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May 22, 2018

Open Thread – Top 20 Pepper Spray Gallery

After the excessive and brutal use of force by officers on the campus of UC Davis, photoshop gurus from around the web have been busy at work putting the image of Lt. John Pike (the pepper spraying cop) into images where he pepper sprays all manner of other harmless and benevolent people and critters and ideas.  Here is an assortment of the best.






















63 Responses to “Open Thread – Top 20 Pepper Spray Gallery”
  1. Vote! says:

    These are hilarious but the situation is truly sad. Is this the freedom we’re fighting for? Is this the police force we want the rest of the world to have?

  2. benlomond2 says:

    My Republican Aunt ( who I love dearly !) sent this to me today,,, just HAD to share it !

    The best non-partisan political joke ever!

    A driver is stuck in a traffic jam on the highway. Nothing is moving.
    Suddenly, a man knocks on the window. The driver rolls down the window and asks, “What’s going on?”

    “Terrorists have kidnapped Congress, and are asking for a $10 million dollar ransom. Otherwise, they are going to douse them all in gasoline and set them on fire.

    We are going from car to car, taking up a collection.”

    “How much is everyone giving, on average?” the driver asks.

    The man replies, “About a gallon”!

  3. Moose Pucky says:

    The whole lot of them expresses much.

    Especially like “Career Day with Lt. John Pike”–that says it all.

  4. Mag the Mick says:

    I wish I could post the image that just came up on my Facebook network. It shows a crowd of young adults on a street who are laughing, shooting silly string, and super soakers. In front of them, laughing as he’s being hit by silly string and soakers, is a young, unarmed cop, who appears to be totally engaged in the fun. And of course, the picture was taken in…Canada.

  5. Zyxomma says:

    OK, I’ll re-post this when a new OT shows up. In the meantime, anyone in the military OR anyone who knows someone who is (I guess that would be all of us, more or less) will be outraged after reading this:

    There are a couple of errors — effective for ineffective, moral for morale — but since today is the deadline for the so-called super committee before cuts become automatic, it is, IMO, a must. Please read it, and make sure others do as well. Thanks.

  6. Zyxomma says:

    The English department at UC Davis is calling for not only the resignation of Katehi, but for the disbanding of the UCPD:

  7. Baker's Dozen says:

    Let’s hope Lt. Spray isn’t in NY on Thanksgiving. He’ll be spraying the Snoopy balloon because it’s blocking the sidewalks.

    Somebody more clever than I needs to do a new Beatles album cover–Lt. Pepper Spray’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band.

  8. Josh Alexander says:

    Vandalism of art refers to intentional damage of an artwork (for unintentional damage see accidental damage of art). The object is usually exhibited in public, becomes damaged as a result of the act, and remains in place right after the act.

  9. FISHEYE says:

    What a f*&^ing brute. There is absolutely no reason in the world to spray peaceful protestors. It was as if he sprayed the Declaration of Independence (poster 2), the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights all in one. This stuff makes me think I must be living in Nazi Germany. This is maybe the most disgusting thing I have seen in a long, long time.

  10. Lee323 says:

    As you scroll down through these diverse images, you have the impression of Pike strolling through the avenues of our art, history, religion, education, popular culture….essentially a mosaic of the most iconic, and, in some cases, the most vulnerable, aspects of our civilized humanity.

    One photo by itself would probably be funny, even thought provoking, but it wouldn’t give that chilling impression of casually pissing on what makes us human in the best and global sense. The whole gallery of images has a curious potency in expressing the more inchoate impressions of why so many find his actions at UC Davis so obscene and threatening.

    Interesting post. Thanks, AKM.

  11. M. Paul says:


    John pike, the new Joseph Jeffrey Hazelwood.

    M. Paul

  12. Dagian says:

    I have to dash, but I just spotted this and thought it should appear on the open thread:

    Posted at 12:43 PM ET, 11/22/2011
    Sarah Palin goes rogue on Fox
    By Erik Wemple

    “Last month she made a greatly anticipated announcement that she was not running for president. To get the word out, she chose the radio show of conservative talker Mark Levin.

    Wrong outlet, said Fox News chief Roger Ailes, according to Gabriel Sherman in a New York magazine story. Palin is under contract to Fox, a $1 million-per-year deal that doesn’t expire until 2013. At that price, of course, Ailes has every right to expect that Palin will bring her exclusives to Fox. That, after all, is the whole idea behind the contract.”

    There’s more, naturally.

  13. bubbles says:

    so sorry. the lady who was sprayed and kicked by police in Seattle has lost her baby.
    my heart goes out to this woman. there are no words. there are no comforting hugs or kisses from family and friends that can ease the pain she is enduring
    dear Pups i am crying so hard. although it has been forty years since i lost my first baby i can still see her tiny white casket covered with yellow and gold and white flowers. there are wounds that never heal. scars that can never be erased. not ever. as long as life remains the loss of a child changes everything about us.
    please be careful Pups as you challenge the system. if you are pregnant stay away. find some other way to support your cause. if you are elderly or have a disability send a pizza or drop a few bucks to support those who face armed might. be safe.

    • Baker's Dozen says:


    • Alaska Pi says:

      (((dearest bubbles and young woman in Seattle )))

    • benlomond2 says:

      loss of words… big hug..

    • thatcrowwoman says:


      I dream the little ones you and I have lost, bubbles,
      forever young
      laughing and playing together
      among the ancestors.

      Someday we’ll join them
      but no hurry.
      For the ancestors and all our relations
      (with many fine photos of this beautiful world)
      Alison Krauss – I’ll fly away


    • Bubbles, I am so sorry for your loss. You are right, some hurts just never leave us.

      I am so sorry to hear about the woman who lost her baby. I knew she’d been pepper sprayed, but I didn’t know she’d been kicked. How horrible.

      And you are also right – stay safe. I also worry every time I see someone there with a young child. There are just some places where it’s best not to go and there are other ways to support the cause and make your voice heard without being in harm’s way.

      Isn’t it awful that being in harm’s way refers to how we might be treated by the police who are supposed to protect us. Very sad.

  14. DinkeyAK says:

    I’m a student and organizer at the UCs, originally from Anchorage.

    The most inspiring footage, to me, from UC Davis isn’t the brave students being pepper sprayed but staying in place. It’s actually the spontaneous crowd that forms and chases away the riot cops. The students yell, “YOU CAN GO” at the riot cops, who look terrified and completely retreat. People are beginning to realize their power, they do not have to put up with further abuse from these thugs.

    Start watching at 6:30 in this video:

    • jenjay says:

      Great article.

      I hadn’t seen the whole footage, and even the very beginning — when the officer brandished the pepper spray canister dramatically before spraying the passive students — was psychotically surreal. Did he think he was a magician? Was the display to make it clear to the crowd nearby that he’d use this on them, too, if they weren’t obedient? Was he making it clear to the cameras and the record that he was “just” using spray, when he was tempted to use more force? WTF?

      The actions documented on the video are horrid. Supposedly, what happened was even worse:

  15. BigPete says:

    Customers who purchased this also purchased……

    “I don’t always oppress, but when I do I use Defense Technology 56895 Mk-9 Stream, 1.3% Red Band/1.3% Blue Band Pepper Spray.” – Tres XXX beer guy.

  16. Baker's Dozen says:

    And here’s a great photo of the wall street protests

  17. Baker's Dozen says:

    It’s pretty obvious that the recruitment and training of campus police needs to drastically change. They are attracting the wrong type of person in the first place, and training definitely needs to go more towards, “to protect and serve.”

    Would any of you now want to call that campus police dept when you felt like you needed to have an escort to your car on a dark night?

    • leenie17 says:

      Unfortunately, many times private security/police forces hire those who were unable to qualify for regular law enforcement agencies. I remember a few from my college days…arrogant, above the law, convinced that a walkie-talkie and a uniform made them twice the man they really were.

      Quite a few of them had tried to join the police force but had either failed the psychological tests (those were the really scary ones!) or washed out of training because they couldn’t handle either the academics or the physical training. During my junior year there was a student who worked part-time for campus security who would leave notes on my windshield, written on the back of parking ticket forms. I finally felt so uncomfortable that I started parking on the other side of campus and walking much further just to avoid him. I imagine that his behavior would be considered very close to stalking if it happened today! Needless to say, I would NOT ask him to walk me to my car!

    • benlomond2 says:

      You would think that California Campus Security would be well trained on how to appropriately respond to protests on campus… it IS California ! probably more protests in this state than any 10 states combined in the nation…. not a proud day for Californian residents.

  18. I know the images are political humor, but I can’t laugh at any of it. It is a reminder, however, that political humor isn’t necessarily funny – but it makes a point in a way that no amount of words can. Very well done.

    I think the one that makes the point the best is Ghandi.

    • bubbles says:

      thank you for the article Viewer. well worth a moment to read.

      • bubbles says:

        i copied just a bit from Niemanlab:

        This weekend, a series of photographs — images of a riot-gear-wearing cop shooting a group of students in the face with pepper spray — made their transition from journalistic documents to sources of outrage to, soon enough, Official Internet Meme. Perhaps the most iconic image (taken by UC Davis student Brian Nguyen, and shown above) isn’t explicitly political; instead, it captures a moment of violence and resistance in almost allegoric dimensions: the solidarity of the students versus the singularity of the cop in question, Lt. Pike; their steely resolve versus his sauntering nonchalance; the panic of the observers, gathered chorus-like and open-mouthed at the edges of the frame. The human figures here are layered, classified, distant from each other: cops, protestors, observers, each occupying distinct spaces — physical, psychical, moral — within the image’s landscape.

        As James Fallows put it, “You don’t have to idealize everything about them or the Occupy movement to recognize this as a moral drama that the protestors clearly won.”

  19. Mo says:

    Holy cow, check out David Frum – this is a must read, especially for those wondering why Alaska has a Representative such as Dumb Young.

  20. bubbles says:

    marvelous collection AKM.
    i have quite a collection of my own on Facebook. i do understand that some folks have taken umbrage at these humorous depiction of U.C. Davis’ employee of the year. to them i say “suck it up buttercups” or words to that effect.
    Pike himself is an overweight, out of shape, wannabe policeman. he is worst than merely despicable. he represents all that is wrong with our society. from the beginning from the very foundation of this country his archetype has been fully present. they sit in our halls of Congress. they sit on school boards; they are present in our justice system, they preach in our churches, temples and sanctuaries and they infect all areas of our culture. we will never achieve true greatness as long as we allow them to live among us and prosper.

  21. Mag the Mick says:

    I actually would’ve supported the use of pepper spray on those two awful Titanic passengers. The producer and director too. Worst movie ever. However, I hope the original photo survives to join the iconic photos of young people being fire-hosed in Selma and of the shocked students at Kent State.

    • bubbles says:

      ROTF Mag. i too hated that movie.

      • Zyxomma says:

        From the New Yorker: A woman took her grandson to see Titanic, after having explained a bit of the history. Of course, he was bored, and squirming in his seat. More time passed; more boredom ensued. Finally, he asked, Grandma? Are you SURE this boat is ever gonna sink?

        I was SO bored, and so annoyed by DiCaprio’s completely anachronistic performance. I’ve liked him in some other things, but not that.

    • Baker's Dozen says:

      The only thing good about that movie was the popcorn.

  22. AKblue says:

    Perhaps Lt. Pike could become a runway model. He seems to have a stylish walk.

  23. tigerwine says:

    Did anyone notice the cop without the helmet that was politely, and with a smile doing his job of keeping order? Funny his name isn’t getting in the papers. He was surrounded by his fellow policemen, who all managed to look like Darth Vadar swaggering around, while this fellow stayed in one place and seemed to establish a rapport with those around him. Wish he could get in the papers and on TV to show how it could and should have been done.

    Also, did you see (and not hear) the Chancellor when she finally got brave enough to come out of her building. DEAD SILENCE as she walke among the students to her car. I mean, you could have heard the proverbial pin drop. Very dramatic.

  24. Zyxomma says:

    There’s a petition asking the Department of Justice to investigate:

    I’ve already signed.

  25. CO almost native says:

    Good one: using humor to emphasize the brutish reaction of some in charge. He, his police chief, other officers who participated/condoned his actions- no one stopped him!- and chancellor should be fired.

    Let’s see how they like it when the tables are turned…

  26. Ripley in CT says:

    I came. I laughed. I tweeted.


  27. thatcrowwoman says:

    methinks Lt. Pike needs a dose of his own “medicine”

    followed by a waterboard rinse

    *stooping to that level*

  28. GoI3ig says:

    I finally saw the video of this on the news tonight. Most police agencies have a use of force continuum that dictates the allowable use of force. The force is generally commensurate with the resistance. The force used should be the minimum necessary to overcome the resistance.

    In this case, passive resistance would normally be handled by simply picking them up one at a time and carrying them out of the roadway. As a supervisor, it would seem that this guy would have an understanding of that policy. I guess he decided to kick it a notch.

    In watching the video, he walks up and down the line of passive resistors seemingly trying to punish or torture them. It was really quite bizarre.

  29. Nan (aka roswellborn) says:

    And for anyone offended by some of these, lets put this in perspective, shall we? Like this:

    “And I say to you, as you did it to one of these, the least of these my brothers, you did it to Me.”

    (Matthew 25:40 English Standard Version)

  30. Lani says:

    Writing’s link for an occupy discussion:

    Lt. Pike may have to retired. He should thank his union and the 99% that retirement is even possible.

    • Thanks, Lani – not sure how many AK mudpups are on board the flats as I have not seen any of the usual suspects around lately. I do have a couple of other options for recruits, but wanted to start here.

  31. Baker's Dozen says:

    Oh, lordy, these are the funniest things I’ve seen since Sarah flushed herself down the porta p0tty!!!!!

    He and a couple of others are on admin leave. Let’s hope that the Gov is holding open the door for him and the chancellor to leave also too, and waiting just outside the door are various officials with official papers telling them about the criminal and civil suits filed against them in state court, as well as the ones for fed court because they violated civil rights.

    I’ve written the Gov, Lt. Gov, and the board of regents telling them to fire her keester. And if the President of the UC system hadn’t sent out a memo to all chancellors re: OWS type protests and how to handle them appropriately, then I want him holding a “Victim of the 99%. Will work for food” sign at my local on ramp.

    I want more figurative heads to roll than just a token scape goat’s.

    And if you didn’t see it, have a look at her “perp walk” out to her car. here’s a youtube recap of the events. These are class act students.

    • Nan (aka roswellborn) says:

      ” ‘ Victim of the 99% Will work for food’ ”

      Did you mean 99% or 1%? (it’s early and I’m easily confused still)

    • leenie17 says:

      What an amazing scene of those students sitting in absolute silence as Katehi walks past!

      Good for them for choosing a peaceful yet powerful way of protesting. I hope this video gets wide play to counteract the misleading images and stories of violence that have been promoted by the right wing media. The vast majority of people involved in OWS have been peaceful and this demonstration by the students of UC gives me hope for the future of the movement and for the future of our country.

  32. Open thread request: Looking for like-minded Mudflatters who are mildly inclined to participate in a few random acts of occupation. If you have access to the forum, check the thread in actions and/or send me a pm.

  33. Kath the Scrappy says:

    OMG! Talk about creative.

    This jackboot Pike seriously needs mental intervention, hopefully his Pepper Spray aggression will get him off the force & into unemployment where he belongs. Hoping also that chancellor Katehi is right behind him. If the lady has no sense, she has no business running the place. She obviously can’t “lead”.

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