Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Training Black Families Won't Stop Racist Copping

Only training the cops will do that.

Last Saturday, more than 50 African-American residents of Shelbyville met in the basement of the library to listen to a bunch of cops tell them how their children needed to play Step-n-Fetchit in order to avoid being murdered for being black.

I understand that under the current racist law enforcement inexcusably tolerated in this country, only by submitting to such condescending, racist treatment and forcing their children to obey it can black parents have a hope of seeing their children survive to middle age.

That does not make it in any way excusable.

What should have happened on Saturday was African-American and white and Latino and Asian and Muslim residents of all ages and parental status confronting the sheriff and police chief and all the deputies and officers and demanding that they start treating non-white citizens with respect.

Because deferring to terrorism - and make no mistake, law enforcement in this country is pure, unadulterated terrorism toward everyone who is not white and rich - only empowers the terrorists and guarantees more and worse terrorism.

Down with Tyranny:

Late last month we looked at some solutions to the devastating problems inherent in hair-trigger police brutality. We heard a diverse array of opinions-- from Ice-T, The Clash and Millions of Dead Cops to ex-police officers Frank Serpico and Redditt Hudson. Here are half a dozen from legendary New York City police detective Serpico:
1. Strengthen the selection process and psychological screening process for police recruits. Police departments are simply a microcosm of the greater society. If your screening standards encourage corrupt and forceful tendencies, you will end up with a larger concentration of these types of individuals;

2. Provide ongoing, examples-based training and simulations. Not only telling but showing police officers how they are expected to behave and react is critical;

3. Require community involvement from police officers so they know the districts and the individuals they are policing. This will encourage empathy and understanding;

4. Enforce the laws against everyone, including police officers. When police officers do wrong, use those individuals as examples of what not to do-- so that others know that this behavior will not be tolerated. And tell the police unions and detective endowment associations they need to keep their noses out of the justice system;

5. Support the good guys. Honest cops who tell the truth and behave in exemplary fashion should be honored, promoted and held up as strong positive examples of what it means to be a cop;

6. Last but not least, police cannot police themselves. Develop permanent, independent boards to review incidents of police corruption and brutality-- and then fund them well and support them publicly. Only this can change a culture that has existed since the beginnings of the modern police department.

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