When people assert that police need to behave more professionally to avoid the kinds of things we've been seeing lately why is the expectation that police need to be "perfectly optimized" with their training, as if that were possible in any profession?
Case in point, firefighters are trained to fight fires right? Yet 68 of them died on duty in 2015. Do we point the finger at them and decry they did not execute their tasks exactly as their training expected of them? How about race car drivers? They're "professionals" at what they do so surely they do everything perfectly when racing right? Yet about 85 NASCAR drivers have been killed since the sport's dawn.
A fire ground operation is a fire ground operation. It's changeable, hot, unpredictable, uncertain. It is nothing like the sanitary and predictable chain of events experienced during any training no matter how well simulated. Likewise NASCAR drivers, no matter how professional they are or experienced they may be, can ever account for the sometimes erratic and fallible actions of their fellow racers, or even their own judgements, at high speeds.
A scuffle is chaotic. Flailing arms and hands break down stability, not reinforce it. An angry challenging demeanor escalates emotions, it does not smooth them. A trained officer has a crack better than most at dealing with such situations, but the more a situation escalates out of control, the less perfect and ideal the response or the potential outcome. When a suspect is killed it does not mean it is just - it's always *unjust*. But that does not mean that the police are evil, that they intended to kill, are malicious, or absolutely at fault.
Firefighters should not be spit on or blamed for their own deaths or the deaths of those they could have saved, nor should NASCAR drivers, for taking training and experience for what they are. An edge, a chance, an advantage. Not a magic wand that makes them invincible to error or even human emotion.
I have yet to see a single video where confusion and high emotion were not factors in poorly judged shootings. Everyone has an obligation to be civilized in all encounters lest those encounters begin to degrade into dangerous territory for all involved.
In many cases even a degraded encounter ends well enough - nobody dies. But when it ends badly, be fair in interpreting the events that led up to it as an interaction, not as a political or racial issue.
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