Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Monroe Isadore

In which I grow perilously close to saying something political:

On September 8, 2013, 107-year-old Monroe Isadore, formerly of Pine Bluff Arkansas, was shot and killed by the police.  Mr. Isadore, I suspect you deserved better.
Before I say anything else, I completely understand a 107-year-old person is capable of pulling a trigger and of shooting someone.  I get that.  Thus, the defense of the police goes along those lines.  They were, perhaps, acting out of a protocol or a policy of some sort.  And hey, who doesn’t like a good policy or procedure?  They have their place and benefits.  This seems to be part of the problem, however, because a policy is little more than a way to avoid thought.  Someone enforcing a policy gets a pass and a purpose, all at the same time.  Going by the book is a way of saying, "I wasn't thinking.  I was doing what I was told."
Also, I wasn't there.  I don't know what when on.  But one thing I do know is that we will never hear  Monroe's side of the story.  That's the thing that happens when you are shot and killed, especially by the police.  Your side of the story goes in the casket with you.  Dead men tell no tales.  The sealed police records and the reluctance of the Pine Bluff Police Department to investigate the shooting help this.  Though now, a special prosecutor will investigate.

Apparently, the Pine Bluff officers were called in for an aggravated assault that had taken place in Isadore's home.   In his own home assaulted he them.  Can we think possible self-defense?  And, by the way, hat is off to Mr. Isadore.  I hope when I am 107 I can push two people out of my home if I don't want them there.  The two people were not initially identified, though they had the wherewithal to call the police.  I'm also wondering if they were bothering the man with something like a piece of paper they wanted him to sign, along the lines of, 'It's time for you to stop living by yourself?' and Mr. Isadore just wanted to be left alone and most certainly didn't want to sign that there piece of paper.  We'll probably never know.
Next, when the police arrived and made their presence known, Mr. Isadore shot through the door; fault, Mr. Isadore.  Shooting at the police is something few people live to regret.  The officers called the SWAT team, and what community can do without a SWAT team?  I'm smelling more policy.  The SWAT team is at the residence for some hours.  They use 'negotiating tactics'.  They use a sneaky-snake camera to see Mr. Isadore and that he has a gun.  They try gas.  They try more than one flash-bang grenade.  Mr. Isadore shoots, they shoot, and Mr. Isadore is killed with multiple gunshot wounds, inside his own home.

Again, I wasn't there.  But here are a few things I didn't read about the stand-off.  The two individuals in his home are not identified.  I'm thinking bureaucrats or people Mr. Isadore didn't like (perhaps I repeat myself).   The man had three sons and seven daughters, 27 grandchildren and etc…  As far as we know, the SWAT team did not call in friends or family of Mr. Isadore.  Nor did the SWAT team appear to want to miss supper because, after several hours, they resorted to the gas and the flash-bang grenades.  Why stay up late when you can flush him out?  Never mind the camera that could tell them when Mr. Isadore nodded off.  That would have been the perfect time for the SWAT Ninjas in their black armor and face-masks to subtly enter the residence and go from there.
Again, Mr. Isadore probably deserved better.  Then again, maybe at 107, this is a better way to go out than the nursing home.

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