Throughout the history of America, there has been many things that have sparked a large debate nationwide. In particular, police brutality of African American men and women is a topic that is ongoing. Especially, in today’s time, we have seen so many different cases of injustice activity towards young men and women in the urban community.
Police brutality is excessive and unnecessary aggression used by the police apprehend an individual. Police brutality can be traced back many years. However, one of the most famous police brutality cases is the Rodney King beating. Around 1991, King and some fiends were pulled over for speeding. They were stomped, punched, kicked, whipped with batons etc. When being rushed to the hospital, King has 11 skull fractures, kidney failure, broken teeth etc. On the other hand, the police officers were found not guilty in court and that created stir with in the Los Angeles community.
Many people have different opinions on the topic of police brutality. Some look at police brutality as a real racial and gender divide because, “African-Americans make up only 13 percent of the population, yet they are the victims in 26 percent of all police shootings. That is nearly 3 times the rate of whites.” (line 5-6, Agorist), according to ‘The Truth about Police Violence Against Minorities, What #BlackLivesMatter isn’t Talking About’. (EQ) This bridges race and gender because minorities, like African American men, may not be a majority in overall population number, but still hold a huge population percentage in victims of police force. Just for being a black man and women in America, can lead to being arrested. However, some feel like race has no place in the role of police aggressive force. According to, ‘The Police Are Not Racist’, by Heather Mac Donald, “Statistics that tabulate officer-civilian interactions by race alone grossly distort the reality of policing” (line 1-2, Mac Donald). To Mac Donald, race can’t be a factor in who officers arrest and don’t because officers try to arrest those who have committed a “crime”.
There are solutions that can end police brutality. One way to prevent and end police brutality is to put create a nationwide legislation that makes police profiling illegal. A federal law needs to be created because, “Racial profiling from police is getting good people killed.” (par 11, King). Another idea is instead of guns used there could be other less-fatal weapons that the police could use. According to ‘King: Every American police officer must have three weapons other than guns on them at all times’, “… but it would be hard to argue that a Taser or pepper spray wouldn’t have been a better option for 12-year-old Tamir Rice.” (par 13, King). If many of the police officers had a taser or any other non-fatal weapons to handle some of the situations, many of the lost victims may still be alive today.
In the video, ‘Demonstrators raise their voices against police brutality’ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gipyA2_dZQ), the light is put on the demonstrators and how they react to the unjust shootings in Ferguson. Some celebrities, like Snoop Dogg and Beyonce, are all trying to create communication between law enforcement and the local communities because if you can then, less people will be afraid of the police. Also, another video, ‘ABC’s ‘Black-ish’ Tackles Police Brutality In The Perfect Way – Newsy’ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W888lgKSkps), parents in the TV show are explaining race relations and police brutality to their children, in wake of an unarmed black kid getting shot. This is something that a lot of parents are doing more and more of because of the increased violence of minorities in America.
This now leads to 3 questions that will start discussion:
- How important is police and civilian communication?
- How is the punish for unjust arrest?
- Why is making racial profile illegal not a priority?