Students at the University of California believe they may have discovered a new, very slightly softer approach to the vicious suppression of the right to protest.
As California cops sprayed seated protesters directly in the face with pepper spray, some students noted that it marked a significant shift in violent over-reaction to peaceful situations.
“California has been a great place to study police brutality”, explained Drew Hershey, a biology major at the campus.
“From Rodney King to Oscar Grant, we’ve captured some really significant footage of officers acting like animals without the merest hint of provocation.”
Hershey believes that while forcing pepper spray down the throats of ideological youths may be a massive overreaction to clear and present passivity, it’s a marginal improvement on just shooting people.
Anthropology student Greg Hoosier thinks he can explain the change in behaviour.
“In some ways, the police of this State seem to be evolving, a small step at a time, into slightly less dysfunctional members of a civilised society”, said Hoosier.
“We even saw a couple of officers pick up batons, look at them quizzically and wave them a bit, before putting them back in their holsters. It’s as if they’ve developed a rudimentary understanding of when it’s appropriate to use certain tools.”
US pepper spray police
Hoosier is keen to study the behaviour further, and is working with authorities to take several of the officers into captivity.
“We shot some valuable footage of the event, and that may provide enough clues to put them away for a while. Well, unless there’s another cover-up.”
“There’s a clip that shows one of the specimens spraying pepper for ages, he’d clearly got the hang of his opposable thumbs.”
Hoosier believes that by studying the group, the public could ultimately become less fearful of riot cops, and perhaps even learn to pity them.
“I’m working on an experiment to see if they’re capable of responding to the behaviour of other people, and their own rudimentary human-like feelings”, confirmed Hoosier, “rather than acting on prejudice and a deep-rooted sadism.”
“I’ve looked into the eyes of one of these officers for a spark of recognition, there was electricity between us, I was shocked.”
“Though my doctor thinks the Taser burns should heal eventually.”