by Yvette Carnell
I once worked for the U.S. government. I still have friends there, many of whom are hurting because they aren’t being paid during the Republican orchestrated shutdown. I’d like for House Leader Boehner to put a clean continuing resolution on the floor. I want this shutdown to be over mostly because it was the work of infantile legislators who are more interested in public spectacles than governing.
What I will not do, however, is glorify the carnage that took place at the U.S. Capitol yesterday when a reportedly depressed woman was gunned down by U.S. Capitol police in front of her one year old. Former D.C. Mayor Adrien Fenty was so inspired by the work of the Capitol Police yesterday that he is raising money for the unpaid U.S. Capitol police.
“As the tragic violence unfolded at the Capitol this afternoon in my beautiful hometown, I was following closely and holding my breath,” wrote Fenty. “The entire lockdown situation was horrific, but the Capitol Police acted incredibly courageously.”
“The police officers might receive their salaries in several weeks if the shutdown ends, but they definitely aren’t getting paid on schedule and several have sustained injuries.”
Fenty donated $1,000 of his own money and set up a crowdsourcing fund at CrowdTilt.com to “reward” the unpaid U.S. Capitol Police.
If you know me then you know that I’m not a fan of stunts. The only way these U.S. Capitol police get their due is if Congress does its job, and Fenty knows it. Worse yet, Fenty is conceding that the use of machine guns and other automatic weapons to lethally subdue one woman at the U.S. Capitol who rammed into a Secret Service vehicle and sped away is the new normal. I do have a problem that dozens of SWAT police and federal agents couldn’t immobilize a 34 year old mentally ill dental hygienist without filling her with bullets in front of her baby.
Maybe it had to be done. But even so, it’s nothing to celebrate. And there’s nothing heroic about dozens of heavily armed officers of the law taking out one woman. Killing an unarmed woman is easy. Finding a way to end the rampage without taking a life is hard. Heroes do the hard work.
Those men who fired into Miriam Carey’s car did what they had to do. They did their jobs. That doesn’t make them heroes.