This past week has tacked on more examples of politicians using law enforcement to stifle dissent among unsatisfied constituents. NY’s Mayor Bloomberg, for instance, was quoted referring to the NYPD as his “own army”. “But other facets of this story have been developing behind the scenes. Could Operation SHIELD and Ray Lewis raise the “wind that shakes the parley”? Chris Faraone writes in the Boston Phoenix:
As Occupy camps from coast to coast face evictions — and in many cases have already been pushed out of parks and plazas like so much human trash — it’s clear that the institutional response to the movement is escalating dangerously. Likewise, relations between police and activists seem to be deteriorating, as non-violent protesters continue to be arrested almost daily.
But as tensions build between Occupiers and Big Brother, what’s also true is that individual officers are increasingly concerned about their role in combating Occupy. Even in cities where the overall police response has been barbaric, there’s a growing sense that cops who’ve been charged with breaking camps are unnerved by such orders.
Earlier this week, Los Angeles authorities avoided a riot by working with protesters, and even thanking them publicly for demonstrating their right to free speech. On a smaller scale, last month in Oregon an officer was seen sobbing in his combat gear while raiding a Portland encampment. In October, Albany police — along with state troopers — refused to arrest protesters despite pressure from the city’s mayor and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.
At least one Occupier believes that such sentiments are not anomalous. Calling himself Danny — he wouldn’t reveal his true identity — he created a movement-within-a-movement, Occupy Police (OcPo), designed to be an outlet for officers of all ranks, everywhere, to speak openly about Occupy.
Continued at the Boston Phoenix