Ask A Cop

Share this:Share on Facebook0Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+0Pin on Pinterest0

The Cop weighs in on recent police confrontation controversies. Illustration: Sean Hennefer

Dear Orificer,

I’m pretty sure I know where you stand with the Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, etc. issue. I imagine that you are on the cops’ (or security guards’) sides in these matters. I am against the decisions to vindicate cops like Darren Wilson who, whether it was “justified” in the eyes of the law or not, killed people with firearms—or by other means, as with Eric Garner. I have a 19-year-old brother, who, in the eyes of the law may be an adult, but I know that he is still a kid who makes mistakes and is figuring “it all” out. Kids think they’re invincible, and regardless of whether Michael Brown was as “Hulk Hogan”–esque as Darren Wilson made him out to be, he was still a kid; he’s dead, and although my brother is by no means 6’4” or 292 lbs. or black, all I can see is someone’s brother who was murdered. Here’s my question: Why are cops still using weapons and tactics that kill people? Why not implement a weapon that stuns them without a potential for death? Humankind can land a probe on a fucking comet, but law enforcement can’t figure out how to detain someone without taking their lives and ruining those of their families and uphold the peace they purport to defend?

–Lizardhand Gomorrah

P.S. After Trayvon Martin, if I were Michael Brown, I wouldn’t have complied with Darren Wilson either. From Watts to Ferguson, the police have made it clear that they’re to be considered an enemy—not one as blatant as ISIS, but a more nebulously insidious foe.

Mr. Lizard,

To answer your questions, #1 – Cops use weapons and tactics that “stop” people from their criminal intent; #2 – It’s called a taser, and people still die after being tasered; #3 – Seriously, you’re relating the scientific accomplishment of comet landing to natural, human, criminal-vs.-cop interaction? Idiot.

The rest of your sentiment I’ll comment as follows, and you mentioned families:

Eric Tyrone Smith – End Of Watch July 7, 2013 – He was a twin. He was a United States Marine. He and his TWIN brother were raised by a special mother whom loved Eric A LOT. He was quite possibly one of the smartest cops to have existed on this planet, EVER. He had sons, Eric Smith Jr. and Quentin, who he loved more than life. So, where the FUCK were you (and Al Sharpton) and your diatribe when he was shot down, with his own gun, by some murdering criminal piece of shit?

And …

Rodney Renee Thomas – End of Watch April 4, 2013 – He sang in his church choir. His passion for fishing was unequaled. He had a son, Rodney Thomas II. There was an accident one night, and he got out of his car and made sure everyone was OK. He even put on his reflective vest for safety. Some piece-of-shit criminal, driving a $75,000 Porsche, ran him down. Where the FUCK were you or Al when this happened?

Cops die every day, and as the media likes to remind us, “You signed up for it.” But, we are still people very similar to you, AND we will continue to sign up for it and die for it. It’s who we are—male/female/black/white/brown/yellow/gay/straight/trans/gimpy/glass eye, whatever. Someday, when it sinks in, maybe you, too, can be one of us. Maybe.


Have a question for the Cop? Email him at

[Correction Jan. 10, 2015: Strike-through denotes corrections made to the article.]

  • BruceBeardsley

    Way to not answer any questions and further divide between citizens and police. You are truly doing neither side a service with your writing.