Tuesday Hamilton Police were dispatched to a “person-in-crisis” call on James Street North near the Armoury. There they came across a man in distress wielding a knife. Photos of the scene show a taser on the street, which presumably was deployed without effect. Police then moved in and somehow managed to subdue the individual, but not before three of them sustained stab wounds to the face and neck. Luckily all three officers are going to recover. The perpetrator is in custody. Last night the US news networks were running a story about a man gunned down by police in Columbus Ohio for brandishing a cell phone. If the James Street North incident had been repeated in any number of American cities, the 24 year-old perpetrator would have been killed in a hail of bullets. Those Hamilton Police officers who moved in to subdue the man with the knife made a decision not to use deadly force. They moved in probably aware there was a likelihood that somebody was going to get cut. It’s hard to imagine what the outcome would have been if, instead of police officers, a team of social workers had been dispatched.
Then last week, Halton Police issued a release about a domestic incident, where a woman called a women’s crisis number to say she was in fear of violence from her partner. The woman hung up abruptly, no doubt because the violent individual had appeared, and police were dispatched. They managed to get the woman and her kids to safety. Almost as an afterthought, the Halton Police news release said they perform similar rescues of abused women 150 times a month. That’s about five a day.
When people talk about de-funding the police they need to consider incidents like the ones described here and ask themselves what life would be like if the police were to be de-funded. Lately there have been a spate of mainstream and social media comments by supporters of the de-fund movement who, apparently embarrassed by the unworkability of de-funding, try to explain it away as not-really de-funding, but simply a reallocation of resources. That’s an after-the-fact attempt at rationalizing that which is irrational. No, that’s not what these protestors want. They want the police to cease to exist. That’s why nobody other than virtue-signalers is paying attention to them.