US reaction to water-dousing attack on NYPD reveals double standards

By Zheng Qi, Yang Jun, People’s Daily

Steven Larosa, 35, was recently arrested by New York police for allegedly dousing two NYPD traffic enforcement agents in Queens days before.

The man is facing harassment and obstructing governmental administration charges.

NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill confirmed the information and stressed that “this is unacceptable.”

In the US, it’s a common sense that the authoritativeness of a policeman’s law enforcement right must not be violated, and the police officers would never hesitate before they stop the acts that disrespect their authoritativeness or threaten their personal safety. Such acts are not tolerated by the public, either.

“Use your discretion — make arrests when necessary — and know that you have our support and full confidence,” NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan tweeted to express support for his officers.

New York local media, citing a police memo, said that “Police officers are not expected to tolerate conduct that may cause risk of injury to themselves or the public, interferes with performance of their duties, or tampers with or damages their uniform, equipment or other department property.”

NYPD Chief of Patrol Rodney Harrison stressed that “there is a line that cannot be crossed.”

The dousing case triggered heated discussion on US social media. Many people said such practices that hurt the interests of the police must be stopped.

“He needs to be arrested for assaulting an officer! What are we waiting for?” a Twitter user named Mila Frosty replied to a Wall Street Journal’s relevant report. “Show some respect, some class, some honor. People in the United States should know that if it wasn’t for men and women in blue it would have been a mayhem,” another Twitter user replied.

Politicians also made their voices on the case. “It’s not acceptable for anyone to interfere with the NYPD when they’re effectuating an arrest,” said mayor of New York Bill de Blasio. “Throwing things at NYPD officers is not only not acceptable, it can lead to charges,” the mayor added.

De Blasio’s predecessor Rudy Giuliani warned that crime would not decrease as long as officers are in this environment. “The way you reduce crime is to have police officers with high morale,” Giuliani said. “That uniform should be respected.”

To crack down upon such actions, New York Assemblymen Mike LiPetri and Mike Riley immediately announced a proposed bill that will make it a felony to throw or spray water or any other substance on an on-duty police or peace officer. The charge would be punishable by up to 4 years in prison.

“We must send a strong message that such acts will not be tolerated and I am confident that this bill provides law enforcement the tools they need to properly react,” LiPetri said.

“We employ police forces to maintain the potentially fragile existence of order. And when established law and order break down, criminal elements in our midst sense opportunity and become emboldened,” said James A. Gagliano, law enforcement analyst of CNN in a recent article. Civil disorder, anti-social behavior, and blatant disrespect for law enforcement must not be tolerated anywhere in America, the article noted.

The American society’s reaction to the water-dousing attack indicated the zero-tolerance of the country for the assaults on police officers. As a matter of fact, to safeguard the authoritativeness of police officers is a basic principle of not only the US, but also every legal state. And it is a bottom line that should never be crossed in every corner of the world.

Unfortunately, the US is a country that has long adopted double standards. It never allows its own citizens to tread on the authority of the rule of law, but describes the civilized law enforcement of the policemen in other countries as “oppressing” the so-called “peaceful protest”. What’s more, the US government is even indulging the criminals of other countries.

Such strong comparison will only reveal the arrogance and prejudices, hypocrisy and cold-bloodedness, as well as selfishness and hegemony of the US.