Why Kiwis Hate the Police II

Many forget that the warrant of a New Zealand Police officer is not to enforce the law but to keep the peace

Consider this thought experiment. You’re driving down a state highway at 100km/h, with some cannabis in your car. Going around a bend, you see a Police car upside-down in a river with no person in sight. Obviously the driver failed to take the corner, and is almost certainly in dire need of immediate medical help. The question is: do you stop and help, or do you just drive on past?

Most Kiwis would argue that the correct answer is clearly to stop and help. After all, it’s a medical emergency, and the Police couldn’t possibly be so unreasonable as to charge a person with a cannabis offence if someone’s life was on the line. Surely discretion would be used in such an instance.

These Kiwis would have more faith in the Police than Caleb Smith, of Greymouth. His story, which hit the news yesterday, has appalled New Zealanders. Smith made a suicide attempt, and part of the Police response was to search his house, discover some cannabis plants, and charge him with a criminal offense. He now has three criminal convictions.

This incident is very enlightening when considered in the context of broader relations between the public and the Police. The reaction of most New Zealand citizens when reading about the conduct of the officers in the Caleb Smith story is horror, disgust and outrage, but that isn’t the worst thing.

The worst thing is the effect stories like this have on public perceptions of New Zealand Police officers.

Stories like Caleb Smith’s tell the reader that the sort of person who becomes a New Zealand Police officer is the sort of person who is willing to go up to another Kiwi at their lowest point – in the midst of a suicide attempt – and kick him in the guts, making his life far more difficult for no benefit to the public good, and without the consent of the New Zealand people. It’s a person willing to be cruel simply for the sake of it, using their uniform as a shield to evade responsibility.

Like a dog, they just do what they’re told without consideration. At least, this is how the Police naturally start to appear in the eyes of the population they are supposed to be keeping safe when that population read about such incidents.

Cries of “They’re just doing their jobs!” don’t change the sentiments that stories like Smith’s make Kiwis start to have towards Police officers. In fact, mindlessly following orders is as contemptible as anything else – and people know this.

At the end of the day, every Police officer has the free will to refuse to enforce laws that are unjust, and if they choose not to exercise that free will they cannot complain of the consequences.

It is the duty of every sentient being to consider whether their actions cause suffering to leave the world, or whether their actions bring suffering into the world. That Police officers enforce a law on the Kiwi people that causes great suffering, and that they do so without the consent of those people – who do not approve of that law – is worthy of contempt.

If Police officers choose to enforce a law, even when doing so requires them to willfully add more suffering to the life of one of their fellows who is already suffering severely, then it’s only natural that the people come to hate them.

1 thought on “Why Kiwis Hate the Police II”

  1. yes I agree totally with you on how the police can be totally unreasonable enforcing drug laws when they themselves will not readily submit themselves to random drug testing.

    Yes they have no empathy as to why a person may have been cultivating cannabis especially if it is for personal use some people need it just to get through some of the shit that life throws at them
    We are all adults over the age of 18 so we should be able to be free to take what ever drugs we want to it is our right as human beings they talk about the free world some please point me to where that is! We need to have a totally independent group of investigators even publicly crowd funded to pay them to investigate the police and their wrong doings. While the supposedly independent police authority continues there is no hope of bringing the police to justice or accountability while they are left to investigate their own gang members the biggest gang in the country funded by tax payers money. What a bad bad joke this system is!!! Unheard of would they are allow all other gangs to investigate their own member and decide the outcomes for them?????? I mean shit the police can shot and kill an innocent man while attempting to shoot another man attempting to escape and they DO NOT EVEN GET CHARGED WITH MANSLAUGHTER WHAT UP WITH THAT ? THAT NEED TO CHANGE AND MAKE THEM ACCOUNTABLE AS EVERYONELSE IS!!!
    The first thing you learn when you get a gun license it to consider what is behind your target and if there is any chance what so ever that you could hit and innocent person or for that matter any person then you DO NOT TAKE THE SHOT. The armed defender are supposed to be professional and should no under any circumstances shoot and killed an innocent person! They all should be accountable there are far to many deaths involving the police where they do not get prosecuted!! Why aren’t they accountable just as much as we private citizens are ???
    We need to be able to take our power back from the government and vote using digital means on our phones and computer to vote on all the important issues rather than to rely on the mps and government to make them for us. It would be really simple to do this and It would stop corruption by big bankers and big corporations dictating to our government what policies they can and will implement.

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