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Tuesday, April 07, 2009 

The Citizens Are Watching Big Brother - Police Forces Better Understand The Power Of The Citizens That They Work For!

Editorial: Cops do themselves no favours harrassing Province photographer
"It is not Big Brother who is watching every move of every citizen; rather, it is every citizen doing his or her damnedest to watch Big Brother. Understandably, this does not sit well with the authorities — in particular, the police, who now must wonder what was or was not captured on camera every time they make a public bust.

If the police routinely acted by the letter of the law, then it wouldn’t matter what was captured with a cell camera, would it? Unfortunately, as we all know too well, police aren’t exactly embracing cameras in the hands of anyone these days — professional journalist or Joe Citizen with a cellphone."

Statement from Province photographer Jason Payne
Jason Payne explains police conduct as they confiscated his work camera after a man was shot by police.

At approximately 5:20 p.m. I heard a loud sound from outside my house, went to the window and looking out, saw two uniformed VPD members with a dog, jogging north on Jackson St. to the Union St. intersection. I grabbed my camera and ran towards the Union/Jackson intersection. As I got there it was a chaotic scene and I couldn’t discern exactly what was going on although I knew something significant was happening by the amount of police officers in the immediate area. I started photographing — at the corner of Union/Jackson, heading in a northwest direction to Jackson. I was photographing the scene in the parking lot as I walked up Jackson Street.

There was no police tape anywhere. I noticed a police officer talking to a woman on the sidewalk — the west side of Jackson Street — and when I asked her what happened, she said something along the lines of “the police have shot a man.” At that point, the female officer told me to stop what I was doing and leave, and she gripped my shoulder and shoved me backwards. I brushed her arm away from me, telling her I am a press photographer for The Province newspaper and I had a right to be standing there, taking photos. A male officer arrived and said “you can’t be here,” and something to effect of “you’re obstructing justice,” and he was going to take away my camera. As this was happening we were backing up and entered a private front yard on Jackson Street. I told the officer a number of times I was a press photographer and would not give him my camera.
.... Read More from the Vancouver Province .... and from the Globe & Mail ....

-More Buckdog on 'watching Big Brother' ... in this case - the Calgary City Police!

-And even MORE Buckdog on 'watching Big Brother ... this time abuse of a young teenage boy ...

Progressive Bloggers

Photograph of Vancouver City Police Officer manhandling photographer from The Province was taken by a conscientious citizen journalist and submitted to the paper.

Similar incidents have happened elsewhere and I suspect it's because they don't want witnesses to the "liberties" they take with their subjects. Remember Rodney King?

I've said it before, there's a thug mentality pervading many police forces and many of them are more judgemental rather than interested in doing true spadework.

I've seen situation where the police come out and make accusation to a person rather than ask questions. This puts them into a "judge" mode rather than "investigative" mode.

Of course, one of the problems is the decay of our society with so many single parents and the influences of television and movies that embolden viewers to do things that they normally wouldn't . If you don't believe this, remember how many people hurt themselves replicating stunts seen on Real People, That's Incredible and other reality TV shows back in the days when America was in the dumps because of the US/Iran hostage situation. These programs were created to lift people's spirits and in so doing caused people to do dangerous and foolhardy stunts. Just as people do this sort of thing so do police.

The police like to claim and assert a sovereignty over all persons at a situation and that isn't right. They've been arrogating too much to themselves and we have to find ways to remind them that they work for us and not the other way round.


My current craft project is a hat I can wear my camera in.

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