Police Culture in the United States
Internal and External Mechanisms Police Culture in the United StatesAlthough it is senior police management that makes decisions about police strategy, departmental policy, and the allocation of police resources, ordinary officers in fact make the great majority of day-to-day policing decisions. These police officers decide whom to stop, whom to question, and whom to arrest, as well as how best to deal with public concerns and complaints. See really it is ran by the ordinary officer. We used to believe that the “Chief of police” made all the decisions. The Iron Law of Oligarchy suggests that the formal organization of bureaucracies inevitably leads to oligarchy, in which even
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People tend to feel uneasy and intimidated by an officers uniform, badge, baton, handcuffs, and firearm. This fear of police officers is partly because of the way the media portrays police officers. Beginning with the Rodney King incident police brutality has been a hot topic for the media to report on. The media paints this sinister picture of police officers by rarely reporting the good deeds that police officers do. This leads to citizens who dislike the police and show no respect in cooperating with police officers. This can lead to stress for police officers because it makes their job harder because citizens will be more likely to be hostile to the police and are less likely to provide information regarding criminal activity. As a result, police officers have an established culture among each other. Police officers feel that they cannot connect with regular citizens as they have a negative picture of society from the experience on the job. Police officers tend to only socialize with other police officers because of this reason. This connection and bond amongst police officers leads to an unwritten code of silence. In police culture it is a taboo to report a fellow police officer for misconduct or to cooperate in an investigation by internal affairs. No police officer wants to be known as an informant for fear of becoming an outcast in police culture.
Walker S. (2011). Police in America.