David Correia has been documenting what's up with the Killer Kop Kontest scheduled to take place out at Shooting Range Park (yeah, that's its real name) later this week.
Safe and Sane all the way, right? Youbetcha.
There has already been a protest -- and threats from police -- at the Crown Plaza Hotel where the merry Killer Kops will be staying, and a couple of weeks ago, there was a protest at City Hall calling on the (generally absent) Mayor to cancel the event. He declined, as it was such a benefit for the City to have the Kontest in Albuquerque rather than -- say -- Phoenix. He thinks it's such a benefit for the city that has had the highest per-capita rate of police killings in the nation for quite some time now.
Message: Killer Kops are just fine with Mayor Berry and his sponsors. What's not fine: protesting them.
The attitude is typical with Berry, though he tries to come across as the bridgebuilder between contending forces, yadda yadda, what he's been saying to those who have lost loved ones to the bloody business of police killings is: "Tough." That, he believes, is all that those people deserve. Those people cause trouble, you see, and people who cause trouble aren't welcome in This Town. Capiche?
The fact that Killer Kops are Koming to Town gives him an opportunity to thank them effusively for protecting and serving him and his sponsors, and -- well why not -- for killing as many perps as they have. Good work, boys, right?
Here's an example of one of the Kontest events:
What's wrong with this picture? Well, let's think, shall we? (I know, I know, but still...)
Officer Friendly is sitting in the "Stop and Rob" (how drôle) breakfast joint, having his morning coffee and doughnut when a passel of perps walk in and say: "Hands Up!" ("Don't shoot"?) Rather than assess the situation and utilize non-shooting skills -- of which Officer Friendly apparently has none -- he goes immediately into perp-shooting mode, first by offing the two wearing body armor (head shots only!) who are in between hostages/bystanders, then by killing -- one by one -- perps 3-10. Pow! Bam! Kaboom!
In other words, "Kill first. Ask questions later." That's how it's done, no?
In the next exercise, Officer Friendly is answering a burglar alarm when he spots four perps exiting the building one of whom "draws a gun from his waist" (the way they always do) and "begins" to "point it" at Brave Officer Friendly (the way they are so often said to do, even when unarmed). At the tone, Officer Friendly is to commence firing, dispatching Threats 1-4 before entering the building and dispatching all the subsequent Threats (5-16) bam, bam, bam.
What could possibly be wrong with this scenario? "Safety first!" Right?
This one offers essential psychological conditioning: if the cop sees someone reach for their waistband, kill 'em. And if the cop sees someone accompanying someone who reaches for their waistband, kill 'em. And if the cop sees someone in a building where they've already killed a bunch of people, whether they reached for their waistband or not, kill 'em all. God will know his own.
We could go through the whole list of scenarios (from past Kompetitions) and see how police officers are conditioned to kill, kill, kill, and kill some more whenever they perceive a threat of any kind. These threats may or may not be real. The officer is conditioned to perceive threats everywhere under all situations, and to respond to the perception of a threat with lethal force every fucking time.
This Kompetition trains and conditions police officers to respond to every perception of threat with lethal force, and that's a big reason why there are so many police killings year in and year out, and why so many of them either do not involve actual threats at all or only minimal threats at best.
The Kompetition isn't the only or even the main reason there are so many police killings -- that's more deeply rooted in the culture of compliance and the "professionalization" of police forces -- but the scenarios they utilize in the Kompetition demonstrate the Killer Kop mindset that is instilled into police all over the country. This is how they are trained, conditioned and expected to perceive situations and this is how they are expected to respond.
It's horrifying. It's deadly. It's wrong.
It must stop.