Leftist Infiltration of the Police Will Lead To Tyranny

When Joe Biden read from his State of the Union script about the unprecedented crime wave we are now facing (thanks to leftist policies), he stated: “The answer is to fund the police.” At that, the Democrats in Congress leaped to their feet to applaud, however insincerely. But after eight years of supporting the lies of Black Lives Matter Marxists and leftist elites—that American policing is systemically racist, cops are routinely hunting unarmed black men, and that the real answer to alleviating crime is to empty the jails and defund the police—their phoniness was palpable.

On crime and policing, most Americans correctly see the Democrats as fakes. The Democrats are terrified because the poll numbers are coming in, and they are desperate to escape a righteous political reckoning in November.  

Still, it would be a big mistake to believe that the radical Left hates the idea of policing altogether. They have no problem with the police if they can control the mission. In a way, the police are just another tool of the regime. Everything depends upon what they are asked to do. If the original mission of ensuring public safety and justice by putting criminals in jail is subverted and then twisted into one of totalitarian enforcement of elitist power at the expense of the working class, then you will find no more enthusiastic supporter of the police than a leftist. Achieving this transformation is one of the ultimate goals of today’s leftist elites—and they are making headway. 

What exactly is it that they are trying to subvert? Let us look at the traditional foundation of policing they are undermining and examine several examples where leftist subversion has already succeeded.   

In creating the London Metropolitan Police Department in 1829, Sir Robert Peel, called the “father of modern policing,” established nine principles of law enforcement. These remarkable values have stood the test of time, were an impetus for the community policing revolution during the 1980s, and are still taught in modern police academies.  

Peel’s principles for defining the police mission, building trust, the proper use of force, how to measure success, fair and respectful treatment of citizens, and police-community partnership—are classic. But Peel went deeper, setting forth principles that the police must uphold to maintain legitimacy as an institution and to preserve the social fabric of Western democracy. Two principles in particular are worth reading in full.    

Principle 5. To seek and preserve public favor, not by pandering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolutely impartial service to law, in complete independence of policy and without regard to the justice or injustice of the substance of individual laws, by ready offering of individual service and friendship to all members of the public without regard to their wealth or social standing, by ready exercise of courtesy and friendly good humor and by ready offering of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life . . .

Principle 8. To recognize always the need for strict adherence to police-executive functions, and to refrain from even seeming to usurp the powers of the judiciary of avenging individuals or the state and of authoritatively judging guilt and punishing the guilty.

In a free society, the police are guardians of democracy. The radical Left must destroy belief in these principles to establish an organization that will support the efforts of a totalitarian government and violate the rights of the public on behalf of the ruling elites. This has already happened with our FBI, which is so thoroughly corrupted that it essentially functions as a political secret police. Crooked leadership resulted in the agency’s participation in the now utterly discredited Russian collusion hoax to undermine President Trump, investigating and intimidating parents as domestic terrorists for speaking out at local school board meetings, and the relentless persecution of nonviolent January 6 protesters. The FBI is a disgrace. But when local law enforcement is subverted by leftist ideology, misconduct rises to another level. The results can be brutal and deadly. 

There is an old saying in policing, “No one hates bad cops more than good cops.” It’s true. When good officers see videos of cops brutalizing unarmed, innocent, nonviolent citizens—they get a sick feeling in their stomachs. This reaction is caused by two things. First is the natural revulsion to the unfairness of seeing a bully abuse a weaker person. Second is the disgust of watching an officer who has sworn to protect the weak and uphold the rule of law—dishonor the oath, the uniform, and the badge. 

During the past year, I’ve felt this revulsion more than once. Most recently, observing the vicious brutality by members of the Ottawa Police Department (OPD) in their unjustified and criminal use of force against peacefully protesting truckers in Ottawa, Ontario.

The images of the OPD Mounted Unit smashing into a peaceful crowd with their horses and trampling an elderly disabled woman, an officer repeatedly striking a protester with a rifle butt as he lay on the ground, and others savagely kicking an unarmed trucker who had just peacefully submitted to arrest—were disgusting.

OPD’s Interim Police Chief Steve Bell’s enthusiastic execution of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s dictatorial orders to violently attack the truckers was particularly disturbing. With malevolent glee, Bell announced OPD’s future mission. Instead of public safety, crime suppression, and crime prevention, his municipal police department will now identify, hunt down, and prosecute protesters and their supporters. The objective? To crush their finances and destroy their lives. This is what a police chief and department in the service of the totalitarian Left looks like. 

But America already had a good look at completely lawless policing at the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021. Led by a supervisor, D.C. Metro Police officers sadistically beat unarmed protesters, including two women trapped in the lower west terrace tunnel. Police officers have been sent to prison for less, but this outrageous criminal assault has been covered up and buried by Democratic D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and Metro Police Chief Robert Contee.

Inside the Capitol building, U.S. Capitol Police Lieutenant Michael Byrd fired from ambush and killed Ashli Babbitt—a five-foot-two, 110-pound, unarmed woman who posed no threat to him or anyone else. Byrd clearly violated every basic deadly force law and policy. In a different department with a different victim, Byrd’s malfeasance would have resulted in a murder charge. Instead, a bad shooting was covered up and whitewashed by the leftist Capitol Police, the Justice Department, and the national press. 

With Byrd’s unjustified and illegal killing of Babbitt, there is bad news, and there is good news. The bad news is, obtaining justice for Ashli Babbitt and her family will take a long time. Nothing can happen until Democrats are no longer a majority in Congress and Biden is evicted from the White House. The good news is murder has no statute of limitations. 

It’s easy to overlook, but if we allow radical leftist ideology and totalitarian mentality to take over our police departments, it will result in unforeseen and dangerous consequences. Many more rogue cops will be turned loose. Videos of police violence on January 6 abound (and not just January 6). These are not examples of merely “excessive force”—they are straight-up crimes. There is no legitimate police purpose—no arrests are even being attempted. These beatings of non-resisting, defenseless people are thuggery, torture, and sadism.

So, what’s going on here?   

The vast majority of police officers become cops for the right reasons—to serve their communities, help people, and make a difference. But a few misfits get on the job for the wrong reasons. Some were bullied as kids, maybe never won a fistfight, but now— with a gun, a badge, and authority—they have a chance for some payback. Others might have been bullies as kids themselves, enjoyed it, and sought the power of the police to take their pathology to the next level.

Both types make bad cops. They are often toxic employees, adopt a passive-aggressive attitude towards management, become marginal performers, are a drag on department morale, and make a terrible impression on the public. But even though they don’t deserve the honor and privilege of being police officers, it is virtually impossible to fire them unless they commit egregious violations. Except for some very small departments, union or civil service protections are very strong for these public employees, so they remain on the job. But the bad tendencies and potential for misconduct are always there—just below the surface.

When leftist ideology replaces Peel’s principles of treating all persons with respect, fairness, and impartiality—the brakes are off. Certain groups of people become open targets and rogue cops can act with impunity. The pictures tell the story. Once these standards and expectations of decency have been torn down and a group of people has been deemed enemies of the state—whether patriotic Canadian truck drivers in Ottawa or white Republican Trump supporters in Washington, D.C.—anything goes.

The stakes of the November election keep getting higher. The threat of a leftist takeover of law enforcement is real. We have seen the results, and they are disastrous. 

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About Maurice Richards

Maurice Richards is the former chief of the Martinsburg Police Department in West Virginia. He served as chief from 2015 to 2020 after a 24-year career in the Chicago Police Department. Richards holds a doctorate in adult education from Northern Illinois University. His writing has been featured in Human Events, The Federalist, The Hill, and The Daily Caller

Photo: Andrej Ivanov/AFP via Getty Images