Of YouTube and bike cops
“Is it getting to the point where the police are allowed to do this to people and get away with it?” asks one fan in a YouTube posting titled “Bands Assulted [sic] By Cops!! This Is Unfair!!” Could it be that the regularly viewed behavior of police officers in PBVs is teaching young suburban Americans to regard the police with hostility unimaginable in previous generations?
There’s one last lesson to be learned from the PBV phenom: Recording (and/or Tweeting about) brutality isn’t enough.
The most disgusting shot in the naked guy video isn’t the dropped knee to the gut or the frenzied Tasering. It’s a long pan shot of the crowd. There must be at least 100 people watching (or filming or Tweeting or texting) while a defenseless man is brutalized. Many in the crowd are shouting. Some of them sound angry and disgusted. But not one person steps forward to address the police officers directly. No one tries to help. “Festivalgoers Save Naked Man From Out-of-Control Cops” would’ve been a much better video.
Savage Love: Sondheim is solace