Disproportionate Reaction To Death of Mountie
There are about 160,000 road accidents every year in Canada. According to the Transportation Board of Canada, over 2800 to 2900 people are killed every year. It happens so much it is normalized in our society, downplayed or ignored. Yet we are expected to stop our lives and remember public servants such as the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) or Vancouver Police Department (VPD) if they have the the misfortune of dieing or being injured in a vehicle accident. We feel pressured by the media to feel sad and honour them as a hero or a fallen comrade because they risked their lives, as we have seen countless times in Canada and around the world. It is in these instances that we forget about the countless people who have experienced police brutality and the numerous ones killed by the police.
On early Tuesday morning (November 11) we saw the same thing played out when Surrey RCMP Const. Adrian Oliver died when his unmarked cruiser collided with a a transport truck. On average, 49 people will die each week in vehicle related accidents. On November 19, a cyclist in nearby Nanaimo died due to a collision with a motorist. We and the media did not stop to mourn him. Only local media picked up the story. There will be no photo galley of his funeral posted on major news agencies. I am sure that just like the biker it is sad for his friends and family, but would your employer lower their flag and have a huge ceremonial send off for the fellow worker or would it make national headlines. Sure it may make some headlines but Ottawa is not going to have a huge funeral and ceremonial sendoff for the lost employee. The reality is this is when hierarchy and notoriety takes its place. If Stephen Harper died or any other members of parliament died it would be worldwide news. If any other citizen died it would just be that areas news and then life slowly continuing. It is in these instances that the government and media creates a spectacle around a cop dieing and reaffirms the public that they are hero’s and should be remembered as just that and any reality around what the cop did during their career is irrelevant because it would be disrespectful to say the truth.
At this time people also forget that police are the same people that constitutionally use excessive force daily. They are the same cops that sexually assaulted other female mounties. They are the same ones who kill in the name of their and the public's safety. They are humans until they put on a uniform and a badge. It is at this time that they are a tool of the state. Nothing more, nothing less. Just two days after the Mountie died, a Vancouver Police Officer used his taser to subdue someone hurting themselves. He was taken to the hospital and later died. A police watchdog ,which is just a bunch of retired cops, will investigate the incident. This has since vanished from major headlines. After all, its just a civilian that died.