Are the police a separate caste system then the general population and is that acceptable?

Looking at this:

It appears that the police may have resorted to privileged status and there are many such other potential cases of that happening, It the US a casts society? Is there a privileged class and a under class in the US of A???

Yes they kind of are, in a way. And no it’s not acceptable.

But then, as far as I know we’ve yet to discover an effective inoculation against power’s corrupting influence. So we’re kind of stuck with it.

And it ain’t just cops! I’d wager you could say the same of politicians!

Hmmm… if Massachusetts State law permits “public officials” to be videotaped while they’re doing their job at that workplace how far does that go?

If cops are considered “public officials” then how about teachers?

Can I videotape all classes, all teacher’s meetings, discussions between teachers and administrators as well as any conversations between teachers or between a teacher and a student so long as this is being done on school grounds.

If teachers have the legal authority to assault students, taser them, haul them off to jail or shoot them dead, then sure. Otherwise, you’re claiming a false equivalency.

Lesson learned: Next time you document police abuse, upload to YouTube before you get arrested.

Thank goodness the American media jumps all over any story like this one – imagine, how lawless these cops would act if these stories never came to light.

Well, I know of no jurisdiction in the US where being a policeman is hereditary, so no, they’re not a separate caste.

I’m assuming the OP meant a separate class – not that the police ever display any.

It’s obviously not a caste system. Police officers do not marry other police officers and their children do not grow up to be police officers - at least not routinely.

Do police officers treat other police officers differently than they treat the average person? Probably. But they’re not unique in that. Lawyers, dentists, plumbers, farmers, and people in a bunch of other random professions probably treat members of the same occupation differently than they treat the average person.

I know of one instance where there was a wink-and-a-nod between members of different police forces. An off-duty city cop had been pulled over by a Mountie for excessive speeding on the highway, and just had to flash his badge and was allowed to go on his way. (This was told to me by the speeding cop’s father, so I tend to believe it.) While I don’t particularly like that, there’s bound to be a certain amount of brotherhood among cops as there is in any job or profession, and I don’t find this example especially egregious. There are plenty of cases in the news of cops being arrested by fellow cops for real crimes, so I wouldn’t say they consider themselves in a different class from us commonfolk.

You make it sound like you’re in a third world country with little respect for law and order. Where I come from, I’ve had only one minor negative experience with the police. In a couple of instances, their conduct was exemplary and beyond what I could expect of myself.

Of course the police are neither a caste nor a class, but an occupational category.

Well, if what you’re saying is “Do police get cut more slack than the average citizen when they break the law?” then I’d say yes, probably. Is there anything to do about it? Not really. Who watches the watchman?

Besides, I don’t think it’s as big a problem as some people make it out to be. Sure, you can pull up tons of articles about police abusing people and getting away with it, but the amount of bad cops seems to be overwhelming because journalists never bother to write about the policeman down the street who totally did his job in a safe, ethical manner last Friday. In reality, the number of truly abusive police is infinitesimal in comparison to the number of good ones.

No, this person did not make it sound like that at all… They simply expressed their distaste for policeman by highlighting a fairly accurate quality they have. I’ve rarely seen a cop exhibiting “class” on any episode of Cops or in real life. It’s simply not a job requirement. You would probably find that the aggressive forceful cop, who is an asshole, achieves better results than the polite classy cop, who entertains the perp’s bullshit.

Police should be held to a higher standard than the average person, because of how much power and authority they have. The fact that the cop in this article apparently snapped, and then took his frustration out on the man video taping him, is evidence of one man making poor decisions; nothing more.

Does it capture the general ability and potential for a cop to totally abuse his power? Absolutely. Is it evidence that cops are in a class of their own? No, I don’t think so.

This happens a heck of a lot more than you’d think. Some agencies actually encourage nepotism.

It’s called professional courtesy. It tends to be utilized more by newer/younger officers than veterans. Embarrassing to admit, but when I first got on the job in '82 I must have badged my way out of a dozen tickets. it’s been well over 20 years since I last did it. After some time on the job maturity solidifies and professional ethics dictates that one must be judged at a higher standard and obey traffic laws in the same manner one would enforce on others. I routinely point out to new officers than it is not an acceptable practice, and I get pissed when I pinch a driver who tins me.

“Professional courtesy” is one of those ideas like “tipping” bureaucrats that looks totally acceptable until it’s not–at which point it becomes astonishing that anyone thinks such blatant corruption could ever be okay.

Of course you’re right, that police ought to be held to higher standards if anything (by virtue of being so aware of the law and of the consequences for not following it). Do police codes of ethics call out this behavior specifically?

In the same way that I as a teacher can lose my license if I do something like changing student standardized test answers, it seems like police officers ought to know that asking for or offering a reduction in penalty due to a badge ought to be punishable by loss of said badge.

In that case, the man was released without being charged, and the officer was “suspended without pay for one day and forbidden to take lucrative detail work for another 15 days”.

This is the story of one cop being a dick, and being punished for it. It doesn’t support the idea of police as a separate caste.

Well, I read through the article and I’m not seeing whatever it is you think you are getting at. First off, as others have noted, police are neither a separate caste (which one is born into) or a separate class. Secondly, your own article says this:

As always in these threads, the evidence is pretty scanty, and the article is spun to make what little hay can be made, so you can make of it what you will. To my mind, what little is here doesn’t support the proposition that police officers are a separate caste OR class, or that they are particularly privileged. And, of course, anyone who actually wants to be a police officer (within certain bounds) could, you know, become one and live the high life themselves.

:smack: Or, what Human Action said.

The police and the judiciary in recent years have become quite arrogant and intolerable.

:confused: Relative to when?

In the last few years it has been. Ethics classes in the academy and in-service training has touched on it, pointing out the difficult position the on duty officer is put in when an off duty ID’s himself.

There is also the issue of police /community relations. It simply rubs the public the wrong way knowing an officer will get away with doing what the average person will get tagged for.