Cops are corrupt and they don't even try to hide it. They're liars and cheats who don't think twice about breaking the public trust and trampling it under their combat boots.
Does this sound extreme, unfair? It's not. The recent controversy over the Vancouver Police officer, Lee Chipperfield, who executed Paul Boyd, shooting the man six to eight times before pausing and then delivering the coup d'grace shot into Boyd's head proves the point.
This isn't about the shooter. The recently released bystander video will take care of Chipperfield. This is about the other five or six cops who stood beside the shooter, did nothing to prevent him from executing Boyd, and did even less afterward.
What were those cops doing as Boyd was shot to his hands and knees, shot somewhere between six and eight times? What were they doing during the 20-odd seconds while their comrade waited before firing the fatal shot that entered Boyd's face and blasted its way down to his heart?
Cops are trained. They're trained in law. They're trained in the use of force up to and including deadly force. They're trained observers.
Civilians aren't trained observers which is why judges caution jurors about the unreliability of eyewitness evidence when they testify. Cops, however, are treated differently because they're professional observers.
So, when Paul Boyd was executed, there were at least six professional observers on the scene who witnessed the killing from a distance of just a few feet. Why then did we have three, inconclusive inquiries into this killing over the past five years? Why did it take a tourist's cell-phone video to bring the truth into the open?
This is far bigger than one dead, mentally disturbed man and Constable Lee Chipperfield. This is about Chipperfield and every other cop who stood beside him that night, did nothing to prevent the execution and, by all indications, covered their own asses and Chipperfield's afterwards.
Cops are supposed to protect the public and that includes members of the public in need of protection from their fellow cops. When cops allow the public to be executed as they did with Paul Boyd and then fail to come forward with the truth, they step outside the law. They're not cops any more, they're outlaws, with guns.
We saw it in the killing of Robert Dziekanski. Four cops, Mounties, who all lied their asses off about how and why this man was put to death at their hands. In British Columbia, many of us still remember young Ian Bush slaughtered by a bullet fired straight into the back of his head by a cop, another Mountie, who claimed that, at the time, he was pinned flat on the floor, face down, with Bush atop him. (it's a feat, by the way, that no one has ever been able to replicate, including the cop, which makes it, in my view, a damned lie)
This culture of corruption is systemic, institutional, and it goes right to the top. I'm pretty sure there had to be a "don't ask/don't tell" blanket placed over the other officers who were with Chipperfield that night. How many of them were compelled to explain, in full detail, what happened not only between Chipperfield and his victim but also between each of them and Chipperfield, each of them and Boyd? How many of those other officers were called to account for their role in the execution of Paul Boyd for simply by virtue of being there they each had a role in it and everything that followed.
If Harper insists on indulging his prison fetish, he should fill the first one with cops like these. At a crime scene, no cop is a bystander and every one must account for his actions.