Argumentative Essay On The Use Of Lethal Force

Words: 2538
Pages: 11

Lethal force, also known as deadly force, is the use of force with the knowledge of causing or risking death. It is a topic of controversy in regards to police officers taking deadly action on the public, but unlike what media would like the public to believe, the use of any type of force is rare. It only accounts for less than 1.5% of all interactions between the police and citizens, with the use of lethal force accounting for even less (Miller, 99). In addition, lethal force is sometimes excused. In certain cases, such as when the officer’s life is at risk, the use of lethal force is classified as a “justifiable homicide” (Miller, 98). With these statistics, it seems as if the issue of lethal force is not much of an issue at all. After all, it only takes up such a small percentage of police-citizen contact. However, statistics also show that …show more content…
Research shows that the police are more likely to exercise lethal action on Black citizens than White citizens (Nowacki, 649) and in Ontario alone, over 19 young Black men were shot by officers, resulting in 13 deaths over the span of 24 years (Smith, 26). The use of racialization and racial profiling influencing police work paints a target on the backs of the Black citizens within the community and it allows for racism to affect policing (Smith, 18). This allows for cases such as Amadou Diallo to be shot at 41 times by the police (Belur, 23) after being mistaken for a suspect. There are disproportionately greater numbers of the Black community being on the receiving end of lethal force, compared to the White community, and the use of racial profiling is the leading cause of it.

Racialization and racial profiling is the method of associating certain behaviours and assumptions onto a group of individuals based on their race. This form of discrimination is established by those within power, the