Of course police will cover for each other.
I too have no proof of what I believe here, but I believe that there are several factors involved.
(1) Professions where ‘covering’ for each other is worst, are those where the people have to physically be with each other a lot. You’re unlikely to report someone with whom you’re going to be working, or near whom you’re going to be working, in the future. Especially if he has a gun.
(2) Professions where the individuals in it believe – rightly or wrongly – that the public just don’t know what the people in that profession have to put up with. Which is why every person critical of the police needs to spend a month in the back of a squad car. And why everyone here ought to look up Colin Flaherty : for example, his book
** White Girl Bleed a Lot: The Return of Racial Violence to America and How the Media Ignore It**
The image in America (and, I suppose, in Oz) is of cruel, racist white policemen looking for every opportunity to beat or kill an innocent young Black man who was just walking down the street to his tutor, preparing to become a doctor or aeronautical engineer, or to volunteer work helping the poor.
This is not the reality of life in the Black inner city (or of life among the Aboriginals). Replace every policeman with a sweet kind well-meaning liberal/progressive, wait a year, and see how the ones who are left have been transformed.
It’s an intractable problem. All we can do is whatever we can to insist that police be professional … while at the same time understanding that kind words and a gun will be far more effective than kind words alone.
Or maybe it’s not intractable.
I have a proposal which I would like to canvass liberal/progressive opinion about.
How about this: we find all the neighborhoods which are both well-off (family income above $125,000 a year), and anti-racist, as shown by their voting steadily 75% or more for progressive Democrats.
Then the government buys up some land in that area, and builds a high-rise block of apartments, so that a couple of hundred families can be housed in it.
Then the government houses families (ie, mainly single mothers and their offspring ) in these apartments, moving them from the terrible crime-ridden areas of the inner city.
Now, instead of these children going to dreadful inner-city schools, they can go to posh mainly-white schools. The mean old police will have the eyes of kindly white progressives on them.
This would have a dramatic impact on social/racial relations, especially on the white progressives who were lucky enough to get poor inner-city residents as their close neighbors. Instead of just seeing the faces of unsmiling young Black males on the news, being unfairly arrested for rapes and robberies and murders, they could meet them face to face, as their near neighbors, and see how nice they really are.
A lot of misconceptions would vanish quickly.