The first of these myths is that “police use of lethal force is an epidemic.” This is broken down into sections that focus on one particular aspect, the first being: “determining how many deaths actually occur.” Rather than just making an opinion based argument, Johnson includes a variety of credible facts in support. These facts include official government statistics from the two primary sources, the FBI Uniform Crime Reports and the CDC Mortality Reports. The CDC Mortality report states that only 429 deaths annually are attributed to the use of lethal force with the FBI Uniform Crime Reports finding similar statistics (Johnson). This compared to the 2,626,418 total number of deaths in the United States displays how miniscule those attributed to lethal force are (“Deaths and Mortality”). In an attempt to give the reader a better understanding of what these statistics represent, a description of how the two organizations compile their findings is included. By providing this description, a firm representation of reality as it pertains to the use of lethal force is exhibited. In contrast to the official reports, other...
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...died from police use of lethal force were African-American (Johnson). This information seemingly disproves his argument; however, this is accompanied with information that broadens the view of the reader allowing them to truly understand what is being presented.
Dr. Johnson presents a broad picture of the issues with the supposed unjust use of lethal force. As a professor in criminal justice, his motivation and opinions are probably biased in the favor of law enforcement; however, by addressing information that contradicts his stance, a very compelling argument is made. This article addresses an issue that is commonly misinterpreted. Law enforcement are often wrongfully blamed for incidents based on false information, Dr. Johnson addresses this by providing an argument based on concrete evidence which successfully dispels the “myths” surrounding lethal force.
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