United States Attorney General William Barr made some startling comments last night. While speaking to law enforcement personnel at a Department of Justice awards event, Barr warned that communities that protest against law enforcement could no longer be protected by police.
As he stated, “Today, the American people have to focus on something else, which is the sacrifice and the service that is given by our law enforcement officers. And they have to start showing, more than they do, the respect and support that law enforcement deserves.”
Then adding, “If communities don’t give that support and respect, they might find themselves without the police protection they need.”
That seemingly triggered a tidal wave in response. With civil rights activists quickly condemned Barr’s remarks, saying his comments are “revealing.”
Jeb Fain, spokesman for American Bridge 21st Century said, “Barr’s words are as revealing as they are disturbing ― flagrantly dismissive of the rights of Americans of color, disrespectful to countless law enforcement officers who work hard to serve their communities, and full of a continuing disregard for the rule of law.”
Beyond that Barr declared, “When police officers roll out of their precincts every morning, there are no crowds along the highway cheering them on and when you go home at the end of the day, there’s no ticker-tape parade.”
Plus compared police officers to soldiers returning home from the Vietnam War. As he drew a parallel between the two. “In the Vietnam era, our country learned a lesson. I remember that our brave troops who served in that conflict weren’t treated very well in many cases when they came home, and sometimes they bore the brunt of people who were opposed to the war,” Barr said, according to the Post. “The respect and gratitude owed to them was not given. And it took decades for the American people finally to realize that.”
Then railed against Americans who protest police officers, saying they should stop because law enforcement is “fighting an unrelenting, never-ending fight against criminal predators in our society.”
Though AG Barr did not say exactly what “communities” he was referring to critics said the comments were implicitly directed at communities of color, where long standing issues of trust over police brutality and racial profiling have persisted.
Back in August, he proclaimed to a Fraternal Order of Police gathering citizens should have “zero tolerance for resisting police.” As well as denouncing”district attorneys that style themselves as ‘social justice’ reformers.”