Law enforcement officers put their lives on the line daily to protect the public – regardless of race, religion, or gender. Sure, there are some bad apples, but those few aren’t the overwhelming majority. Yet the actions of these men and women are increasingly demonized by millennials. And it only gets worse as the trend grows – as more young people simply jump on what has become a popular bandwagon.
Student organizations are at the vanguard of this movement, and what used to be genuine concern over police brutality has rapidly degenerated into aggressive mudslinging.
The Autonomous Student Network (ASN) of the University of Texas at Austin, a popular anarcho-communist group, recently tweeted that Law Enforcement Appreciation Day should instead become celebrated as “Law Enforcement Incineration Day.” Included in the post was a picture of a French officer set afire after being struck by a Molotov cocktail during last year’s May Day protests against right-wing presidential candidate Marine LePen.
According to the goals listed on their Facebook page, the ASN holds aggressive stances against capitalist society encourages revolution through direct action, is opposed to peaceful protest, and actively seeks to “radicalize student activism.” It seems unlikely that they would accept an open public discussion regarding police practices since they reject such notions, as well as communication with those of differing viewpoints, as proclaimed on their Facebook page:
We see the state as integral to all forms of domination, as it provides a means for ruling classes to enforce their will and protect their power and enforces the ability to render individuals or entire populations disposable. We see police as an extension of this and refuse any negotiation with the cops…We refuse any negotiation with the current social order. We will not talk to police or invest in any politics that finds its endpoint in reformism and integration into this society and its systems of power.
This anti-intellectual, totalitarian refusal to engage in discussion displays a potentially dismal outlook for the country’s future. Exposure to various perspectives is necessary, as they may counteract radicalism and facilitate an open-minded public. Intellectually unstimulating environments stifle the growth of original ideas and innovation, and they encourage the perpetuation of possibly mistaken beliefs, according to the Brookings Institute.
Although it is easy to get caught up in the emotions of the violence proposed by ASN, let us consider the group’s view for a moment. They assert that cops wish to further a white supremacist patriarchal society, as displayed in their following post:
Most officers of various ethnicities are law-abiding citizens, serving people regardless of color. While ASN claims to represent minorities and the repressed, it also aims to “spread anarchy, live communism.” Ironically, the communist system is one that led to the deaths of about 100 million worldwide, many of whom were underrepresented individuals, according to Harvard University.
Battling the Myths
In contrast to widespread belief, most cops are not a significant part of the “power system” to which ASN refers. The average police salary is approximately $45,675 per year, a number below the average national wage of U.S. adults, as found by leading job site Indeed.com. Why would anyone settle for below average incomes while committing to life-endangering work? Each day, passionate officers do so to protect and serve the citizens of our diverse country.
One can only hope that the threats from ASN and similar organizations will not escalate into physical action. The greatest irony is the fact that, should the life of any ASN member become endangered, the first to respond and defend would be the police they so love to hate.
Liberty Nation reached out to ASN but was rudely refused any form any communication. So much for the “liberation” and “immediate social relationships” they claim to promote.