BOSTON (CBS) - No serious person doesn't appreciate what honest cops do for us. Without them and the risks they take, the bad guys would have a field day.
And bad guys certainly do come in all shapes and sizes.
Out in Ferguson, Missouri, there are plenty of bad guys eager to rush into the turmoil created by the police killing of an unarmed local man. I saw video Thursday of local residents outraged at the sight of outsiders coming in to loot local businesses, using the shooting as cover.
And there have already been several appalling stories of innocent people falsely fingered by vicious cowards on the internet as the police officer who did the shooting.
But things get really scary when the bad guys include police.
Even if we still don't know all the details of the killing of Michael Brown, we do know it didn't occur in a vacuum.
That predominantly black community has had a history of ugly relations with its predominantly white police force. Their zeal for excessive force, flagrant profiling and racial harassment has been well documented.
And while strong measures may sometimes be needed to deal with violent civil unrest, there is no excuse for the stunts the local cops have been pulling the past few days, terrorizing innocent citizens and rousting journalists.
No wonder people are outraged, and in this case that's hardly confined to black Americans. Nobody likes the sight of out-of-control police, any more than they like overbearing government or pushy mall cops.
Professional police everywhere should know, we need them and appreciate them.
It's the unprofessional creeps policing Ferguson that we have zero patience for.
Listen to Jon's commentary:
Keller at Large Aug 15 2014
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