The recent murders or police misconduct within black and minority communities has created uproar in not only the US but the UK as well. People – mostly white - have turned a blind eye or made an attempt to avoid the reality of this situation. Large amounts of evidence against the police show that the biggest victims of police brutality are the black communities.
Darrin Manning was walking in the park with his friends on a cold night in Philadelphia; his principal had given them warm scarfs and jackets for that harsh night. They were on their way to a basketball game when police officers pursued them for no other reason than suspicion – Darrin stop running from them when he thought it would imply guilt when he had nothing to hide. He was tackled to the ground by a female officer and was aggressively searched – so aggressively that he ended up in the hospital with a ruptured testicle. The female officer (un-named, of course) was given no consequences and went to work normally the next day. No matter what he was wearing or what colour his skin is this abuse shouldn’t be allowed, as his mother pointed out “they shouldn’t be able to do that to any child.”
A big argument against police brutality is when the public out the victim as the bad guy – “he was deserved it, he was a thug”. There is a popular idea that all black men are all “thugs”. This has been happening since the beginning of the slave trade, negative media against the black community has also become a big factor in this belief. Darrin Manning was described by his school as a “Straight A model student”, how thug can you be when you represent a school?
The legal system punishes people for their crimes and the officers are supposed to take suspects in whether they are cooperating or not, not kill them before they get the chance to even stand trial. Mark Duggan was travelling in a minicab in the middle of London, when he was stopped by armed forces and was told to get out – he got out the car with his hands up in surrender- police believed he had a gun in his hand and shot him down twice. It was later discovered that is was his phone. Michael Brown was in a similar situation when he was on a chase after a unarmed robbery, he stopped and put his hands up in surrender but even after seeing him surrender he was shot multiple times and died. We don’t hear both sides of the story – one side will never be heard; the murder victims can never speak up. It shouldn’t be based on whose story is true or false, it should be based on looking at facts. The courts ruled these cases as homicide cases but the officers pled it as a lawful killing. The definition of homicide is “the deliberate and unlawful killing of one person by another; murder.” Witnesses all pled that they saw the victims clearly surrender, how did these officers not see it? Adrenaline increases your heart rate, it doesn’t blind you.
The consequences for police misconduct are minimal which just increases rates. In New Jersey, 99% of police brutality cases are never pursued. 1 out of 3 police officers are convicted but the civilians conviction rate is double that. Ten thousand abuse complaints were made against a police department in Chicago between 2002-2004 and shockingly only 19 of them “resulted in meaningful disciplinary action.” Most police misconduct cases and complaints are handled in the internal affairs department which evidence proves is very biased or usually want no involvement. This is a main problem resulting in the abuse of the legal system. It would be a simple job for the government to re-evaluate its police departments to ensure thorough investigations and fair trials. Consequences of abuse should also be established to solve injustice between police and minority communities.
A massive event in Brooklyn history was in August 1997, when 30 year old Abner Louima was arrested in a nightclub after being