Let me start with the points I hope we agree on. Masks shouldn’t be mandatory. There’s a heck of a lot of exploitation of governmental and bureaucratic power going on right now, especially in the Socialist State of Victoriastan, with selective attention to cherry picked “experts” despite the significant, known health and mortality risks of universal lock down.
But I don’t want to spend any more words on that. Hopefully we can agree – and too many don’t – we shouldn’t be little Dictator Dans running around and accusing lock down dissenters of risking lives. Standing on the graves of lives tragically lost to a pandemic to make your point is gross emotional manipulation.
But being able to recognise and criticise the immense government overreach doesn’t indemnify you from all the other laws necessary for civil society. If you get to pick and choose which laws you want to obey and which laws you don’t agree with, you’re no better than Dictator Dan. You’re just stuck in the ditch on the extreme other side of the road. You’re Bunnings Karen.
If the law says wear a mask and you sincerely believe you don’t need to, maybe you’re right, maybe you’re wrong. At least comply with the letter of the law and do whatever it takes to stay out of trouble.
But don’t let that be the end of it. Use all your remaining freedom to advocate for political change and bring pressure to bear on those seeking re-election. If you’re in a minority, so be it. The alternative to democratic change is just your tyranny instead of theirs, and that makes you no better than the neofascists who were masking their faces long before Dictator Dan said it was cool (along with curfew and home detention).
So I want to talk about the Bunnnings Karen portrayed in the video below. She’s as much a drongo as Dictator Dan, except instead of tyranny, she’s advocating anarchy – complete lawlessness.
What neither you nor I have sufficient evidence to comment on is what happened before the video started rolling. I certainly place no confidence in the testimony of the self-righteous losers who feel morally justified in their torrent of abuse and assault towards police.
In the worst case hypothetical scenario, the male officer – hypothetically – may have suddenly and without warning or prior conversation laid his hands upon this woman’s neck. It’s possible, but the probability of that happening are astronomically remote.
What the video first reveals is the woman violently struggling with the policeman who is trying his best to restrain her. She flings fists at him, and then kicks at him and his female colleague. I’m not sure why they weren’t tazing her. By the time you’re assaulting police all bets should be off, in my mind.
The minute you resist police the mask thing – if that is why they stopped you initially – is long gone as the reason for their further and continued attention and use of force if necessary. Don’t be an utter moron and escalate your interaction with police into violence. You can’t possibly be so stupid as to think that could possibly end well for you in any universe.
I’m not going to go into the video blow by blow, but if these suspects were related to me I’d be deeply ashamed of their behaviour and apologetic to the police involved.
All police deserve our deepest respect, best manners and cooperation. Of course there’s gonna be wrongly issued fines. Of course there’s gonna be laws you disagree with they are nonetheless charged with enforcing. They don’t get to pick and choose any more than you do, reasonable discretion aside. Again, once you escalate, the window for discretion they maybe should’ve used is quickly and firmly shut.
Can I be clearer? If you assault and threaten police you are the worst piece of human filth there is and I will stand with them in however much force they deem necessary to feel safe and guarantee they go home to their families each night.
If they do you wrong, cooperate in the moment and pursue your options later. Make a formal complaint to their station, or the State HQ. If you got video of it, share it with the media. Complain to your state or federal MP and ask them to advocate for you, and the fine may be waived. Resist the fine in court if you feel the law is on your side.
Police have never been more accountable than in the age of video cameras in everyone’s pocket and rigorous integrity and professional standards.
Of course there’s dozen maybe hundreds of brutal cops drunk on power who need to be held to account and drummed out of the force. No doubt – but you are not their judge and jury and you don’t get to resist arrest, threaten or assault them. If you do, whatever happens next is entirely your responsibility, and right thinking people will prefer every other cop knows we the public will have their back instead of demanding their head when a lowlife puts them in positions no one is paid enough to have to endure.
Don’t be a Dictator Dan. Don’t be a Bunnings Karen. The third option is just be a decent human, respect the rule of law, and robustly advocate for a better democracy and objective justice – without violence or other lawlessness.
UPDATE: Victoria Police have confirmed the woman did not receive a fine for not wearing a mask. All she had to do was tell them she had an exemption. Saying so after letting fists fly is the wrong order of things. The Victoria Police statement said:
Police made the decision to arrest the woman after she failed to provide her name and address.
She then became physically aggressive and kicked a female officer to the upper body.
The woman continued to resist arrest and had to be taken to ground before being arrested.
She has been charged with resist police and assault police, will go to court, and the arrest is being reviewed.
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Dave Pellowe is a Christian writer & commentator, founder of The Good Sauce, convener of the annual Australian Church And State Summit and host of Good Sauce's weekly The Church And State Show, also syndicated on ADH TV. Since 2016 Dave has undertaken the mission of arming Christians to influence culture through events from Perth to Auckland, videos, podcasts and articles published in multiple journals across Australia and New Zealand. [more]