I had a friend Kyle who spent his 10 short years of his adult life protesting and exposing police brutality. Sadly, he died a few years ago at the age of 28 due to cancer, but he left a huge legacy behind in certain circles of San Fransisco due to his diligent and brave work to expose and end police brutality. As a white Lodi boy, this was very much out of the norm, as these instances and epidemics do not typically effect small towns, and people tend to believe that just because it’s non existant in their personal world, then the problem must not exist at all. He saw beyond himself to fight for a cause that effects so many and I just felt he was worth mentioning for this article.
Reports suggest that blacks are 3 times more likely to be killed by police than whites. This is due to poverty and systematic racism, and although thearticle by Jennifer Hunt in Police Accounts of Normal Force, is not based merely on the unfair treatment of blacks, the subject is more relevant now than ever, and there is a thread that runs throughout humanity that makes us all responsible for both the actions of those that harm others and the severity of treatment of those that are at the brunt of that harm. We are all effected by one anothers actions. As a general rule, the ideal citizen would act in a manner that would avoid any run in with the police. However, when there are run ins, the police need to have clear boundries and be held responsible for harmful actions that go beyond those boundaries. In 2015 the United States Police Force killed over 100 unarmed people, most being African Americans. That rounds to almost 2 every single week. Unarmed blacks are killed at 5 times the rate of whites when it comes to death by police officers. It is nearly impossible for police to completely 100% seperate personal feelings and job responsibilities. Outside of the few bad apples that just can’t control their anger and make it a habit of abusing their power, human nature will just override professionalism of even the best of officers in times of suspected abuse towards children, elderly and other crimes of injustice which has created a huge epidemic in our country that needs to be addressed for both our citizens and our police officers.