The death of George Floyd: Seven solutions to American police problems




Protesters across the US have taken to the streets demanding the end of police brutality after George Floyd's death and what they consider to be systemic racism.


In response, Democrats have proposed legislation to address inequalities and reduce custodial deaths, including measures to allow police to wear body cameras, prohibit chokey, and prosecute officials.

Let’s consider some of these proposed solutions and other ways to improve policing.

1. Rewrite "Force Use" policies

Most police departments have a "forcible" policy that determines how and when officers use force. These policies are different from the jurisdiction. For example, the type of "neck restraint" used by Officer Derek Chauvin against George Floyd has been banned in New York City since 1993.

After high-level police killings, many departments are forced to re-investigate and rewrite the use of coercive procedures by federal consent decree. After the death of Freddie Gray in 2019, the City of Baltimore has resumed its policy as part of a consensus agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice. The new version requires the authorities to report the use of coercive incidents, and if they use another officer, they have to intervene.

After Floyd's death, the Minneapolis City Council banned the police department from handcuffs and mandated that authorities intervene if their allies were using unnecessary force.

Advocates agreed that rewriting these policies would not effectively prevent deaths such as Floyd's, and that force was still not used against the color classes. An analysis by the New York Times showed that Minneapolis police used blacks seven times more force than blacks.

2. Police override

Protesters expect cities and states to spend significant funds on their police departments without education, mental health, housing, and other community-based social services. There is a growing demand for politicians to “degrade” the police - that is, to reduce funding in general.

The calls cut the Los Angeles mayor to $ 150 million from a proposed budget increase for his city police. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio also promised the NYPD to withdraw money toward social services, though he did not cite a number.

In Minneapolis, a group called the Black Visions Collective is asking the city council to pledge not to increase the budget of the police, and m 45 million of the force's current budget to boost the city's coffers in the wake of the coroners' epidemic. Asking to be removed.

"It's time for our city to invest in a safe, free future," the group wrote. "We cannot fund MPD's attacks on black lives."

3. Eliminate the police

On Sunday, a veto-proof majority in the Minneapolis City Council promised to "begin the process of closing the Minneapolis Police Department" in the presence of a majority of protesters. He pledged to create "a new, transformative model for agricultural protection". Earlier this week, two council members used the word "cancellation" to describe their plans for the department, similar to Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar.

Whether the council is only promising to remake the department, or asking some protesters to "disarm the police," has not been made explicit. A panel of doctors and health care professionals responds to the 911 call, instead of the police, saying that the council president is likely to enter the state receipt.

A group called MPD 150 is calling for a "police-free future" in Minneapolis in which mental health professionals, social workers, religious elders and other community-based advocates work as police.

There is some historical example of the wholesale cancellation of a section. In 2012, the Police Department of Camden, New Jersey was completely disbanded and all of its officers lost their jobs. However, this was certainly not an abolition - a new, countywide police force was formed in its place, and about 100 former Camden officers applied and got their jobs back. The move actually put more police on the streets of Camden. The new department used force policy very harshly and made it easier to shoot rogue officers in the city.

The department reported the reduction of the home tax and the use of compelling complaints.

4. Disarmament

Since the 1990s, through a special acquisition program with the US Department of Defense, the military has transferred more than $ 5 billion worth of equipment from sleeping bags to ammunition and armored vehicles.

Consequently, many advocates for police reform believe that the police are today acting like domestic soldiers, using methods and equipment that are ready for war, and trying to keep the people peaceful and that this approach is costly to live.

President Barack Obama set limits on how the police could use the program in 2015, but many of them were overturned by the Trump administration a few years later.

Over the past two decades, the police have become more and more armed, and many have been taught military-style tactics. The so-called “warrior training” revolves around a narrative of cops facing heroes from every accident, who must learn how to protect themselves - which means killing civilians.

Critics say this is a tactic to intimidate and shoot the police, then think.

In 2019, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frew will be banned from participating in "warrior-style" training even with his own money. But the local police union has continued to train the ban, calling it "illegal."

There are investigations to show that militarization leads to police violence. In 2017, a study published in Research and Politics found that police have more military weapons and are more likely to use them.

5. The police sued

Citizens who try to sue the police in civil court for excessive force are often thrown out of their cases due to a theory of justice called "qualified immunity." The Supreme Court is designed to protect government employees from useless lawsuits and give police a legal breathing room around the second decision of their separation.

To pursue a case, the court directs two questions: First, did excessive force be used in violation of the Fourth Amendment? If so, is there a court ruling before the conduct is "clearly established", i.e. does the officer know that his conduct is illegal?


The second question that lawyers can say is whether courts give free passes to the authorities, and if there is no precedent, there is no precedent. In an analysis by Reuters, more than half of the cases in the US were thrown out on the basis of "qualified immunity."

The Comprehensive Judiciary Act, introduced by Housing and Senate Democrats this week, will end police-qualified immunity. Supreme Court justices Sonia Sotomayor and Clarence Thomas both said they believe the doctrine needs to be redefined. There are currently eight eligible immunity cases before the nation's highest court.

6. Police Station

At times, police violence against black people can be attributed to the “bad apple” - an angry and racist policeman stepping up to the task.

In an attempt to keep them away, some forces have dismissed police officers who openly accept racist views. Last July, the Philadelphia Police Department fired 13 officers who posted racist and violent messages on social media - but only after a lawyer's team brought out the messages.

But the reality is that the bunch is a little more complicated than just a spoiled apple.

Social researchers call it a "closed system," with little external supervision and obedience. If one officer crosses the line, the others return it. Without a video of the incident, it often comes to the words of a "criminal" and a respected police officer.

This is why so many police are caught wanting to wear a body camera and recording a conversation with the police. He was adopted in New York a few years before the death of Eric Garner, and Congress is proposing to make him national.

According to a recent analysis of 70 studies, their effects are insignificant, showing that they reduce violence.

Zero, the nonprofit campaign behind the # 8 CantWrite hashtag for police reform, said they have limited use. While footage of police brutality has been instrumental in exposing the problem, most of what is filmed is not the police but the citizens. Body cameras can be easily switched off and the footage can be used by citizens during criminal cases to prove police brutality.

7. Start counting

There is no doubt that black Americans are killed by police and are subjected to other forms of police violence. But it is not yet clear how many victims, or which sections are the worst offenders.

Obama signed into law on death in 2014 to force the police department to report every time a citizen died in custody. The law requires the Attorney General to reverse the data, which should issue a report every two years on ways to reduce deaths.

Four years later, the Inspector General of the Justice Department said the department still does not have data collection from the states and is not expected to have until 2020.

Meanwhile, the FBI has embarked on a national utility data collection project to not only keep track of those killed by police but to force a police officer every time. They began collecting this data in 2019, but local law enforcement agencies were not required to participate and the information had not yet been made public.


In this void, non-governmental organizations and journalists had to fill in the gaps. In 2015, the Washington Post began logging every deadly shooting by an on-duty police officer in the US. Since then, he has killed more than 5 thousand policemen using a mix of news reports, social media, and police reports. Their data, often used by policy researchers, show that blacks are nearly 2.5 times more likely to be killed than whites.

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