Shooting a person in the back

I know that the law varies from state to state, but traditionally, it was considered immoral to shoot even a suspect in the back.  It was cheating; it was unmanly; it was a cowardly way to confront any opponent.

So the recent spate of police (and other) officers chasing after people they have stopped, but who try to flee the scene, then shooting these unarmed/armed men in the back – is alarming. They fire not one shot to disable, not three shots, but eight, ten, 16 shots. This is a kill.

No one seems to question the mental health of the shooter. After all, if he has a police badge, if he looks like a cop, walks and talks like a cop, and he tells you to get out of the car, no matter that he says your brake light isn’t working, you must get out of the car. I am not a psychiatrist or psychologist, but I have come across a number of people who act as if they are g-d, not a loving g-d, but a smiting, angry g-d.

It seems to me that these killers are too full of their own illusion of power, too thrilled with the ability to wipe out their perceived enemies. I think they are called narcissists, those type for whom they are the son in their own universe. And when they take a life, or cause fear to paralyze another, they are more than just a quirky personality. I dare say, there may be pathology there.

A while back, I wrote about our culture’s rush to assigning a label of mental illness when there are mass shootings, or when the pilot crashes the plane. But considered reflection leaves no other option. This is not mental health. The pilot who took down one hundred forty innocent souls may have been deranged, but nobody stopped him from flying. He committed an evil act. An officer who “overkills” a suspect running away may be doing the same.

When  will we ever learn?

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