To Protect and Serve Whom?

I know Whoopi’s comment on “The View” the other day – Jan 30th, 2023 – seems extreme, but we are beyond exhausted. Nothing has deterred the police violence… if anything, it has gotten worse. They are on camera, abusing unarmed black people that are pleading for their lives, and yet they can gently escort white, convicted mass murderers like Dylann Roof to jail?! Make it make sense. 

The fact that the black cops who were charged with Tyre Nichols’ murder were fired – SWIFTLY – and Preston Hemphill was initially just suspended speaks volumes. (Sidenote: Fired cops are routinely rehired, often with backpay, so we can’t assume that justice was really served here.) The police force has put their own before the citizens it swore to protect for decades… constantly reinforcing the notion that non-cops are beneath them. There is a blatant disregard for human life that is deeply disturbing and far-reaching.

A lot of us are struggling with figuring out whether we should lean into our feelings to inspire discussions and go into problem-solving mode or choose to embrace numbness as a self-preservation method. 

De-escalation has been proven as an effective tactic for reducing violence in police interactions, but it is only mandated in about half of the states (21 States Still Don’t Require De-escalation Training for Police). 

As protected as their jobs are, it’s hard to imagine a day when cops that have records of repeatedly using force against nonviolent individuals face serious consequences from their superiors. So many traffic stops have turned deadly in recent years, it’s hard to keep up. Purchasing a car seems like more of a potential hazard than an adulting goal, at this point. The fuckery continues…

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