Jaywalking and Other Escalation Inducers

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A guy named Nandi Cain got badly beaten by a law enforcer over . . . jaywalking.

Yes, I know. Cain invited the brutal take-down and beating. Not for jaywalking – but because he did not Submit to and Obey the law enforcer. That’s what apologists for the enforcer will say, anyhow. The enforcer was merely doing his job. Which is to enforce the law.

Emphasis on force.

After all, how else to obtain submission and compliance? The enforcer couldn’t just let the jaywalker  . . . walk away, could he?

Perhaps they have a point. Maybe the problem isn’t the thuggery of law enforcers but that there are so many thuggy laws for them to enforce.

Horse, cart – etc.

Why should it be illegal to walk across a street just because there’s a sign that says you may not? What if there’s no cross traffic? What if there’s no reason to stand there like a dolt and not cross . . . other than there being a sign that says you may not cross?

Isn’t it like the laws that demand a full stop at every stop sign, even when there’s no reason to come to a complete stop? If you can see perfectly well there are no cars oncoming, it’s a waste of gas as well as of time to come to a dead stop – just because there’s a sign.

There are two problems with such laws. The first is that they overstep. All the talk about “our freedoms” notwithstanding, the fact is we live in a micromanaged, adult-diapered version of a School for the Not Particularly Bright in which it is presumed everyone is an imbecile and therefore must be treated as such even if a given individual has not done anything to warrant such treatment.

Such as walking across the street when there is no cross traffic and it is therefore obviously safe to do so. Same goes for making a right turn on red, passing a slow-poke notwithstanding a double yellow line – but clear lines of sight and no question that there isn’t a car coming in the opposite lane.

Why should such a person be in peril of assault by an enforcer in such a case? Because he ignored a sign forbidding it? This is an obnoxious – an evil – doctrine. It is even worse than the famous literary persecution of Jean Valjean by the merciless Inspector Javert – because after all, Jean Valjeab did steal something. His persecution was over the top, of course. But there was an actual underlying crime – properly speaking.

But what is the jaywalker’s crime? Or the seat belt not-wearer’s? The California stopper’s? Have they taken anything from anyone? Have they harmed anyone? They haven’t even harmed themselves.

Well, they might.

So the scofflaw must be treated as though he had.

Regardless.

This brings us to the main problem with these Pecksniffian edicts. They are brutally binary. The law says you may not walk across the street unless the signal first says you may. The law says you must come to a complete stop. It is either, or. There is no latitude, no discretion – and so, no option for the enforcer to exercise judgment. To take into account that, for instance, there was no traffic around and so yes, it was safe to walk across the street and moronic to just stand there like a Pavlovian animal waiting for a blinking light to trigger your behavior rather than the use of your mind.

At least, not officially.

A law enforcer is trained – programmed, just like a Pavlovian robot – to enforce the laws. He does binary. He is required to do binary. If he doesn’t do binary, then he himself is a violator of the law.

Thus, 58 MPH in an under-posted 55 MPH zone with traffic averaging 60-ish is illegal speeding and a ticketable offense, regardless of the idiocy and injustice  of the thing.

Nandi Cain made the mistake of arguing with the enforcer who pummeled him. Not over whether he jaywalked – but over why he was being hassled for it given no harm was caused. Law enforcers do not care whether any harm was caused. They care about just one binary thing – whether the human cattle who is the object of their attentions did or did not violate the law.

If you did, then you must Submit and Obey.

The enforcers have been trained to be every bit as merciless as Inspector Javert with regard to suborning your immediate submission. Their tactic, in the event you do not comply immediately, is often grotesquely disproportionate escalation.

Because what else is there?

Enforcers are brutal only secondarily – like the aftershock of an earthquake.

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Author of "Automotive Atrocities" and "Road Hogs" (MBI). Currently living amongst the Edentulites in rural SW Virginia.

21 COMMENTS

  1. It seems impossible, jaywalking is a culturally accepted statute. But anything could be, if Humpty Dumpty makes it so. Carnivores are the new murderers. Story at 11.

    Will lab grown meat become cheap enough before meat eating becomes illegal?

    There has been a decline in violence over recent centuries. All sorts of violence and cruelty were legal and considered acceptable a century or two ago and are now beyond the pale — slavery, child labour, bear-baiting, wife-beating.

    What routine habits do we practice today that will become rare and outlawed in two or three generations’ time?

    One trend of history is clear, that one day in the future people will look back on the rearing of animals for slaughter as barbaric. The number of animals killed for food each year — about 60 billion chickens, 1.5 billion pigs, a billion sheep and goats and 300 million cows — continues to rise.

    Yet the early signs of the fatwas of change are already there: rising vegetarianism, growing disapproval of factory farming, boycotts of foie gras, opposition to hunting, emphasis on the ethical treatment of farm animals.

    The deciders have a way of driving these trends inexorably forwards, without anybody being visibly in charge of them. The UK plans to introduce new rules after Brexit to restrict the export of live animals for slaughter.

    The animal welfare lobby industry is still scraping the barrel for causes to take up. But soon the “In The Arms of an Angel” song will play over cruel images of scene of steak dinners. There’s even an organisation called Crustacean Compassion that is campaigning to add lobsters and crabs to the list of species protected by the Animal Welfare Act.

    Already there are bans of animals in circuses. The rights of animals has generally been on one-way travel to compassion, at the expense of the property rights of their human owners. In the Middle Ages, a popular spectator sport was to nail a cat to a tree and then take turns trying to batter it to death with your head, with your hands tied behind your back, while trying to avoid being scratched by the terrified animal.

    Cock fighting is now unacceptable almost everywhere. Britain made it illegal as long ago as 1835; Louisiana was the last American state to ban it in 2008. Bull fighting will probably not last long.

    The evolution of morals can go the other way too. Things that were once disgraceful can become acceptable, even admirable.

    Take homosexuality, thoroughly disapproved of by almost everybody (including some gay people) little more than half a century ago, today the laws and culture demand it is something to be respected, even celebrated. Always the ruling classes are pushing shifts in attitudes that increase their power.

    Consider this startling coincidence of timing. The inventor of the computer, mathematician Alan Turing, committed suicide in 1954 after being prosecuted and chemically castrated for his illegal and (at the time) disgraceful homosexuality.

    About a year later Vladimir Nabokov published a book about a middle-aged man’s unusual lust for a very young girl. He shot to fame, wealth and literary celebrity. Today pedophilia is even more of a crime and a sin than it was then, homosexuality not at all.

    It seems random, the way some things evolve towards tolerance; While others towards intolerance. The NWO wants you to believe it’s inevitable, and fortuitous.

    Yet consider the regime that came to power in Germany in 1933. It passed and enforced unprecedented laws against cruelty to animals while actively promoting vegetarianism, conservation and respect for nature.

    Yet, to centralize its power, it also rediscovered and normalized depths of cruelty to human beings that had long been dropped from social acceptability. Only the libertarian theory predicts this bizarre combination of trends.

    The idea that we are gradually and inevitably becoming nicer, more tolerant and more compassionate, spreading our morality to more kinds of people and more species of animal, is a mainstream delusion. These things often evolve in the wrong direction. With the state gaining freedom, and countless individuals nearing the status of slaves.

    The general drift of culture is heading very slowly towards disapproval of killing all animals for meat, however humanely it is done. If you suggest, the answer is to breed animals without much in the way of brains, so they cannot suffer, then you arouse an even more horrified “yuk” reaction.

    Cows and sheep already have much smaller brains than their wild relatives. Why not go further and breed an animal that can do little more than eat and grow, and is literally too “stupid” even to feel pain?

    Hopefully artificial meat will get there first. It probably is not beyond the wit of modern science to devise a reactor in which grass enters at one end and burgers pop out at the other end. That’s what a cow does anyway, so it must be possible.

    A Californian company called Perfect Day sells “milk” made from fermented yeast to which it adds plant-based sugars, fats, and minerals; the company claims it tastes like cow’s milk. Beware, cattle, robots are coming to take even your jobs.

    For the moment the barriers to the introduction of “in-vitro meat” (IVM) are technical and economic. A synthetic hamburger can be made from beef muscle stem cells, but at huge expense. The industry is forecasting supermarket-priced meat within ten years.

    However, there is a further problem. Earlier this month a psychologist and a vet published a survey of people’s attitudes. They found that although vegans approved of the idea of lab-grown meat, they were unwilling to try it.

    These results demonstrate an apparent paradox: those who are already meat restrictive appear less willing to engage with IVM; however, regular vegetarians, along with pescatarians, reported more positive views of IVM compared to farmed meat.

    Anything that today seems natural, may tomorrow be forbidden. Don’t forget the real golden rule.

  2. America is a police state where men are required to pretend written fatwas are more important than biological reality. Even the NAP is less important than our human lives.

    KIRK: No, I do not understand. Explain. Consider that an order.
    SPOCK: Captain, there are some things which transcend even the discipline of the service.
    KIRK: Would it help if I told you that I’ll treat this as totally confidential?
    SPOCK: It has to do with biology.
    KIRK: What?
    SPOCK: Biology.
    KIRK: What kind of biology?
    SPOCK: Vulcan biology.
    KIRK: You mean the biology of Vulcans? Biology as in reproduction? Well, there’s no need to be embarrassed about it, Mister Spock. It happens to the birds and the bees.
    SPOCK: The birds and the bees are not Vulcans, Captain. If they were, if any creature as proudly logical as us were to have their logic ripped from them as this time does to us. How do Vulcans choose their mates? Haven’t you wondered?
    KIRK: I guess the rest of us assume that it’s done quite logically.
    SPOCK: No. No. It is not. We shield it with ritual and customs shrouded in antiquity. You humans have no conception. It strips our minds from us. It brings a madness which rips away our veneer of civilisation. It is the pon farr. The time of mating. There are precedents in nature, Captain. The giant eelbirds of Regulus Five, once each eleven years they must return to the caverns where they hatched. On your Earth, the salmon. They must return to that one stream where they were born, to spawn or die in trying.
    KIRK: But you’re not a fish, Mister Spock. You’re
    SPOCK: No. Nor am I a man. I’m a Vulcan. I’d hoped I would be spared this, but the ancient drives are too strong. Eventually, they catch up with us, and we are driven by forces we cannot control to return home and take a wife. Or die.
    KIRK: I haven’t heard a word you’ve said, and I’ll get you to Vulcan somehow.
    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3xkolm_amok-time_shortfilms

  3. Law Enforcement as a concept, as an official function is one of the surest ways to identify a police state.

    A free people in a functioning society have a duty to enforce the law themselves. If you catch the robber, or the murderer, or the rapist, he might be handed over to a peace officer for jury trial. Or he might not.

    Any place with official Law Enforcement is a tyranny, a police state with tryannical rulers. People ignorant of history don’t realize that the “police force” is a late 19th century invention of big city machine politicians. They were intended to keep the irish, or the niggers, or whoever else someone didn’t like, in line.

    Unfortunately, passive resistance and civil disobedience isn’t enough. These idiots believe their own BS, they are of average or less intelligence, and all the constraints that civil society used to have over them, are temporarily checkmated. There was a time when a group of local guys could go have a man to man talk with the local cop if he got out of line. Now, with DNA, and omnipresent cameras, and satellite comm, it is very hard to knock a little sense into one of them. I predict a long and low level civil war like we are currently enjoying, where the uniformed thugs will start to be eliminated from a distance or in creative ways.

    I wish it weren’t so, but they chose the fight.

    • Important history is deliberately not taught or mistaught in schools. People don’t know how much of what they think always was and we cannot live without are actually quite recent (in historical terms) inventions. And then how those inventions were merely scams or for some purpose that is no longer paletable today.

      The sad thing is that it is nearly impossible to teach people these facts because the schools already mistaught them and they are not open to new information and cannot admit that they believed lies when they were children. So they’ll block out the contary information. The schools are the key. Take them back and change towards liberty is possible. Don’t and any change or resistance is just a minor temporary set back for the powers that be.

    • Ernie, you’re so right. We don’t elect cops…..as if we really elect anyone. Those who expect cops to do the bidding of the people are rightly suffering from drinking the coolaid.

      I worked with a woman with a 16 year old son who was racing a slow Chevy pickup against his buddies slow pickup. An old man simply pulled out in front of them at a DQ, got hit and died. The other kid hit him but both felt really bad. Now this woman’s son wasn’t implicated but she was bound to do the “right” thing. She asked me about it after telling me the angst her son was suffering. I told her he was punishing himself and had learned his lesson. Don’t take it to the cops or you’ll both end up regretting it after they’ve made victims of you and him. So she doesn’t take my advice and has the kid go tell his part to the cops. This started a chain of events that was Machiavellian. After a couple months she looked like she needed a good tranquilizer and a few nights sleep. She said she wished she’d taken my advice. She was Hispanic but tried to be a good citizen(in her view at the time). She reverted to being mute as her kin and ancestry had in the face of authoritah. To be honest, most white people of every background had learned to stay low and keep their own counsel. It’s only gotten worse and unfortunately, continue to worsen. The killings we’ve seen in the last year are signs the gloves are coming off.

  4. Brilliant article.

    If diapers were mandatory we could take fewer breaks, which would grow our economy.

    Mandatory colostomy bags and catheters would be even better.

    Also it would help us better focus on driving, since our bodily needs would be attended to.

    Sensible urination and defecation control are rules of the road I would vote for.

    Video Shows Raging Cop Run Over and Kick a Compliant Biker
    http://thefreethoughtproject.com/video-shows-raging-cop-run-kick-compliant-biker-promoted-captain/

    • Thanks, Tor!

      I may be delusional – but I remember an America in which attacking a person over something like jaywalking just wouldn’t have happened. The over-the-top use of force to enforce even petty edicts is a New and Ugly thing in this land of the once somewhat free…

      • Eric I think what you remember is a time before cell phones and internet. Those things have always happened, those of us not black and not in the cities just didn’t realize it.

      • eric, I recall when it first happened and rapidly gained popularity since the obese blue line liked the way it felt. Back when there were actually demonstrations that the shrub’s just us dept. had police attack because of all the nefarious shit he was doing and the way they started using any excuse to temporarily detain large numbers of said protestors….or just people going or coming from work when the Ron Paul revolution picked up steam. I have never seen a party attack one of their own with more vehemence. The attacking of pedestrians became the abuse and harassment du jour. Rarely were people charged but commonly they were beaten and detained. It wasn’t in one city but anywhere a Republican group was meeting. It spread like wildfire for various reasons but mostly because that rotund blue line found it so satisfying and they got lots of kudo’s all the way to the top dog, er, shit(excuse me canine friends). Once it became popular with no negative consequences for the bully crowd of just us there has been no turning back. Need to impress your buddies or simply having a shitty day remembering you have a wife not nearly so hot as all those hotties you harass every day and with that underlying feeling of not being as smart but that other feeling of entitlement, it’s just one of the great perks of that fat blue line. It can be used anywhere too…..except for the well-heeled parts of town.

  5. Here’s the problem though, bad laws are never repealed. Government only grows, it never shrinks.

    We have so many laws where I live, that everyone is guilty of something all the time, and cops do apply discretion when harassing people. If you’re a white family jaywalking, for instance, you’ll likely get away with it. If you’re a black dude, you’re going to get harassed.

    The only way to keep cops in check is to have a small set of laws for big problems, and no more.

  6. Here’s the issue with this post:

    YOU DON’T WANT COPS EXERCISING DISCRETION.
    Here’s why:

    1. If cops have discretion under the law then they are the law. They get to choose who’s guilty and who isn’t. They do this now. It’s called speed limits. Everyone’s violating it including themselves so they get to pick who’s guilty and by default they are guilty because everyone is doing it.

    2. If cops have discretion they save bad laws from being repealed. Speed limits being the perfect example. We have them because cops exercise discretion and “fix” the bad law by allowing 9 mph over in most cases before they come after you.

    If cops blindingly and 100% uniformly enforced the law the people would riot in the streets and the laws would be fixed. We’re seeing this now with MJ. If you did 51 in a 50 and a cop nailed you, not because they judged you to be doing something more dangerous than others but because they caught you doing 51 and that’s a crime PERIOD guess how long it would take before speed limits were tossed out and something better came along? About 5 minutes.

    I’ve won a speeding ticket on the 8th amendment. That is because everyone is speeding and almost no one is charged the officer has to have an objective reason why what I was doing was more dangerous than another person otherwise it’s UNUSUAL punishment. I had to appeal the mouth breather in traffic court’s ruling but I won. The reason why I won is because the law really is unenforceable even though most people like speed limits specifically because cops constantly let people away with it and wage PR campaigns about it’s evil (even though no such evidence exists)

    The best cops are the ones that blindly enforce exactly as written. They can’t be fired for it, and they force change because it’s the laws that cause the evil cops to do what they do, and abuse people the way they do. Solve the root problem, not the vehicle of enforcement. (i.e. 90% of our cops exist to enforce the BS drug war, so end the drug war and you end the problem with cops. Don’t try and fix cop’s behavior when they’re doing exactly what the drug war was designed for: oppress blacks and hippies.)

      • I disagree with the idea that robotic enfrocement of laws will lead to them being changed. By some miracle, we were able to repeal the 55 mph speed limit in 1995 because of its sheer idiocy, but the results in other countries is not so good. Look at how speeding and speed limits are handled in Australia. They enforce at 1kmh over in some cases and there is nary a whisper of protest, nor is the law likely to be changed.

        The bodies of countless people under communism is a testament to police and state power going unchecked.

        So, with few exceptions, no one is going to change a thing.

    • The only disagreement I’d have with John is that in order for it to work you would need to have a much higher enforcement rate. If everyday half or more of the speeders got a ticket it might change. These things are left go not due to discretion but due to the relatively low change that you are affected.

    • Hi John,

      The same argument is valid with the drug laws. If rich white people were targeted as often and received similarly harsh sentences as the poor and marginalized (poor white folks are treated like shit as well), the drug war would end almost immediately. But, this will never happen because arbitrary enforcement is beneficial to the PTB. As BrentP has pointed out, the State does not usually target people with the resources to defend themselves. Part of this is simply the fact that it is easier to get convictions (mostly through plea bargains) from the poor. But, another part is that the State needs to pit classes of people against each other in order to be seen as a “protector”. Occasionally the elite go after one of their own, but this is done to make a false show of impartial justice, or simply personal animus.
      Jeremy

      • Jeremy, all spot on. 93% of criminal cases in Tx. are plea bargains and that’s almost exactly the same stats for the entire US. Judges are the problem more than anything. They should throw out the pile of charges put on one simple “crime” but they’re making big money off it just like everyone else. It’s job security.

    • Yes, the real problem is passing a law that makes it illegal to cross the street other than the arbitrary way devised by some social engineer. Every law is predicated by the words ‘or we’ll kill you’. Every piece of legislation should have these words tacked on to the end.

      • And the social engineers over at streetsblog (think tor linked them) just have a different way of telling us how to behave or else. They did not like Hans Monderman concepts there. https://www.wired.com/2004/12/traffic/
        Basically road anarchy through thoughful design. No signs, no signals. No cops.

    • I came up with a short version for all that: laws are for those bad people over there.

      Ever notice that when some law is enforced upon some sympathetic character its a news story? Doesn’t matter what it is. Small or large it’s always about how the government is going after this sympathetic character. Of course it’s perfectly acceptable to use that same law as weapon against the people that won’t be protected socially. Americans love law to work like this. To be enforced based on where a person is in the social order or by how well the person is liked by others.

      The same guy who habitually drives ten over will have no sympathy for someone who gets ticketed for doing the same thing. Because in their minds the cop is enforcing the law on those who it deserves to be enforced upon. But if it is enforced on them or someone like them suddenly its an outrage, making quota, or whatever. This is why when some clovertastic person says that traffic enforcement cameras should be everywhere I say go ahead and do it. Not because I’ve suddenly gone statist but because the machines have no discretion. The ten over type will rack up tickets fast or have to drive the aggrivatingly slow speed limit he demanded.

      All laws are selectively enforced and people like it this way. The best way to break that is universal full enforcement.

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