The Impacts Of Police Discrimination In The United States

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From the shooting of Edmund Powell on June 1991 to the fatal choke hold that killed Eric Garner on July 17, 2014, police brutality is not an unfamiliar topic to American citizens. It is one of the most contradicting human rights violations in the United States and has been around for decades. The immoderate use of violence in law enforcement by police officers is overwhelming, along with the number of “alleged” crimes by officers swept under the rug. New York City police officer Dennis Fitzgerald claims “We’re not out there to antagonize or oppress, we’re out there to maintain the peace,” (Cothran pg.14) but does the evidence of injustice acts within the police force say otherwise? The United States Force has gone corrupt due to low requirements …show more content…
“Even if police officers of whatever race enforce the law in relatively the same way, there is a huge image problem with a department that is so out of sync with the racial composition of the local population” said Ronald Weitzer, a sociologist at George Washington University (Sept. 4, 2014, NY Times). According to a 2007 survey of police office diversity among police departments, minorities only make up a quarter of the police force. Looking at other studies, The Bureau of Justice Statistics studied the racial makeup of hundreds of police departments nationwide until 2012, and currently, “the percentage of whites on the force is more than 30 percentage points higher than in the communities they serve” (NY Times). This does not only show the issue of variety in ethics among the police force, but the suspicions and trust issues in police officers as well. Even if this study does not correlate with the biased decisions of American police recruitment, it gives enough reason to question its …show more content…
In the 2003-2009 survey of arrest-related deaths by the U.S. Department of Justice, statistics show that 60.9% out of 4,013 reported deaths were made by law enforcement (Andrea M. Burch p.1). While this may be high in homicide rates, it also shows the race and gender of these deaths. Based on the data as of 2009, 95.4% of the arrests/deaths are of males, and in race, 31.8% are Black, 19.7% are Hispanic, 42.1% are White, and 6.4% of other. This may be surprising to see the majority of deaths are not by minorities, but compared to the U.S. population, it is very high. The United States Census Bureau data shows that the U.S. Population of 2010 in race is made up of 13.2% being Black, 17.1% being Hispanic, 62.2% being White, and 7.1% being other. With the arrests of both African-Americans and Hispanics alike being high than their actual population, it shows these races are more targeted by police officers rather than the white

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