There Is No War On Cops – The Right Wing Myth
Last Updated on January 4, 2016
Everyone’s heard about the war on cops, yes? The right wing constantly goes on about how horrible the war on cops is, and how criminals are making our brave men and women in blue drop like flies without repercussion.
That President Obama, the Obama administration, and liberals in general further that war means it’s time for America to stop this war on cops in its tracks, right?
Wrong. Sorry to burst your bubble, America, but the war on cops isn’t real, according to Media Matters. The figment of the conservative, rabid right wing media’s imagination is a particularly dangerous figment at that – and it’s never existed.
2015 Safest Year On Record
The truth is that 2015 was the second safest year on record since the Prohibition in 1933, according to blogger Christopher Ingraham from the Washington Post.
Trend of Officer Fatalities Image by National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
Conservatives might think this is the “liberal media” slanting a story, but it’s not. Numbers don’t lie.
These numbers came right from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which is a non-profit organization that tracks these issues and is far from partisan.
War On Cops Deaths Attributed To Guns Car Accidents
Cause Of Death by National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
According to that data, 124 police officers died in the line of duty in 2015, as compared to 119 in 2014. However, it’s not just the numbers you have to look at – the manner of death is also important.
According to the NLEOMF, only 52 police officers were killed in the line of duty as a result of criminal activity. This is an overall decrease from the 61 who died as a result of criminal activity in 2014.
Accident Type by National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
War On Cops Or Citizens?
The number one cause of death of police officers in the line of duty was… Car accidents.
Unfortunately, the conservative media and the rabid right wing could care less. Both continue to run with the false narrative that the “war on cops’ is getting worse, and “liberals” are to blame. Nevertheless, according to the NLEOMF,
“Of the 52 officers feloniously killed this year, 39 were shot and killed; 11 officers were killed in traffic-related incidents and two officers were killed in incidents unrelated to traffic or firearms.”
In December of 2014, New York Police Department officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were shot and killed execution style by Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who killed himself afterwards. The New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, and the Sergeants Benevolent Association, NYPD unions, blamed these officers’ deaths on Mayor Bill DeBlasio, and Black Lives Matter because both protested the increase in police violence against citizens.
The blood of 2 executed police officers is on the hands of Mayor de Blasio. May God bless their families and may they rest in peace.
— SBA (@SBANYPD) December 21, 2014
The NYPBA and SBA, along with conservatives everywhere, believe BlackLivesMatter to be a hate group targeting police. To put the two different narratives in perspective,
“[September] alone saw 103 people killed by law enforcement. In the first week of September, police killed more civilians than the total number of police officers killed so far this year.“
Even 58 percent of Americans actually believe the right wing narrative about the “war on cops,” while Republican Governor Chris Christie from New Jersey blames President Obama and his administration for making criminals want to hunt police officers and Ted Cruz wasted taxpayer money on a Senate Judiciary Committee to investigate what he calls “The War On Police.”
It’s easy to understand why the conservative media would run with the “war on cops’ scenario as Fox News does. Officers getting killed is a tragedy, but 52 officers dying doesn’t qualify as war on cops.
These officers are making the ultimate sacrifice, which is a very real and dangerous part of the job for which every cop signs up and trains. Officers who take the oath to protect and serve are confirming their preparedness to make that sacrifice. If any officer isn’t prepared for that part of the job, that officer should find another line of work.
The false narrative fabricated in response to the Black Lives Matter movement that is the “war on cops” is an attempt to take the focus off our militarized police departments killing unarmed, non-violent citizens of color by the barrel-full. That’s what needs to stop.
Do you think there is a war on cops? What about a war on unarmed citizens?
Featured Image by Robb “Doc” Wilson via Flickr/CC by ND-2.0