And Beyond the Slur...

Given the deplorable racial slur invoked by Boston cop Justin Barrett, it is understandable that he’s been removed from his job and his national guard post for using “racially insensitive language.” But Mr. Barrett objects that “people are making it about race, it is not about race,” and that “the words were being used to characterize behavior, not describe anyone . . . I didn’t mean it in a racist way. I treat everyone with dignity and respect.’’

Obviously that is an unconvincing defense. Even absent the obvious, casual racism in his letter, however, Mr. Barrett is unfit to be a police officer, having written of Professor Gates that “if I was the officer he verbally assaulted like a banana-eating jungle monkey I would have sprayed him in the face with OC deserving of his belligerent non-compliance.”

In our zeal to condemn the slur “banana-eating jungle monkey” — and condemn it we must — let’s also be sure to note that this idiot is brazenly advocating the unnecessary use of force against an unarmed citizen merely for talking back to the police. This is why libertarians are reluctant to afford police officers discretion to “keep public order” in extra-legal ways: the existence of cops like Justin Barrett, and the attitude toward using force that he expresses so casually.