July 11, 2014

Who Watches the Watchmen?

Over at The Imaginative Conservative, Bonnie Kristian offers the following seven reasons for widespread police corruption:
  1. Many departments don't provide adequate training in nonviolent solutions.
  2. Standards for what constitutes brutality vary widely.
  3. Consequences for misconduct are minimal.
  4. Settlements are shifted to taxpayers.
  5. Minorities are unfairly targeted.
  6. Police are increasingly militarized.
  7. Police themselves say misconduct is remarkably widespread.
A Department of Justice study revealed that a whopping 84 percent of police officers report that they have seen colleagues use excessive force on civilians, and 61 percent admit they do not always report “even serious criminal violations that involve abuse of authority by fellow officers.” This self-reporting moves us well beyond anecdote into the realm of data: Police brutality is a pervasive problem, exacerbated by systemic failures to curb it. That is not to say that every officer is ill-intentioned or abusive, but it is to suggest that the common assumption that police are generally using their authority in a trustworthy manner merits serious reconsideration.
Read the rest here.

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