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Hometown Hostility-Cops and Civilians.

Updated on July 23, 2016
Victoria Hanna profile image

Victoria will be starting college in January 2017 to begin studying for a Bachelor degree in English Language and Literature.

Cops and Civilians

Police brutality, against people of all races, has become a very severe issue in society today. 25% of officers surveyed stated they witnessed another officer harassing a citizen "most likely because of their race". 84% of officers surveyed said they have witnessed other officers use more force than necessary to make an arrest; while 67% of officers surveyed say that officers who report incidents of misconduct are likely to be given the "cold shoulder" by fellow officers. 49% of officers believe that the only way the criminal they arrest will receive any punishment at all, is to punish him or her themselves. Between 2002 and 2004, 10,000 police brutality complaints were filed with the Chicago Police Department alone, whereas only 19 resulted in meaningful consequences.

It is no doubt that police brutality has been brought to our attention more than ever before, as it should be; the public needs to be aware of these things. However, the amount of attacks on police for little to no reason is not doing us any justice. Take Ferguson, MO for example, looting and burning buildings. This will not help our cases, this will not help our chances in the justice system.

Think of it this way, a police officer is being tried for killing a teen holding something he just stole from a convenient store, but the father decides to take it into his own hands and attacks this officer that could possibly be getting jail time or his badge removed forever. It is going to be extremely hard for the judge not to reduce this officer's sentence or to remove his badge due to the justice system seeing that as "part-justice" because he took the law into his own hands. This is not how it should work, but unfortunately, it does.

I can see why this angers civilians across the nation, it's infuriating. I mean, you can't even send your child down to the gas station for a pop without constant worry. They can't be out past dark with a large group of people because it "might be a gang" and they could get searched randomly.

However, fellow Americans, we cannot let our anger and lust for revenge ruin us. We cannot be just like the police who do bad things. There has to be a balance. Our world is in turmoil and we can't allow this to go any further. When you decide to take the law into your own hands, there are consequences for that; just as there one day will be consequences for the police who abuse their power. If we continue to make it easy for the justice system to sympathize with law enforcement who abuse their power, we will never get our country back to the way it should be.

"A non-violent revolution is not a program of seizure of power. It is a program of transformation of relationships, ending in a peaceful transfer of power." -Mahatma Gandhi

So you see, revolution can be healthy for a country as long as its people do not destroy it further in the process.

What About That Billboard?

A man posted a photo of a billboard outside of a liquor store in Muncie, Indiana. It says "Hate cops? The next time you need help, call a crackhead!" And of course, just about everyone started sharing it saying "only in Muncie" or "shaking my head, how trashy". Here is my take on this notorious billboard:

I don't think this sign is trashy-at all. Actually, I think it's making a point. I am for both "sides" of cops and the all lives matter movement. You "hate" cops so much and talk about them in a degrading way an astonishing amount of times every day but you call them every 3 days to fix your problems. You "hate cops" but you call them constantly either when you're in danger, there's a brawl between your cousins at a family gathering, or just to scope out your neighborhood if you hear noises outside at night and you're alone. Yes, there are bad cops as stated above. However, they are not all the degrading, abusive, racist "pigs" you make them out to be. So yes, if you despise the police so terribly, stop calling them for every little thing. Don't expect help when you can't support the cause yourself.

In order to have peace, we must create it. Obafemi Awolowo once said "Violence never settles anything right; apart from injuring your own soul, it injures the best cause. It lingers long after the object of hate has disappeared from the scene to plague the lives of those who have employed it against their foes."


Survey Says..

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I Want Your Opinion!

Dear readers,

You all know my take on this. You all have seen a lot of numbers and statistics on this very subject. I want your opinion. What is the line of reason for police? Should civilians take matters into their own hands? When is that acceptable? What is the line of reason? Do you have a personal story you'd like to share?

*Side note*

Please keep the comments respectful toward others' opinions. Any hatful comments aimed at people directly will not be viewable by others. It will be denied. Follow and keep in tune for more! Thank you for reading!

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    • Victoria Hanna profile imageAUTHOR

      Victoria Hanna 

      2 years ago from Suffolk, United Kingdom

      Paula,

      Thank you so much for your view and bringing light onto the situation! I do not wish to ignore it, I wish to encourage peace. Of course if the people are repeat offenders/hardened criminals, it is easier to believe they provoked police brutality. And, in some cases, they do. I hope that one day every single police brutality complaint will be handled with care and caution. I truly believe we can achieve that. I feel as if Chicago PD were to investigate every complaint to the fullest extent, there would have been more than 19 disciplinary actions out of 10,000. The public cannot turn a blind eye, the justice system cannot be turning as many blind eyes as it does. The law is there to protect the people of the United States of America. But how can we expect civilians to follow the law if our law enforcement is choosing not to? I am not making an excuse for law breakers, they all need to do their time. And I am most certainly not blaming laws being broken on police example. However, if law enforcement is breaking the law they are supposed to be making sure it sticks with the public, how can the public feel safe? I believe in equality and I believe in All Lives Matter and I believe in Law Enforcement safety. I want everyone to feel safe. I hate when I see people cower in fear when a cop drives by. I would hate to feel what a cop feels before going to a protest, making sure everything is in order before he leaves in case he doesn't come back. I want peace, and it's a long road away. This is a bandwagon I would feel good about hopping on.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      2 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      VH.....None of us can have the luxury of simply ignoring this particular topic any longer. We're all a part of the Country, our communities, neighborhoods & families. At some point or another we're subject to some form or the other of contact with law enforcement.

      Police brutality is a main issue of concern & should be addressed, analyzed and corrected. Officials have taken numerous steps and continue to seek methods to change things in the best and fastest way possible.

      Some of us, myself included have never had even the slightest encounter with law enforcement in a negative or legally troublesome manner. This of course makes it difficult to seriously relate to those who have. It becomes less comprehensible to empathize with a repeat offender or hardened criminal.

      Suffice it to say, our police forces deal with violations & crime daily. The inner cities being a dangerous place for these men & women who put life & limb on the line to serve & protect the general public. We all need to ask ourselves if we would have what it takes to be a police officer. I know I do not.

      Because of widespread media, videos and advocacy groups, we are privy to much a what happens on the streets of our country. We've seen some horrific scenarios, especially in areas of minorities or people of color.

      We have to be careful not to rush to judgement or condemn. It's a delicate balance to determine when & if civil rights are violated or if unnecessary force has been implemented. We know there are incidents of police brutality. It exists and there's no way to ignore this, nor should we.

      More violence to solve the same is totally futile. The situation calls for officials to bring change, improvement, diplomacy & hope to those who have been mistreated and/or injured at the hands of police. This is even more vital for the families of individuals who have died in police custody or as a result of overzealous arrests.

      At this point, it's clear that a plea to the general public for assistance, understanding & cooperation has been heard loud & clear. People are being encouraged to come forward with their ideas, suggestions and open dialogue in an effort to create a unified front in fighting this social ill. Get involved in your community, step up and offer your solutions.

      Most of all, pass along the message to all others to refrain from being part of the problem. Excellent hub. Paula

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