Anti-Cop Rhetoric Has Deadly Consequences

Published on July 18th, 2016

By Michael Cutler
July 18, 2016

Administration's attacks on police character have emboldened murderers

Once again police officers have been ambushed — this time the venue is Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Seven officers were shot, three of them fatally.

It must be presumed that this attack was premeditated.

Where are the fines for the leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement who have organized riots, and stoked violence against police?

This comes on the heels of the shooting of police officers in Dallas, Texas, in which 11 police officers were shot; five died.

It is too early to know for sure, but this attack bears all the markings of a lethal cop-targeted ambush inspired by anti-police rhetoric and sentiment.

Over the course of the last several months, Black Lives Matter demonstrators have marched in cities around the United States calling for the killing of police officers. Traditionally, in describing our First Amendment, it is said that freedom of speech

does not include yelling “Fire!” in a crowded theater when there is no fire. Yet nothing was done in those cities where those demonstrators called for the killing of police officers.

Words have impact and, in fact, inciting to riot is a violation of law.

Here are the elements of this felony under federal law:

Title 18 U.S. Code § 2101 — Riots begins with the following:

"Whoever travels in interstate or foreign commerce or uses any facility of interstate or foreign commerce, including, but not limited to, the mail, telegraph, telephone, radio, or television, with intent —

  1. to incite a riot; or
  2. to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on a riot; or
  3. to commit any act of violence in furtherance of a riot; or
  4. to aid or abet any person in inciting or participating in or carrying on a riot or committing any act of violence in furtherance of a riot; and who either during the course of any such travel or use or thereafter performs or attempts to perform any other overt act for any purpose specified in subparagraph (A), (B), (C), or (D) of this paragraph— [1]

Shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned not more than five years, or both."

But where are the fines for the leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement who have organized riots, and stoked violence against police? Where is the condemnation of liberal politicians like Hillary Clinton who have cheered them on? Where is the prison time for the scores of people who took to Twitter in the aftermath of Dallas to celebrate the tragic loss of five officers and call for even more killing — now manifest in Baton Rouge?


The president himself has frequently vilified police officers, going back to the beginning of his administration — and most recently, he turned a memorial service for five Dallas police officers into yet another opportunity to focus on police shootings. Members of Congress turned hearings surrounding the Clinton email scandal into a forum to suggest there is endemic racism in the ranks of the police. Reckless statements like these by our leaders can incite individuals to act in unthinkable ways.

Let's be clear — any needless loss of life is unacceptable. However, a false narrative has been created about police shootings. A subsequent thorough investigation conducted at the behest of President Obama by the FBI and the Justice Department into the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, found no wrongdoing on the part of Police Officer Darren Wilson, who shot Brown. That incident in no small way ignited the Black Lives Matter movement.

Police officers and, indeed, all law enforcement officers, are held accountable for their actions. They form that vital "Thin Blue Line" that protects our people and our nation. We have hundreds of thousands of police officers across the United States who have millions of interactions with the civilian population each day. The great majority of our law enforcement officers exemplify the best of America and its values, routinely going into harm's way to protect innocent lives.

Nature's laws are immutable, but our legislated laws are not. Without law enforcement officers, our laws would be meaningless. Our law enforcement officers uphold the Constitution and enforce our laws.

Consequently, our very way of life depends on our law enforcement officers.

Our nation's leaders, irrespective of their political affiliations, need to speak with one voice, unifying Americans in support of our valiant law enforcement officers, and "dialing down the heat" during these turbulent times.

Michael W. Cutler is a retired INS senior special agent and a senior fellow at CAPS (Californians for Population Stabilization). Cutler's career with the INS spanned some 30 years and he has provided expert witness testimony at more than a dozen congressional hearings.



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