This is the result when we stop remembering the proper roles for police, the military and the government.
The reason we have police is to uphold the laws of the land. That is, they are the instrument of force the State uses against its civilian population to maintain its monopoly on lawmaking within their territory. Basic, simple and clear, right?
The only legitimate role for a police force is to uphold the law – equally and without discrimination.
The only legitimate role for a police officer is to uphold the laws within the policing framework, and it is each individual officer’s personal responsibility to ensure they are not upholding the laws unequally or obeying illegal orders. This is essential because it is the front-line police officers who are the agents of the state within this: that is why they are the only ones who can safeguard this powerful force from corruption.
When exactly did the role of the police become re-defined from ‘enforcing the law of the land’ to ‘maintaining public peace’?
Because ‘maintaining public peace’ is not the same thing as ‘upholding the laws of the land’. If a crowd is upset by the presence of a witch, the easiest, most cost-effective course of action for someone ‘maintaining public peace’ is to simply burn the witch!
Most moral people would have a problem with this approach…
Yet, this is exactly what the OPP are doing in Caledonia: faced with an angry mob, they target the person the mob is angry at instead of maintaining order by upholding the laws of the land!
People who are willing to tolerate this approach to ‘maintaining peace’, who are ‘keeping their heads down’ in the conviction this will stop the mob from going after them should remember that in Eastern and Central Europe, the witch hunters sometimes killed every man, woman and child in a village they thought was infected with witchcraft.
The ‘peace of the tomb’ is not something our society ought to be striving for. Yet that is the logical result of the type of policing the OPP is practicing in Caledonia and many other places in Ontario!