Regulate Use of Force

“When you’re conditioned to believe that every person…poses a threat to your existence, you simply cannot be expected to build out meaningful relationships.”

by C.J. Ciaramella

[…] As tens of thousands of Americans marched through the streets following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, city councils, state legislatures, and Congress all wrestled with how to address protesters’ demands for an end to police brutality. One problem is that the standards for how and when police can use force on someone are complicated, and strong-sounding reforms have a funny way of getting neutered at the street level where day-to-day police interactions occur.

New York City banned police from using chokeholds, for instance, but that didn’t stop New York Police Department (NYPD) officer Daniel Pantaleo from killing Eric Garner in 2014. Cities spent money on implicit bias and de-escalation training in the years following the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, but Floyd still died with a knee on his neck. The number of fatal police shootings has hovered around 1,000 per year since 2015, according to a database created by The Washington Post.

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