Police brutality has been an issue for decades and is continuing to occur. Police brutality occurs when a police officer assaults a suspect when the suspect did not initiate violence. This usually happens when the suspect is either resisting arrest or committed an offense. Police brutality ranges from offending the police to resisting arrest. Although police officers must protect themselves, police brutality should never happen especially if the officer initiated the violence. This is because the purpose of the police is to protect and serve and police brutality does not fall under protecting or serving.
This is where people really start to get confused with the policy’s purpose. If the police’s purpose is to protect and serve, then why are there so many police brutality cases? Well, many people believe that far too often people without qualifications are hired to be police officers. If unqualified candidates are hired as police officers they are more than likely to not be prepared for situations such as these. This is where the police’s purpose really starts to lose meaning because if police officers are unqualified for the job they are more than likely to protect and serve their community and this raises another question.
What is the purpose of the police? As stated before the purpose of the police is to protect and serve, yet unqualified police officers do not protect or serve. This is why there are so many police cars just looking for driving offenses, no matter how small, instead of patrolling the city looking for an actual criminal activity to protect their community. This makes the purpose of the police to keep everyone in order equally no matter how small your offense was. This is where hatred of the police really comes from because instead of feeling safe around the police you start to feel nervous around them. This is extremely bad because citizens start to lose trust in police officers. Hatred for the police is where police brutality originates as many offenders usually express their feeling of hatred to the police in every case.
Another reason for these cases happening so often is because many times the police don’t follow a procedure in an encounter with a suspect. Many police officers jump straight into an arrest and don’t let the suspects give their side of the story. This is where it gets really confusing in terms of justice because in the judicial system you are innocent until proven guilty and many suspects who have turned out to be innocent were victims of police brutality. The excessive use of force by the police, in this case, becomes very wrong because suspects themselves are treated like they are guilty. This goes back to my earlier point of policemen not being qualified or prepared for these situations. This leads people to wonder about the training of policemen.
Training for police should go over what to do in an incident such as these. It should be a procedure to follow before a full-on arrest. There should be a certain set list for the police to follow before the excessive use of force because there are times where the suspect doesn’t even resist arrest and the police use force against the suspect. This creates more hatred for the police because it makes people even more scared of being arrested. This also makes people have a greater hatred for the police and more prone to disobey the law.
Although creating fear can possibly make people follow the law, it is this fear and hatred for the police that causes offenders to break the law. This goes back to my earlier point about having fear for those who are supposed to protect you. Many times the law is broken because of not having faith in the police. This causes criminals or offenders to break the law because they believe that the police is unfaithful and that they can get away with the offense. This ultimately spikes criminal activity.
Even criminal activity itself is not deserving of police brutality because before they are faced with consequences they must have a say in court. They cannot be assaulted before their court case. This is why there are so many protests against the police and people wanting the suspect to be free. This is because protesters know that the police treat suspects unjustly. They know that this could be handled a different way.
Justice is the just treatment of everyone but this word can be used in many ways. For example, a police might think it’s right or just to assault a suspect no matter of what offense. This is where this word really loses its meaning because justice is interpreted differently by everyone. A possible solution to this is making a clear understanding of what justice is in the law community. This way the word cannot be interpreted in any other way and police officers and know what is right and wrong. This is where it gets difficult for this possible solution because in some of these cases the police make certain judgments in the situation. These judgments can lead to an officer shooting and killing the suspect. For example, the suspect could prove an immediate threat to the police and the police has to make a choice based on this judgment. In this case, it is basically the police officer’s life against the suspects.
There are other cases in which the police officer makes a judgment but ultimately it is the wrong judgment. In the case of the Laquan McDonald shooting, the police officer, Jadon Van Dyke, claims that he had no other option but to shoot the 17-year-old. Many say that this case could have been handled differently considering Van Dyke fired at the teen 16 times. There are others who defend Van Dyke saying that he had no other option. The truth is the odds are stacked against Van Dyke because no one who doesn’t impose an immediate life threat deserves to be shot at 16 times much less once. This is especially true in this case being that the teen was walking away from the police before being shot. The 17-year-old had a 3-inch folding blade but he did not threaten the police in any way. Police reports of the incident were trying to cover up what happened as they stated that McDonald had threatened the police. Video evidence surfaced about a year later showing the teen walking away from police before being shot. This proves that the police break the law themselves by providing false police reports, which brings me to another point.
If the police themselves are breaking the law then how does the justice system hope to have any justice? As stated before many police officers are unqualified and break the law themselves. If this is the case then what makes the police trustworthy? How can citizens know they are being protected? Well, the answer to these questions is that it’s difficult to know if the police are trustworthy and are protecting you. This is because many policemen break laws themselves and as proven by the McDonald incident they would even create fake police reports to cover their actions. This, in turn, makes the police look trustworthy to the justice system. This creates a whole lot of injustice and definitely creates more hatred for this corrupt system.
The justice system really needs to look into who’s being hired to be officers because citizens’ lives are at stake. The reason the system is so corrupt is that of unqualified officers who are not trained properly or to the full capability. In the case of the McDonald shooting the officer could have had a negative view on African Americans and this is problematic because African American citizens must be protected as well. Van Dyke was found guilty in a trial for second-degree murder and 16 accounts of aggravated battery with a gun.
The police shouldn’t be a corrupt system because of their purpose. The McDonald shooting proves just what kind of things the police do and it shows how broken and dysfunctional the system really is. This proves to have consequences and must be looked like a sign to change the way officers are appointed.
In conclusion, police brutality is wrong and the justice system should look into the training of officers. This would make a safer community that would make its citizens feel protected. Citizens should live without fear of the police. The police’s job is to protect and serve and citizens should feel safe in their community. In the future, the police should protect and serve and this would create the respect these officials need and lessen the hatred and fear for law enforcers.