There are many controversial issues related to policing. One that sticks out is police discretion. Police Discretion is the exercise of individual choices or judgments that police officers have concerning possible courses of action (Cox, p. 227). Saying that police Discretion needs to be abolished is an unrealistic goal, but better supervision of patrol officers and better departments policies and procedures on the use of discretion is something that we can try to achieve. Police discretion is usually more seen in minor crimes (Ross, p. 98).
This theory simply argues that individuals will eventually engage in crime because the build up of certain strains placed on them by society. This is why those individuals who continue to engage in crime after being part of Ceasefire do so. Arguably, officials and law enforcement personal place too much a strain on these individuals to simply “cease” their crime careers. Further, maybe these officials place much to high of goals for these individuals to achieve. It is important to understand that the individuals that are part of Operation Ceasefire are hardened criminals or future criminals.
We can put a stop to this and we will put a stop to this. If you ask a police officer their perspective on police brutality, their response will be much different from a civilian’s. They believe that some inexperienced or new to the job officers take quick action without thinking because they are under stress due to the situation they are put in. Just because you fire the “bad” police officers and hire “good” police officers doesn’t mean you are making a change. Another statement made by police officers is that the media transfigures the evidence and make them look like the bad person in the scene.
Police brutality is often triggered by disrespect towards the police officer. The most noticeable form of brutality is physical, where Chemical gas, batons, tasers, and guns, can be used for physical intimidation or to actually hurt people. Police brutality can also take the form of verbal abuse or psychological intimidation. It seems reasonable to understand that sometimes the police are put into situations where excessive force may be needed. But, because some officers use these extreme actions in situations when it is not, police brutality should be addressed and looked into by both the police and the public.
Just to be clear, I am not saying that the 1033 program should be abolished. Since the 1033 program does supply law enforcement agencies with bullet proof vests and other personal protective equipment I believe that the program should be very limited and have a huge oversight by both the people and the government. We have to ask ourselves, Are we willing to give up freedom for security? If law enforcement looks scarier and more militaristic than people will be afraid of them. A growing distrust in, the police will lead to a less effective police and more violence from both the police and the people.
The general assumption among these studies, is that gun control, one way or another, will have some sort of effect on levels of violence. Studies done within America suggest that the prevalence of guns among citizens curtails violence (Lott, 1998, 5). However there exists research done on a macro scale which supports the notion that prevalence of guns is positively correlated with the level of violence (Bangalore & Mersserli, 2013, p. 873). It is however probable that both of these theories are deficient, with some researchers suggesting that violence need be the independent variable rather than guns (Kates & Mauser). Describe shortcomings vaguely.
Police Brutality has been a widely ignored issue since the United States of America was created. Two major elements that play into police brutality is racial discrimination and the belligerent desire to misuse their power. The effects from this issue involves the loss of trust and the increase of fear towards the police force who have disregarded their obligation as protectors. Demilitarization of the police force should be a priority; the amount of weaponry supplied to them encourages the use violence as a solution to stressful situations where they do not know how to react. Periodical psychological testing could prevent mentally ill, racist or power hungry people from joining the police force and endangering the lives of the innocent in
If they would put body cameras on every police officer the use of excessive force would be almost extinct because now they are being watched and if they use excessive force it will be caught on video. According to Michael D. White “Advocates of body-worn cameras have argued the technology will change police officer behavior during encounters with citizens. In the NYPD ruling, the judge noted: If, in fact, the police do, on occasion, use offensive language—including racial slurs—or act with more force than necessary, the use of body-worn cameras will inevitably reduce such behavior”. Not only is the body camera a benefit for the civilians but also to the police officers as well, they said “The Rialto evaluation reported that, following implementation of the body-worn camera program, citizen complaints against police declined by 88 percent—from 24 in 2011, a year before the study, to just three complaints during the camera project study period (Farrar 2013). Moreover, use of force by police officers dropped by 60 percent, from 61 to 25 instances, following the start of the body worn camera study (ibid.)”.
The police play a vital role in today’s justice system; they are the heroes that catch armed banked robbers, stop kidnappings, and catch murderers that terrorize communities: or at least that is how they are portrayed. While police activities are much more mundane than the public may think, police are given total authority over the public to keep the streets safe. In Steven Lukes’ article, power, he gives a general definition of power as “the capacity to bring about outcomes” (Lukes 59), but that in actuality, a single definition for “power” is very controversial. Lukes gives synonyms such as “authority, influence, coercion, force, violence, manipulation, and strength” (Lukes 59), but chooses his words carefully to reveal the many contradicting synonyms to reveal the confusion about power. While it is a common misconception that officers are putting an end to things like “violence” and “manipulation”, in reality, police often cause conflict, and misuse their [vaguely defined] power because of the environment that police departments provide for their officers.
In regard to police abuse, there will be many officers who feel that their job of fighting escalating street crime, gangs, narcotics violations, and other violent crimes is difficult already, and that worrying about excessive policy for abusive behavior will only further decrease their ability to fight crime effectively, efficiently, and safely. Citizens, however, have been caught up in this gung-ho attitude, and police are more and more often crossing the line of investigation and interrogation with abusive behavior. This abuse must be monitored so that police do not forget who they are serving--not themselves, but the public. This means that even the criminals, who are a part of the public, have certain rights, particularly, civil rights. All citizens must be aware of these rights to protect themselves against over-aggressive officers who take advantage of their position as badge and gun holders to intimidate and abuse civilians for personal or departmental goals.