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Old 05-19-2009, 09:38 PM   #5
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,339

I think cops tend to vary, like people in general. Lots of people, if you put them in a postion where they felt like they had power, would get all "respect mah authoriteh!". (heh, shawn, was it you who used to have that Cartman sig?) Of course, any profession whose practitioners get to exert power may collect a bit more than its share of people who are attracted to exactly that aspect. On the other hand, that may be counterbalanced at least somewhat by people who are attracted to the profession for better reasons. At any rate, there have always been some cops who are complete assholes in certain situations. Take a look at old footage of cops beating up peaceful equal rights protesters in the 1950s and 1960s, for example.

In general, I doubt that cops themselves, as people, have on the whole gotten worse since 9/11 in some way that's very different from how it effected everyone else. They are, however, getting more instructions from their superiors to be on the lookout for suspicious activity, and that combined with the general rise in fear and anxiety among people since 9/11 may embolden some of the worse cops to act harsher than they might otherwise act, and may make the better cops less confident about objecting to such behavior among their peers.
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