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The Policeman’s Guide to Protest Crowd Control (Abridged Edition)

In the past month or so, police at various protests around the country have pepper sprayed students who were sitting on the ground, the elderly, and Iraq war veterans.  They have fired rubber bullets at individuals who were keeping their distance and also Iraq war veterans.  They have beaten, abused and arrested countless dozens, if not hundreds, and thanks to the magic of cell phones, the internet and especially twitter, we’re all pretty confident that none of these people were being violent or out of control.  This rash of abuse of authority makes you wonder if all the previous protests police have responded to have had similar incidents we just didn’t know about because no one could Tweet they were having their faces smashed in while they were having their faces smashed in.

What we’re failing to appreciate is that this is, of course, standard police procedure.  And in fact, Holy Taco has managed to get a hold of the Policeman’s (sorry ladies) Guide to Protest Crowd Control.  Remember, they don’t want to smash you with a billy club for eating a vegan hot dog and singing “Give Peace a Chance,” they have to.


Proper Verbiage – Knowing how to speak to the public during a tense situation is paramount.  Use of proper language can help de-escalate a situation before it reaches the point where a tire iron assault is necessary.  Use the tips to ensure your message gets across loud and clear;


  1. Elderly Ladies
    1. Disperse or I will wreck you like osteoporosis
    2. Do not make me hysterectomy your entire personhood
    3. Avon calling. This month we have a sale on skull fractures.
    4. Allow me to knit you a new asshole
  2. Elderly Gentlemen
    1. Werther’s Original flavor was knuckle sandwich.  Want some?
    2. Sir, please return to washing your driveway or I will be forced to perforate your colon.
    3. Trim the hair in your ears and listen or I will be forced to clarify my message with the audio-enhancing voltage of my taser.
  3. Children
    1. Row, row, row your boat back home or you will be shot.
    2. Do you know the Easter Bunny?  My partner just put him in a cell with a serial rapist.  He will stay there until you go home.
    3. Your mommy and daddy just called and told me to tell you you’re being given to an Eastern European family who don’t own a TV.  Hope it was worth it.
  4. Hippies
    1. I have loaded my gun with wheat germ and harmony.  Want to see?
    2. This Paddy wagon is taking everyone to the best drum circle ever, please hop aboard.
    3. Your message has been received, non-bather!  This baton will now bless you with healing light, just lower your head.



Necessary Force – After using appropriate words you may have to escalate your actions in a physical way, either to deal with unruly citizenry or because they deserve.  Or because you were just speaking as a distraction and always meant to engage in violence, as the situation dictates.  However, each situation will require an appropriate response, what we call “necessary force.”  Use as required.


Detaining Criminals  – Once you have spoken with and used necessary force on protestors you may find that you still need to settle matters by taking unruly individuals into custody.  Do not allow yourself to be slowed down by standard procedures or Miranda rights, you can deny not following rules later.  In the heat of the moment you will need to react, lest the protestor get the best of you.  The following are arrestable offenses during a protest, or any time no one is watching you.


  • Jaywalking
  • Littering
  • Excusive use of profanity
  • Limited use of profanity
  • No use of profanity
  • Menacing
  • Cowering
  • Begging (for mercy)
  • Eye contact
  • Lack of eye contact
  • Wearing white after Labor Day
  • Insisting Green Lantern was a good film
  • Muslimicry
  • African Americanery
  • Not being white
  • Being
  • Usurping public order
  • Using “usurping” in a sentence
  • Unnecessary veganism
  • Wearing clothing made of hemp
  • Patchouli stank
  • Being a fan of Rob Schneider

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