherparick: You do know that the shooter in PA was White, right? Of course, Faux Noise isn’t going to make a fuss about him.

  61. 61
    Emily68 says:

    I would have thought that “Justice for Tamir Rice” is something everyone could agree on. Some would think that justice would involve putting the cop in jail. Others would think justice would involve giving the cop a medal. Just like even Liz Cheney and I would agree that Dick Cheney should get what he deserves.

  62. 62

    You do know that the shooter in PA was White, right?

    @Patricia Kayden: Well, shit, no wonder Fox didn’t cover it, that’s not a crime, he was just celebrating his Only Amendment rights.

  63. 63
    MCA1 says:

    What cops have failed to notice, rhetorically, is that more and more folks actively disagree with their opening statement of “99% of police are good, honest, hardworking everyday heroes.” Belief in that doesn’t survive a citizen’s first contact with a lot of cops in any large city or other area with a militarized PD. We’ve started assuming there’s a significant percentage of fascist assholes with a god complex in the force. Once you’ve lost that baseline assumption, that it’s just a couple bad apples out there but most officers are TV heroes, you’ve got a problem, and that’s where we are now. People not only have stopped venerating cops the way they used to, they’ve started resenting the demands for veneration because they’re not being presented any evidence that it’s warranted. We’re at that point right now, where cops haven’t adjusted their expectations to get in line with the way the public sees them (as evidenced any time there’s another illegal confiscation of someone’s smartphone for filming a police/citizen interraction – cop, oblivious to or resentful of how much public trust in cops has been eroded in recent years, ends up reinforcing the very same break in trust).

    I think more and more people have awoken to the fact that, no, actually, far too many cops are NOT noticeably better people than the rest of us, and they’re not more honorable than others categorically, and all too many of them are prone to making mistakes and overreacting to petty shit, and escalating situations instead of defusing them. And they’re being trained to overreact and escalate, instead of SERVE and PROTECT. They spend their time inside a network that circles the wagons any time anyone fucks up, and relentlessly reinforces an us-against-them mentality and a culture of extreme loyalty. It’s that culture that’s a big part of the problem. Which is depressing, because I don’t know how you break it. But a citizenry that sees the police as simply civil servants with a more dangerous job than most civil servants (and with pay and pensions commensurate with that) would be a good start. If we stop putting them on a pedestal, maybe they’ll stop feeling entitled to that pedestal.

  64. 64
    Aaron Evan Baker says:

    Follmer, this ambulatory bottle of pond scum, took his act on Chris Hayes’ show last night and outdid himself by blaming Tamir Rice and his family for causing the copper to shoot him. He repeatedly called a twelve-year old boy “the male” and said the officer who shot him thought he was twenty–if that wasn’t the boy’s fault I don’t know what could be. Rice’s parents clearly hadn’t schooled him in proper obedience to a policeman’s orders. Follmer also repeatedly said that the video of the killing showed the officers were justified, which leads me to suspect that Follmer just doesn’t see what normal people do when he looks at it.

    I also note that at least one other poster has seen, and been horrified by, last night’s abomination. Don’t watch it if you think you might throw something at the screen.

  65. 65
    My Truth Hurts says:

    What pisses me off the most about these bullying thugs is that honest open and critical discussion benefits all of us including the cops. Like John says, don’t kill people and be an asshole about it and maybe the public will stop hating them. If we could trust the cops we would be nicer to them and maybe they’d stop being thin skinned self pitying babies.

  66. 66
    The Other Chuck says:

    I wish someone would have told Follmer at least once, “Hey “the male” has a name.”

  67. 67
    Aaron Evan Baker says:

    “I wish someone would have told Follmer at least once, “Hey “the male” has a name.””

    God yes. The sheer callousness of this prick (think of the parents reading or hearing his remarks) just . . . just astounded me. I just don’t have any more words for it.

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