- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 31, 2020

The police in Washington, D.C., have just been stripped of much of their protective gear — specifically, their riot gear. Why? Because a man named Karon Hylton, 20, who was driving a moped without a helmet, at times on a sidewalk, was followed by a police cruiser and, while fleeing, crashed into another car and died.

Hylton was Black. He died in a police-related incident.

So as it often follows these days, the city erupted in violent protests.

Four D.C. police officers have already been placed on leave. The city has a policy against police chases, unless there is obvious risk of death or serious injury.

But the city also has a law against driving motorbikes without helmets. Ostensibly, that’s because driving a motorbike without a helmet puts the individual at risk of death or serious injury.

Potato, potahto.

So say the city’s leftist leaders anyway, who knee-jerked their way into tying the hands of police.

“The city is now refusing to allow officers to wear protective helmets, allowing rioters to fire deadly explosives at officers and failing to make arrests of violators of the law,” said police union representative Gregg Pemberton, in a statement about the recent protests. “These new policies not only put our members at risk, they also endanger our communities by pulling the few police we have out of patrol.”

Of course they do.

These policies most definitely endanger the police.

But then again: that’s kind of what they’re supposed to do.

Liberals don’t care so much about protecting police from violence as they do about soothing hurt feelings of violent protesters.

That’s why D.C.’s in a state of riots over a guy who quite possibly died because he recklessly opted against wearing a helmet while recklessly driving a motorbike. Maybe if he had a helmet on his head police wouldn’t have followed him in the first place?

Potato, potahto.

That’s cause-effect common sense thinking.

And that type of logic just has no place in the liberal mind.

If it did, why would so many Democrat-run cities be facing so much thuggery in the streets, and for so long, all the while the leftist-leaning politicos speak of the solution in terms of “defund police?”

Stripping police of their riot gear doesn’t make the riots go away — just as cracking down on Second Amendment rights doesn’t make gun-related crime go away.

Police need their protection from the thugs. And if political leaders won’t allow them this protection, perhaps they should do an “Atlas Shrugged” and leave. Strike. Refuse to protect the public.

Give the people what they want.

That’s what the business magnates did in Ayn Rand’s epic “Atlas Shrugged” after pinhead politicians and bureaucrats regulated away their profits and plotted to steal their creativity. Who is John Galt, anyone?

If police did the same — if they simply picked up and went home, to protect their families and selves from the thuggery and violence and mayhem — well, yes, innocent citizens would suffer. But not for long. It wouldn’t take long for the ensuing chaos to fuel a radical call for law and order.

Politicians would have to listen. Or face a drumming from office and town.

The solution to this madness in the streets masquerading as peaceful, proper First Amendment freedom of speech and assembly could very well be found in a 1950s novel of dystopian society.

Police could simply quit. And then wait a minute, wait a minute. It won’t be long before they’ll be begged to come back.

• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley. Listen to her podcast “Bold and Blunt” by clicking HERE. And never miss her column; subscribe to her newsletter by clicking HERE.

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