Buffalo Cops Resign in Protest After 2 Officers Were Suspended for Shoving Elderly Man

Sounds like this isn’t just a case of “a few bad cops.”

In Denver, a protester holds an American flag upside down. David Zalubowski/AP

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Last night, a graphic video of Buffalo, New York, cops shoving a 75-year-old peace activist to the ground went viral—revealing that he did not, in fact, trip and fall, as the department had initially claimed. The activist, Martin Gugino, could be seen bleeding in the video and had to be hospitalized.

Soon after, the officers were suspended without pay.

Then, today, this happened:

To be clear, these 57 officers didn’t quit the force. But they are refusing to participate in the unit that performs crowd control. As the Buffalo News reported, a police union official said the suspended officers were “simply following orders.” The mass resignation was a sign of solidarity for the people who, again, pushed a 75 year-old peace activist to the ground for violating curfew. “They were simply doing their job,” the union official continued. “I don’t know how much contact was made. He did slip in my estimation. He fell backwards.”

Sort of sounds like this isn’t just a case of “a few bad cops,” but instead a systematic problem of police causing violence and refusing to be held accountable for their actions.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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