It's no secret that general respect for police officers has been going down in recent years. The American public still mostly looks up to them and respects them, but we don't trust them as much as we once did. As I've detailed here in other TGPS posts, they haven't been doing much to keep our trust.
And now, when citizens want to hold the public servants accountable, they label them "professional agitators."
Two citizens whose only "crime" is to film public servants, in public, performing a public duty and posting it to YouTube, were featured on posters made to look like "Wanted" posters by the NYPD. New York Police claim they are "professional agitators" who seek to portray the police in a negative light.
Which they probably are. So what? The police seem to believe that they should have carte blanche to behave however they want. They seem to believe that their very position puts them above reproach, and that anyone who attempts to criticize them or hold them accountable is acting to undermine their authority.
The truth is exactly the opposite. By holding them accountable, we let them know that they should be on their guard against "the very appearance of evil." By filming them and letting it be known that any bad behavior will find its way on YouTube, we let them know that, like any employee, their employer is watching them and expects the best, most ethical behavior.
The Police aren't interested in that, however. They believe they should be allowed to conduct themselves as they see fit. They should not be monitored and recorded, they believe, because... I'm really not sure, actually. My only guess would be they believe themselves to be elevated above the rest of the population, instead of servants to it.
This is how the Police State grows at "ground level." Certainly laws, policies, and constant spying are big things we can point to and say, "that's out of line." This is much more personal, and it should not be allowed to stand. The Police are not our masters, our bosses. The Police are our servants, and enjoy no privacy protections when they are in public doing their jobs. That they are afraid of what will show up on YouTube simply suggests they need to police themselves better and ensure better behavior. If there is no police misconduct, there will be no posted videos, will there?