The darker side of what people do

Watch how this escalates.

FacebookEmailPinterestGoogle GmailShare/Bookmark

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA, The future and our choices. Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to The darker side of what people do

  1. RBrown says:

    Interesting that the cop (or security guard) who decided to use his nightstick on the defenseless man on the ground was the first to flee when the crowd arrived.

    No one abuses power like a coward.

  2. RichR says:

    When sports become your religion, any offense taken is tantamount to heresy. Zeal can then become an excuse for greater injustices.

  3. Violence breeds violence.

  4. Dr. Eric says:

    I can’t remember which class it was in, but we were told that there are more injuries per player in soccer/futbol than in any other sport, and that didn’t include injuries inflicted by soccer hooligans either!

  5. Geoffrey says:

    The announcer was speaking Portuguese, and I saw Portuguese writing on the uniforms. People wearing something that says “Espirito Santo” should know better.

  6. Jordanes says:

    Was that a soccer game where a fight broke out, or fight where a soccer game broke out?

    Seriously, this make a good case for banning booze at soccer matches, or at most other sports. Looked like all the mob members were men (not surprising) and probably well lubricated with liquor.

    As for where this was, I understand soccer is huge in Brazil, so this could have been in Brazil or Portugal, I guess.

  7. Brian Walden says:

    “Interesting that the cop (or security guard) who decided to use his nightstick on the defenseless man on the ground was the first to flee when the crowd arrived.

    No one abuses power like a coward.”

    Rbrown, Do you have any evidence before you make accusations that the officer was abusing power and beating a defenseless man? It appeared that the officers were trying to put handcuffs or some other type of restraint on the man who ran onto the field and he was struggling to get away. It was very difficult to see exactly what was happening, but to me it looked like the officers struck him only after each of his attempts to wriggle free. When the mob attacked, the man was able to escape with both hands free – which suggests that he was indeed resisting the officers efforts to restrain him.

    Or are you saying that the officers had no right to accost the man in the first place? Any normal person should know that if you run onto the field at a major sporting event you’re going to get tackled by security and they’re going to use the necessary amount of force to remove you from the premises and turn you over to the proper authorities.

  8. Ummm… all I saw was a bunch of cops trying to beat up a man on the ground who had apparently done nothing more than run onto the field, when other people in the stands decided to come to his aid. Good for them.

    ~cmpt

  9. St. Rafael says:

    Brian,

    When you have four grown man on a suspect, it does not take a nightstick to restrain him. They had enough manpower. The nightstick was excessive force for a man already on the groud with four guards.

    It was pretty sad that the guard who tried to restrian the other nightstick guard was the one the crowd beat up. The poor guard turned his back to the crowd and was knocked down. Run for your life when you see a mob.

    The crowd gave into the worse of human nature through anger and vengence.

    Fr. is

  10. St. Rafael says:

    To finish my last sentence in my previous post:
    Fr. is right violence begets violence.

  11. Brian Walden says:

    My conclusions were based on the assumption that cops (and people in general) wouldn’t beat a man in front of that many witnesses – so I figured they must have been trying to put him in handcuffs or those plastic strips or something like that when he was on the ground. I also didn’t have the sound on (I’m not sure if that made a difference), and the way the soccer players appeared to defend the police when fans started coming onto the field led me to think that they weren’t doing anything unusual.

    Apparently I interpreted everything wrong.

  12. Paul Jones says:

    Undoubtedly, by the accent, it was in Portugal.

  13. Brian O'Gallagher, Boston says:

    and I thought hearing about a Bruins fan urinate on a Habs fan in the Garden was bad

  14. Michael says:

    Mob violence is bad. When someone wears a uniform it is A-O-K for him to do a little whackin’ when the plebes get out of line.

  15. LeonG says:

    If this had happened in the streets we would have seen Molotov cocktails and eventually tear gas.In some parts of SE Asia, machetes would have been drawn.

  16. Alan says:

    I agree with Christopher M. P. Tomaszewski, all that man did was run across the pitch and they were beating him on the ground, stabbing him with his stick. Those cops deserved it in my opinion.

  17. dcs says:

    From some of the comments I expected to see a huge riot. But there were not that many participants and it was all over fairly quickly. I feel especially bad for the cop that was hurt since he did seem to be trying to stop the other who was stabbing the fan with his nightstick.

  18. RBrown says:

    My conclusions were based on the assumption that cops (and people in general) wouldn’t beat a man in front of that many witnesses – so I figured they must have been trying to put him in handcuffs or those plastic strips or something like that when he was on the ground.
    I also didn’t have the sound on (I’m not sure if that made a difference), and the way the soccer players appeared to defend the police when fans started coming onto the field led me to think that they weren’t doing anything unusual.
    Apparently I interpreted everything wrong.
    Comment by Brian Walden

    You didn’t need the sound. It’s easy to see the man on the right taking his stick and poking him with it.

    There are a lot of very good, diligent people in law enforcement, but I wouldn’t count him among them.

  19. Cel says:

    It certainly did escalate and get out of control but generally the duty to keep things from spinning out of control rests most heavily with those who hold authority. Here, clearly the officer with the tomfa style night stick was doing “something”. This choice of action, regardless of if it was justified or not, was clearly a poor choice. All choices, good or bad, bear consequences. My point is that it wasn’t just a random blow up, it could have been avoided from the beginning if there had been more restraint shown. Lots of officers are very good and controlled, however, with the general decline in moral sense in our society, fewer police officers are showing moral self restraint. People generally are becoming more distrustful of authority and this is very bad for our societies. Here in the U.S. not very many years ago middle class people almost universally trusted police officers. I don’t get that sense as much any more. More often now the respect shown comes from fear knowing it is simply your word against the officer’s, and that your fate rides in large part on the officers whim. Again, not universally, just more often that once was. This break down in trust between civil authorities and average citizens is very troubling.

    More specifically, looking close at the video, the officer was jabbing using a lot of force from his shoulder and upper arm, the force was being fully translated to the tomfa by the grip he had on the cross member and he was using a very small surface area to strike. That means that there was a considerable amount of force being applied to a very small area. Easily enough force to break bones or kill someone if they were struck an a sensitive location. Luckily the guy wasn’t badly hurt as he got up quickly once released. However, I do think that bystanders would be justified in fearing that deadly force was possibly being applied. In that respect, I cannot blame anyone for choosing to come to the rescue of this guy regardless of the authority carried by the officers. No police officer has the right to use deadly excessive and possibly deadly force against someone already restrained. This looked very bad. No doubt, others entered the fray simply looking for a fight. And certainly none of the officers deserved to be kicked half to death by a mob, not even the officer doing the beating who appeared to make it off the field.

    My sense from this admittedly limited evidence is that the officer unwisely chose abused his power to what appears, after the fact, to be a rather small degree. What he did was wrong but not so very serious as evidenced by the guy being able to get up so quickly. However, given the situation, even a small wrong can turn into a big deal quickly, obviously. It was independently wrong for probably most who entered the field to get involved. Guilt is not a zero sum game. It is not EITHER the officer’s fault or the fans fault. They bare their faults independently. Further, those who entered the field only to simply rescue someone from a perceived injustice were not necessarily wrong at all nor necessarily were the three other officers who were appeared to be only holding the guy down.

    The moral of the story is that restraint and high moral and ethical standards, especially from persons of authority, are absolutely indispensable to a civilized society. Without these things we don’t have trust and without trust we regress into this kind of barbarism.

  20. Cel says:

    I smite thee with my wall of text.
    Bwahahahahahaha.