To me, the sight of a cop in his brutish ugly uniform and his panoply of weapons is purely bad. The badness is a composite of fear (I really don’t want to attract his attention) and hate (why is he there at all, and why so heavily armed), and I wish somebody would take him out, or at least pin him down under covering fire and make him cry for his mother and wet his cop pants.
Others feel otherwise. Obviously. I wish I understood them better.
To me, the menacing cop looks like a menace. I mean, a menace to me.
To the cop fans, the cop also looks like a menace, but to somebody else whom they fear and loathe. Who might that be?
The obvious answer is “black people”, and there’s no question that in the US, at least, this is a big part of the picture. But then there are black cop fans too, and I think that race (though it can never be overlooked) isn’t the whole story.
The cop is plainly an object of fear, so to stan him implies that there’s someone – real or illusory – whom we fear worse, and against whom this horrid Talus might be turned.
Is that someone perhaps some part of ourselves? Is the cop the heavily armed external superego, keeping our own unruly Id in line? The personification of a punitive social order, whose rules & regs we have to obey, and are expected to love? The cop can be for us, or against us, depending on which side of us turns up. Better for than against, considering his heavy armament. Better to love him than hate him. Identify with him, or he might gun you down.
But that leaves some Id left over, and so there’s another Other too, namely all those people out there – black people (or for boogie black people, Cousin Pookie); unruly people, undeserving people, those who didn’t do their homework or got bad SATs or “made bad choices”. We who have more or less “made it” under the rules have implicitly constructed these Others onto whom we have projected our own anarchic Id, the thing that makes the cop dangerous to us. They become the externalized internal enemy. Go get ‘em, Officer!
Once you’ve gunned them down, no way that Id will rebound back onto respectable Us. And of course, no way will we have to worry about you.