I like seeing the whole picture when I try to make up my mind about something.
When evaluating conduct between citizens and LE, it’s helpful to see video of the entire event. In the case of the Temple PD and that Army E-8, we don’t have the whole event on video. Just what appears to be a clash of egos. I instinctively dislike fat and/or disheveled cops (you may call me prejudiced, but any uniform should be worn with pride, not slovenliness). Furthermore, I don’t like an attitude among some in law enforcement that armed civilians are suspect. Fortunately, most cops don’t fall into either category.
That said, I also tend to dislike people who act irrationally when presented with something they don’t like. It dilutes any moral/legal high ground they may have had in the face of unjust action by a police officer. I also dislike people who think they won’t get any response when they sling an AR and walk around in anything but the most remote areas. Even if it’s perfectly legal in your area, most people don’t know that, and even many cops may be unaware of your behavior being legal and not probable cause for a stop. Unless you’re out there specifically to make a point about open carry – well, if you are out there for that purpose, then you definitely shouldn’t make the sort of statements the Army SNCO appears to have made. See my above comment about rational behavior.
When this person also has a history of making things up – then makes claims/charges that cannot be corroborated by their video – I become skeptical and do not wish to take a side.
I was once told by a state trooper during a traffic stop that if I reached for the handgun on my passenger seat, “it’s over.” The next words out of his mouth were “Now hand it to me.”
I could have thrown a hissy fit about “being disarmed” – or pointed out the cognitive dissonance involved in his statements. Shortly thereafter, I might have ended up with a free bullet or two from that trooper’s .40 caliber Sig, which he had his hand on in its holster, retention lever down. Or been arrested for some random charge, or gotten a much bigger traffic citation than he ended up writing.
But I chose to tell him verbally that I would pick it up with my left hand and pass it over. Then I did exactly that. He calmed down, we had a nice talk, and I ended up with no points on my license.
Sometimes, when dealing with police, it’s better to momentarily comply with their instructions than it is to make a mountain out of a molehill. If you so desire, you may contest the actions of the officer later without a high risk of damage to your person, your finances, or your career.