On MSNBC Saturday, anchor Ali Velshi laid into police unions for standing in the way of police accountability.
"Some Atlanta police officers have been calling in sick, staging a protest in solidarity with the former police officer who has been charged with murdering 27-year-old Rayshard Brooks. If the police protesting are tone deaf enough to think calling out helps their cause, they would be mistaken. If you don't want to do the hard work of policing, quit, resign, give up your salary and benefits. Protest is cheap if it doesn't cause anything."
"Police do not consider themselves responsible to the public," continued Velshi. "In a normal world, employees who pull stuff like this would be disciplined. Police unions protect them. Police unions are a big part of the problem. I typically stand behind unions, but not police unions these days. Putting on a badge and a uniform and gun doesn't make you part of a club. Despite the outdated terms like 'brotherhood' and 'fraternal' that show up in the names of many police unions, it's not actually a fraternity. The loyalty of police is pledged to the public and to the law, not to each other. Good police — and we have seen many of you — are being drowned out by a network of unions that silences those who speak out against wrongdoing in their ranks. Police who confront other police are ostracized."
"Unions should not support police officers who walk out because they've had enough," said Velshi. "Unions should not support rewards for cops who do not do their jobs. Police unions should stand up for good police, protect their wages, keep working conditions safe, insist upon the highest levels of training. Unions that protect racists and bad cops are an affront to the union legacy. The system will change. It can't be stopped. We are tired. America will choose justice and equality. It's time for the police unions to get in front of that."