“I would contend that discussing police tactics from Martha’s Vineyard is not helpful to ultimately calming the situation.”
Ouch. But Pasco wasn’t done.
The police union head also had objections to Obama’s comments about the police in Ferguson, Mo., following the shooting death of Michael Brown:
“I think what he has to do as president and as a constitutional lawyer is remember that there is a process in the United States and the process is being followed, for good or for ill, by the police and by the county and by the city and by the prosecutors’ office.”
The comment by Obama to which Pasco took issue:
“There’s no excuse for police to use excessive force against peaceful protests or to throw protesters in jail for lawfully exercising their First Amendment rights.”
Peaceful protests? Smashing store-front windows and stealing anything and everything one can steal is a peaceful protest? Throwing Molotov cocktails at police is a peaceful protest? Shooting at a police helicopter is a peaceful protest?
Following up on those comments, Pasco said:
“I’m not there, and neither is the president. That is why we have due process in the United States. And this will all be sorted out over time.
But right now, I haven’t seen anything from afar – and maybe the president has – that would lead me to believe the police are doing anything except to restore order.”
By all accounts, the police in Ferguson have operated with restraint during the five nights of riots. As for Obama, who said in the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting, “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon,” can the same be said?
What about the Cambridge, Massachusetts police officers who had “acted stupidly” arresting Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., only later to be apologized to ahead of the so-called “beer summit”?
“That was totally inappropriate. I am disgraced that he is our commander-in-chief,” Stephen Killion, head of the Cambridge Police Patrol Officer’s Association, said. “He smeared the good reputation of the hard-working men and women of the Cambridge Police Department. It was wrong to do. It was disgraceful.”
The pattern of behavior from the president is clear: If there is a racially charged conflict in American society, Obama will tactfully confirm the biases of those who feel aggrieved, while feigning to be above it all.
This is not the “post-racial presidency” many thought they were voting for when they voted for Barack Obama; instead, they elected a divider and not a uniter. What America and Ferguson, Missouri, need now is leadership that restores calm to a volatile situation that has gotten out-of-control.