Editorial: New York Times writer upset that cartoon “Paw Patrol” shows police in positive light


This editorial is brought to you by a former police chief and current staff writer for Law Enforcement Today.

Apparently attacking real police officers via slander and libel isn’t enough for the “progressive” left – they need to remove positive depictions of police officers from television as well.

In a recent New York Times article, columnist Amanda Hess posed arguments to scrap the likes of Paw Patrol from television.

While Paw Patrol’s Twitter account made moves to show they are respective toward the protests ongoing, users online were upset about the show featuring a police dog as a positive symbol. 

I’ll be honest and admit that when a columnist held this opinion about “defunding” Paw Patrol and all other positive depictions of fictional police characters, this author had a particular image in his head about what this NYT author looked like.

Alas, their author’s bio photo matched up pretty well to the preconceived image in my head.

Editorial: New York Times writer upset that cartoon "Paw Patrol" shows police in positive light
Amanda Hess – New York Times

Needless to say, Hess’ article was filled with enough social-justice gold to make a 16th century Spanish conquistador’s mouth salivate. Hess pointed out just why Paw Patrol is so problematic:

“The effort to publicize police brutality also means banishing the good-cop archetype, which reigns on both television and in viral videos of the protests themselves.

“Paw Patrol” seems harmless enough, and that’s the point: The movement rests on understanding that cops do plenty of harm.”

Except, this notion that police do “plenty of harm” is drivel.

Sure, there are instances where an officer breaches the line of law enforcement and enters into the realm of criminal activity – much like how many people go from law abiding citizen to miscreant. Furthermore, there’s a myriad of movies and television series that showcase a narrative about police corruption and criminal activity in police ranks.

There were several great movies like Training Day, Cop Land, Brooklyn’s Finest, Dark Blue, The Departed – all about or prominently featuring the exploits of corrupt police units. So, it’s not like there’s no pop culture media that hasn’t portrayed bad police behavior.

In all honesty, there a good balance between positive and negative portrayals, but Hess feels like any positive portrayal of police is just terrible.

Hess even went so far as to criticize videos of police officers uniting with demonstrators in a show of unity:

“In recent days, supposedly uplifting images of the police have spread wildly across the internet, competing for views with evidence of cops beating, gassing and arresting protesters.”

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Hess goes on to cite some of the positive, real-life depictions of police among protesters and then writes:

“These images show cops engaging in a kind of pantomime of protest, mimicking the gestures of the demonstrators until their messages are diluted beyond recognition. They reframe protests against racist police violence into a bland, nonspecific goal of solidarity.”

The NYT columnist cites that there are simply too many instances where police are “humanized” and that black America is not. In Hess’ opinion, the notion of a “good cop” is overshadowed by a violent “system”:

“Cops can dance, they can hug, they can kneel on the ground, but their individual acts of kindness can no longer obscure the violence of a system. The good-cop act is wearing thin.”

Essentially, Hess is upset that there aren’t more depictions of bad police officers within the media. However, there’s likely already an overabundance of them. Whenever watching suspense thrillers centered around police, you’re likely to find a “dirty cop” amidst the plot line.

TV shows like Blue Bloods, Law & Order: SVU, and countless others, have delved into plot lines at some point or another about either police corruption or brutality cases. And those are shows that typically showcase police in a positive light.

Also, Heather MacDonald, who is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, noted that empirical data shows police interactions are overwhelmingly standard and unbiased toward race:

“However sickening the video of Floyd’s arrest, it isn’t representative of the 375 million annual contacts that police officers have with civilians…A solid body of evidence finds no structural bias in the criminal-justice system with regard to arrests, prosecution or sentencing. Crime and suspect behavior, not race, determine most police actions.”

While most of the leftist outrage over police being shown in a positive light in either fictional or reality-based settings may be upsetting to them, the narrative used to slander policing as a whole is based upon the anecdotal versus the reality of the overall picture.

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