Two things we learned this week: One, a mass shooting that does not involve the words “Allahu Akbar” is somehow not considered terrorism, even if the murders are done in the pursuit of political aims.
And two, United States law enforcement officers get really creative when the crazy dude at the other end of the gun is black. And his target is white policemen.
“He wants to kill who? Quick, call the Terminator!”
That’s right. The Dallas Police Department used a bomb-disposal robot as a suicide bomber to kill Micah Johnson, the suspect in the murder of five policemen, in what might have been the Terminator’s first off-screen, peace-time killing, outside of the English language.
And, suddenly, the world moved a step closer to the man versus machines apocalypse of sci-fi films.
Is Prime Minister Keithos still groaning about his lazy special branch police guards? Maybe he can return a speed gun or two for one of these robots that really know about going beyond the call of duty.
“As far as I know, it appears to be the first intentional use of a lethally armed robot by the police in the United States,” said Elizabeth Joh, law professor at the University of California at Davis.
Johnson’s kill order, apparently, was given by Dallas police chief David Brown.
“We saw no other option but to use our bomb robot and place a device on its extension for it to detonate where the suspect was,” Brown told reporters.
Well, the police had no option if you ruled out extended negotiations—they had cornered Johnson for just a few hours—or maybe trying to starve Johnson out. But then an Afro-American nutter who was armed to the teeth, had no hostages and was believed to have already murdered several policemen, was never going to elicit much patience.
There sure won’t be any feel good movies about this Afro-American sniper. Almost prophetically, Brown is also Afro-American.
If Johnson was motivated by the frustration that led to popular protest songs like NWA’s “Fuck tha police” and Ice-T’s “Cop killer”, his demise quicker reminded Mr Live Wire of a sketch by US comedian Chris Rock.
“Everything white people don’t like about black people, black people really don’t like about black people… It’s like a civil war going on with blacks. And there’s two sides: there’s black people and there’s ni**as. And ni**as have got to go.”
Of course, in Johnson’s defense, which is easier to mount from the safety of an armchair in Trinidad, he is a military veteran, who was literally trained to kill by the United States government.
He was taught to annihilate targets identified by his commanding officer. Problem was he decided to wage his own war and reasoned that white men in police uniform were the enemy.
To paraphrase Rock again, Johnson didn’t go crazy. Rambo just went Rambo. And, in war, you are either a hero or a fiend depending on who you are shooting at.
If you don’t believe me, how come nobody has asked acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams for an update on the unsolved murder of escaped convict Hassan Atwell?
Atwell, anonymous police sources claimed, was murdered by the “Rasta City Gang” in late July 2015. And then National Security Minister Carl Alfonso’s response at the time was: “I am glad they got him.”
You reap, says the good book, what you sow.
And, on the topic of glamourising violence against police, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character murdered over a dozen officers in the Terminator without the movie, star actor or director James Cameron facing boycotts or being vilified by the US press or politicians.
But just wait for the next rapper who delivers a verse about doing anything but hugging policemen!