In a column published by the Washington Post on Tuesday entitled, "I'm a cop. If you don't want to get hurt, don't challenge me," a 17 year veteran of the Los Angeles Police Department and professor of homeland security at Colorado Tech University, Sunil Dutta, responds to the violence in Ferguson with a controversial column in which he claims that most people can avoid being the victims of police brutality by being more cooperative, regardless of the situation.
"Even though I might sound harsh and impolitic," writes Dutta, "here is the bottom line: if you do not want to get shot, tased, pepper-sprayed, struck with a baton or thrown to the ground, just do what I tell you. Don't argue with me, don't call me names, don't tell me that I can't stop you, don't say I'm a racist pig, don't threaten that you'll sue me and take away my badge. Don't scream at me that you pay my salary, and don't even think of aggressively walking towards me. Most field stops are complete in minutes. How difficult is it to cooperate for that long?"
Dutta argues that citizens have a better chance of fighting police brutality after the fact, and not during it, even though he admits that arguing with a cop or being verbally abusive towards a cop are not illegal. "If you believe (or know) that the cop stopping you is violating your rights or is acting like a bully, I guarantee that the situation will not become easier if you show your anger or resentment."
Dutta's evident lack of sympathy towards citizens who are quickly tiring of aggressive police tactics has garnered little support among First Amendment advocates, despite his call for reforms in how internal investigations are handled and his insistence that police-mounted cameras be used to record all interactions with citizens.
Photo: 11 Alive, Business Insider
Dutta suggests that citizens comply fullt with cops and complain later about brutality.