On Monday, Philadelphia police officers shot and killed Walter Wallace Jr., a Black man experiencing a mental health crisis. The city burst into furious, widespread protests, as demonstrators pelted police with various objects and set police vehicles on fire.
The cops, of course, have responded with disproportionate, indiscriminate force. It is the same story as this entire summer: the police murdered someone, they are facing the public repercussions of that via the only shred of justice available to a population which will receive none through institutional means, and now the cops are mad about it.
And as we know, when police are mad they often lie. Case in point: this post by the National Fraternal Order of Police today.
Taken at face value, the picture is a very basic attempt to sway public opinion, a classic case of “copaganda.” Even if it were true, isolated acts of service by the police do not invalidate or justify the myriad transgressions they commit on a daily basis. But the image is also complete bullshit.
The child being held was not “lost during violent riots.” It was pulled from a vehicle while its parents were being violently arrested. You can see it on video here:
The above thread from HuffPost journalist Ryan Reilly lays out a bit more of the evidence. The same child is visible in now-deleted staff photos published by the Philadelphia Inquirer in a story about this incident.
I am pretty comfortable agreeing with Reilly here. This is a lie! The NFOP is willfully lying to distort the media narrative about the protests. This is completely normal. We should expect this by now. I reached out to the Philadelphia Police Department and the NFOP for comment and if they get back to me, I’ll update this post — but bear in mind, they might be lying!