March 26, 2009
Here's the unedited police video of Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats being detained by a Dallas police officer while his mother-in-law was inside the hospital drawing her last breaths.
Now, I don't want professional athletes to get any preferential treatment from the law, but is it too much to ask that they get the "normal human being treatment"? Is it too much to ask for even the most basic of human compassion?
You can see it all for yourself in the above video. The officer refusing for about five minutes to even acknowledge what Moats is saying about his mother-in-law. His making it a point to inform Moats of all the ways he has the power to make his life difficult. The complete lack of sensitivity.
It's even worse than what you see there, though. What you don't see is that the officer drew his gun on Moats and his wife as they explained that a family member was inside the hospital dying.
I'm trying to see the cop's point of view here, but I just can't. Where's the danger? Where's the great risk to society? Did Moats drive to a hospital parking lot as part of an elaborate ruse to get away with cautiously rolling through a red light? At a certain point, doesn't an officer have to step back and say, "What am I doing here? Am I helping or hurting? How does this protect and serve anything other than my own inflated sense of authority?"
There had to be something he could do to get Moats out of there quicker. There had to be a better option than to put on 14-minute display of his mighty authority as a police officer.
The Dallas police department seems to be in agreement, too, as they've reassigned the officer to a Farva-like dispatch job. The ticket issued to Moats was dismissed, and a Dallas police lieutenant said of the officer in question, "There were some things that were said that were disturbing, to say the least."
Should the guy be fired? As always, opinions vary. Some say yes, some say no. Maybe it's punishment enough that the guy's going to have to live with the fact that he denied a man the ability to hold a loved one's hand as she passed away. But for that to qualify as punishment, the officer would have to have some sense of human compassion, and maybe I missed it, but I see absolutely no sign of that in the video.
A dispatch job sounds about right. Either that, or something in the department of cleaning cells. I think it was pretty clearly demonstrated in that video that he lacks the decision-making ability to be on the streets. I don't know if I'd trust that guy to check parking meters.
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