Lord of the Pigs: a tale of people and police

A conversation needs to be had between security and society

Considering it was Friday the 13th, the police could not start off the day any worse: officers discovered a pig’s severed head outside of the offices of the Montreal Police Brotherhood. The animal’s head was placed in the center of a chalk-drawn pentagram, with an arrangement of branches forming a person against the office doors, pinning a note with the message “You have taken them alive! We want them back alive! May ghosts haunt you forever!”—a reference to the chant used in Mexico last year when 43 Spanish students disappeared. On the note, which included the names of missing people, another form of a pentagram drawn—a Baphomet, which holds relation to Satanism.

Graphic by Marie-Pier LaRose.

Many would argue that this was done by Satanists. Others have suggested that it is related to the police brutality protests, or even an objection to the new Bill C-51 (which gives Canada’s security agencies higher power when suspecting someone for terrorism, and acting on that suspicion). Some have linked the incident to the missing students mentioned before, and that the pressures on minority groups in Quebec are erupting to the surface.

All in all, the signals at the scene were very scattered and held no real connection to each other. From a random pig’s head, to satanic stars, wooden structures and a note, we have little to work with except for the flashback of my high school English class when reading Lord of the Flies by William Golding.

In the novel, the group of boys, stranded on the island, are initially working cohesively. They may not be friends, but just like a society, all have to work together in order to survive. However, as human nature comes into play, Ralph and Jack begin to crave power, yet Ralph is able to mentally tame his inner beast while Jack succumbs to his own. Both characters grow into authoritative individuals as the novel progresses, with Ralph representing more of a democratic figure and Jack autocratic.

Mirroring the novel’s situation with our own, it isn’t that farfetched to say that our once well-respected security figures have fallen in the public eye. Many perceive them as suspicious and untrustworthy individuals that just want to control us in order to abide by their individualistic ideals. The impression that we now have of them is “evil”, hence the pig’s head, pentagrams and barricade over their office doors. The really sad part about all of this is that our police, or any security personnel, are now seen as corrupted figures, creating a divide between society and security. Instead of working to keep the peace and regarding everyone as individuals, we are now treated with cookie-cutter regulations, regardless of as to whether it is forceful or not. With the police—and even the government—viewed as unreliable, how are we, as a society, supposed to feel like we are entitled to our basic rights when we can’t even trust those that are meant to protect us?

It is in times such as these that the government has to take a step back to regard what they have been doing and review their forceful methods for “keeping the peace.” We deserve conversation and to be included in the decision-making process regarding how laws and regulations should be implemented and dealt with, because if the people are unhappy, someone may just go kill a pig one day.

So, for the sake of the pigs, let’s start a conversation: we obviously have a lot to say.

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