This afternoon, the City of Seattle agreed to pay the family of John T. Williams the sum of 1.5 million doll ars in order to avoid a lawsuit.
That’s right, the “City of Seattle” which means “the 608,000 residents of the City of Seattle”.
Did Ian Birk, the man who murdered Williams, pay $1.5 million to the family?
Did Ian Birk, the man who murdered Williams, pay $1 to the family?
Heck, Birk is not even facing criminal charges.
Instead, it is I who is getting punished. And you. Even though we’ve never in our lives shot anyone. This is yet another injustice in this long saga of injustices.
In my opinion, the officers of the Seattle Police Department should have to pay for this. Be it through a donation pool, a pay cut, or pension fund garnishment, this $1.5 million should somehow come out of the officers’ pockets. If we, the citizens, have to pay every time police officers harm our own people, what incentive exists for them not to harm us? Only when the officers become accountable for THEIR OWN ACTIONS, will this nonsense cease. It also underscores why we need to hire our own police officers from our own city limits. Did Ian Birk even live in Seattle?
Once again, I would like to call on the people of Seattle to insist that Mike McGinn fire the Seattle Police Chief. He’s cost us too much in money and lives, and to date, there has been no real accountability that I can see. Instead, it’s just been one incident after another after another, with more and more of them thankfully being caught on tape.
In any event, “congratulations” to the Williams family. I guess. I mean, I don’t know what specifically you are supposed to say at a moment like this. I’m happy for them on some level, and I am glad they fought the good fight, but I don’t think the $1.5 million payout will prevent others from becoming victims of police brutality. For the reasons outlined above, I’m quite certain that it will have no effect for the rest of us whatsoever.
While the Williams family “won” on some level, I cannot feel that perhaps the rest of us have all lost.