91% of Democrats and 61% of Republicans surveyed by the Pew Research Center believe that the political war of words will escalate to violence.
These “words” either involve law enforcement or are directed at members of the law enforcement community, since our police officers are the first line of defense in protests and neighborhood “assemblies.”
Paul Bedard’s article in the Washington Examiner indicates that “Americans broadly agree that elected officials should avoid using heated language because it could encourage violence.
Nearly three-quarters of Americans (73%) say this, while just a quarter believe that elected officials “should be able to use heated language to express themselves without worrying about whether some people may act on what they say,’” if his reference to the center’s research.
Democrats and Democrat-leaning independents seem to believe that our president has ratcheted up the anger with his recent speeches and Twitter battles, despite major violence and threats being cast onto him by Democrats and other liberals.
The mainstream media, of course, has a large hand in this discourse since they spend more than 90% of their time and resources reporting negative stories about President Trump.
Additionally, two other factors work their way in – many of these negative stories are either completely false or fabricated using only a shell of the truth, and many “journalists” are publishing and speaking opinions in editorial fashion instead of verifying and reporting facts.
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This translates directly into violence towards our police in a very simple way – Trump supports law enforcement, and the mainstream media doesn’t. Liberals attack those they’ve been programmed to attack, and the enemies are delineated very clearly – conservatives, the police, the military, and anyone who supports any of these elements.
Citizens with only a minimal disdain for authority or those in police work have been effectively radicalized, and watching this unfold has been significantly horrifying. It’s nearly impossible to attack the President physically, so people are motivated to attack those he supports and those who support him.
Recent events have demonstrated this radicalization – people are emboldened to strike out against law enforcement officers or conservatives in general.
Just last week in Birmingham, Alabama, three separate events within five hours developed showing an escalation of violence against police. An officer responded to a call in the Birmingham suburb of Gardendale, where he encountered four men in a parking lot. One man was armed with a gun and jumped into his car, trying to run over the officer.
A few hours before, there was a dramatic shootout against police officers involving a robbery suspect who’d just tried to rob a grocery store – the situation turned into a firefight that spanned over several blocks of downtown Birmingham. That same evening, an officer was caught in the middle of a gun battle between two groups.
Officer Tara O’Sullivan was assassinated ambush-style while part of a group of officers responding to a domestic violence call in Sacramento.
Also last month, a Sugarcreek, Ohio (Cleveland suburb) police captain was violently attacked with a screwdriver by a truck driver during a traffic stop. An off-duty LAPD officer was attacked while shopping with his family at their local Costco in Corona, California.
And of course, in a strange development of the left attacking police and conservatives, the Portland, Oregon mayor has come under fire for telling police to stand down during ANTIFA quasi-riots where the conservative journalist Andy Ngo was violently attacked while covering the event.
In the same area, two sheriffs declined to allow their deputies to support Portland officers, stating that the mayor had ginned up this violence and they didn’t want their people getting hurt or killed.
Rhetoric is programming and radicalizing people, it seems, and with violent results. What we thought of liberals in their tolerant, “hug everybody” and advocate for the environment and animals agenda has devolved into straight out violence against anyone they disagree with – and our police and conservative leaders have been some of the first to be attacked.
During the last administration, police were vilified and called “stupid,” effectively dehumanizing law enforcement community members and demoting them to humans who are expendable and less than valuable. Combine this with continual language against authority, and citizens act is if they are participating in some wild video game, attacking people without repercussions.
The attacks are real, and the repercussions are deadly.
All across America, we’re seeing a rise in public unrest and more and more violent protests and riots like this. At Law Enforcement Today, we’ve seen the growing threat… and so we’ve partnered with Government Training Institute to bring advanced training and protection to our law enforcement officers across America to help keep them safe.
Many agencies are opting to stand up specialist units that employ new tactics based on intelligence and work to pre-empt issues by building dialogue and rapport with groups.
Others have relied solely on more “old school” confrontational tactics, which can often result in negative reaction and consequence that ends up having world-wide coverage.
Both sets of tactics have their place in the tool box of crowd management, but both options will always work better as part of a holistic approach. That more rounded approach is known as Public Order Management (POM).
A definition of Public Order Management:
“The systematic planning and steering of events in the public domain, or with a direct effect on this, where there is risk of public order disturbances, regardless of the number of people that are present at or involved with the disturbance”.
In literature they speak of maintaining order in public spaces and use the term “public order management”. This term is being used to describe organisations with the task of public order, their policies and programs, their individual and collective policing operations and the technology they use (McPhail, Schwingruber & McCarth, 1998).
POM was developed using the most current practices in Crowd Behaviors and Personal Identity; using TTP’s coming from the highest levels of experience of internationally recognized police practitioners, academics and scientific research in the field.
The focus and emphasis should therefore be on managing and maintaining the order and not get persuaded to focus on managing a disturbance; the preferred option should always be to allow peaceful protest.
The bedrock of this system is the gathering of information and intelligence to allow all parties involved to work to keep the peace. This affords agencies a way to plan, steer and act on what information is available to them ahead of the event.
Much of the information that is available is easily obtained and can make a significant difference not only when, but preferably before, it matters.
By properly setting up the POM, the organizations can start to structure their information gathering, registration and communication internally as well as between the parties involved and the public.
By utilizing these internationally recognized models, agencies can work to build the public’s confidence through relationship, thus providing a more positive image to both national and international media.
GTI will be holding Public Order Management Commanders courses starting on August 12 -16th.
For more information on the Public Order Management courses, please contact GTI directly.
Email: [email protected]
Visit our website for additional information on this and many other courses. www.gtitraining.org.