Fantastic Fables by Ambrose Bierce: The Policeman and the Citizen
The Policeman and the Citizen
A POLICEMAN, finding a man that had fallen in a fit, said, "This man is drunk," and began beating him on the head with his club. A passing Citizen said:
"Why do you murder a man that is already harmless?"
Thereupon the Policeman left the man in a fit and attacked the Citizen, who, after receiving several severe contusions, ran away.
"Alas," said the Policeman, "why did I not attack the sober one before exhausting myself upon the other?"
Thenceforward he pursued that plan, and by zeal and diligence rose to be Chief, and sobriety is unknown in the region subject to his sway.