Social Question

prescottman2008's avatar

Have you ever thrown rocks at a law enforcement officer?

Asked by prescottman2008 (775points) June 9th, 2010

The unfortunate and tragic death of a 15 year old boy at the US/Mexican border in El Paso made me wonder about his behavior as well as the Border Patrol Agents reaction. I’ve never thrown rocks, large or small at anyone let alone someone armed with a gun. I have been hit with a thrown rock and I can vouch that it isn’t a pleasant feeling. Considering they still stone people to death in some backward countries I’m sure it could even be deadly.

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21 Answers

SmashTheState's avatar

I’m not prepared to answer a question like that in a public forum, but I will say that on the occasions I’ve had to come into physical conflict with “law enforcement officers,” they were trying to massage my scalp with large wooden truncheons.

MRSHINYSHOES's avatar

Never. You’d just be asking for trouble. And sometimes that trouble is not worth it, as in the case of that boy. Law enforcement officers are to be respected.

prescottman2008's avatar

@SmashTheState ,I didn’t want to put anyone on the spot. I’ve had a few run ins with “the law” myself and my reaction has almost always been “verbal” not physical.

shego's avatar

I have never thrown rocks but I accidently hit a cop on the face with a snowball. What a great story. I’m sure if he wasn’t eating to many donuts, he would have caught me.

SmashTheState's avatar

@prescottman2008 Verbal reactions aren’t a viable alternative when you’re facing down a line of angry, violent thugs with shields and clubs who want to use your skull for a piñata.

YARNLADY's avatar

@SmashTheState violent confrontations with the police hardly ever change political policy

chyna's avatar

No, I value my freedom.

SmashTheState's avatar

@YARNLADY “The people in power will not disappear voluntarily, giving flowers to the cops just isn’t going to work. This thinking is fostered by the establishment; they like nothing better than love and nonviolence. The only way I like to see cops given flowers is in a flower pot from a high window.”William S. Burroughs

There are any number of reasons for violent confrontations with police. For example, I am an anarchist, and anarchists believe very strongly in self-defence, both of ourselves and our comrades. This attitude results in less violence in the long run. Where the police don’t think twice about attacking large groups of hippies and peaceniks, they won’t attack anarchists without at least a 3-to-1 numerical superiority and with the liberal application of tear gas and pepper spray. Peace is always maintained by strength, not weakness.

I have also had occasion to engage in violent confrontation with the police for strategic purposes. For example, in 2004, George Bush visited the city where I live. The media would have liked to portray the visit as friendly and successful. Instead, we engaged in hand to hand fighting with police, knocked down two of their lines, and then got 15 minutes live on CNN when we fought our way to the third and final line of riot cops. There was no one between us and Bush at that point but that line of cops and the snipers on the rooftops. When things got really hot, the organizers ordered a general retreat to keep the crowd from getting teargassed. In that case we succeeded in preventing the corporate media from spinning his visit as tacit supprt from a foreign state for Bush’s policies. In fact, it was so successful that Bush, in his address to media, was forced to acknowledge us. He thanked the small handful of supporters who showed up to meet him at the airport, joking, “It was nice to see a few people waving at me with all five fingers.”

Does fighting with riot police change political policy? No. But that’s not what anyone’s trying to accomplish by hitting a riot cop with a brick.

YARNLADY's avatar

@SmashTheState I strongly disapprove of terrorist tactics. I was one of the ‘flower’ people of the 1960’s. I watched the thugs who called themselves demonstrators, throwing bottles at the police. I was never maced, gassed or any other way attacked or damaged. However, I was and still am very active in successfully working within the system to bring about change

SmashTheState's avatar

@YARNLADY You really need to read Ward Churchill’s Pacifism as Pathology. One of the things he notes is that the Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto who fought back against the Nazis, despite being utterly crushed by the might of the Wehrmacht, had a longer lifespan on average than the Jews who walked quietly into the death camps.

I recall seeing a video recently of an anti-war rally at a university in Kalifornia. There were two or three organizers with megaphones surrounded by a hundred or so hippies and peaceniks. A half-dozen cops arrived, walked into the middle of the group, tackled the organizers to the ground, cuffed them, and literally dragged them away. While all this was going on, the peaceniks did nothing but chant “shame shame” and waggle their fingers at the cops. I can guarantee you for an absolute certainty that no cop in his right mind would walk into the middle of a crowd of anachists and start slapping cuffs on people. It just doesn’t occur. The cops aren’t suicidal and they know perfectly well than we aren’t afraid of them. The fact that we’re prepared to defend ourselves prevents violence from occuring. The cops know trying to intimidate us is pointless, so they won’t attack us unless they are prepared to back it up with overwhelming force.

Cruiser's avatar

No the police rarely if ever are the cause of an issue or confrontation and just doing their job. If I have a problem I take it to the source.

YARNLADY's avatar

@SmashTheState Nazis vs Jews – who won?

tinyfaery's avatar

Does family count?

john65pennington's avatar

Here is an answer on the flipside or receipient of rock throwing. in 1968, there was a riot in Nashville. several streets were overun with people protesting equal rights for everyone. being in the middle of the street and attempting to bring calm to everyone, is not a happy feeling, especially when broken bricks are being thrown at you. several officers sustained serious injuries from the flying debris. alone, it was not just the rock throwing that upset us, it was also the meaning behind the rock throwing. these were people that we knew and talked to everyday. it was hard to believe that their disposition could change so suddently. instead of still being friends with each other, the officers were now their enemy. we had a job to do and we did it. when it was all over, Nashville had a new understanding of civil rights, but the officers suffered physical and mental injuries. it was hard for us to understand that since the riots were over, that we were to go back on the streets and still be friendly to the rioters that had assaulted us. honestly, it took a lot of time to heal our physical and mental wounds of that summer in 1968. being hit by a rock not only physically hurts, it hurts and destroys everything you believed in people that you thought were your friends.

tinyfaery's avatar

1968 in TN? The immorality was that of the police. Good for the rock thrower.

prescottman2008's avatar

@tinyfaery I don’t think personal attacks or judgements on personal moral character is helpful to anyone. Like it says, “Those of you without sin may cast the first stone.”

john65pennington's avatar

tinyfaery, were you even around in 1968? if not, you do not have a clue of what you are talking about.

Berserker's avatar

I never have. I’m bound to get in trouble if I do that. The only instance that I’d get violent with anyone would be to defend myself, whether they’re cops or bandits. And even then. I’m a wuss. some years back this girl at work was beating me up and I did absolutely nothing to defend myself. Pretty low on Darwin’s ladder, but eh. XD

crankywithakeyboard's avatar

No. They have guns. It’s as simple as that.

Silhouette's avatar

We threw oranges at one once when we were kids then ran like striped arsed apes and hid in the bushes.

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