How To Reduce Police Brutality

1286 Words 6 Pages
The issue of police-involved deaths has increasingly become a major controversy in the United States. Nearly every week in the news there is a reporting of a police-involved death or a protest in response to a police shooting. The deaths of Eric Garner, Sandra Bland, and others have created a deep racial tension between many communities and law enforcement. Last summer racial tensions were heightened as Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were killed by law enforcement within only one day of each other, which prompted protests throughout the country. As a response to these tragic events (and numerous others), the following question has arisen: What can we do as a unified country to reduce racial tensions that have been created by police-involved …show more content…
Proponents of law enforcement state that law enforcement is “inherently dangerous” (Dent) and must be respected by civilians. Supporters of police have also stated, “Officers must enforce the law in any number of difficult situations under pressures few outside of the military could possibly understand” (Dent). To reduce racial tensions, members within the community must able to empathize with police officers. Furthermore, supporters of law enforcement feel as though politicians “should be held to account for [their] anti police campaign rhetoric" (Dent). For example, it has been stated that the mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, “contributed to an anti-police atmosphere”(Dent) following the death of Eric Garner. These accusations against de Blasio came after two NYPD officers were shot following the death of Eric Garner. Many officers now fear being labeled as racist, which have caused many officers to practice police nullification. Police nullification is a practice in which police are selective in who they engage with for the simple fact that they fear the consequences(Grigg). Police nullification ultimately leads to less effective policing, which results in less safe communities and increased tensions between police officers and civilians. Officers feel that if people would empathize, they would be able to understand the hard work that officers dedicate to their communities. This understanding could reduce police brutality and racial tensions caused by

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