Black People and Police Brutality Essay
This paper looks at the rising cases of police brutality, especially on black people. It gives examples, case in point the case of Michael Brown shot in Ferguson Missouri. It then merges these findings with sociological theories and analyzes what is right or wrong, and if anything could be changed.
Washington (AP) More than three out of five blacks in the United States say that they or their family members have had personal experience with unfair treatment by the police, the reason being their race. That is from a survey conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, which was conducted in the case of Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, approached its first anniversary.
White Americans who live in more diverse areas were more likely to admit to police brutality on black people, unlike those that live in other sectors. They are also likely to see the police as too quick to using deadly force. A thirty-year-old man, Larry Washington, from Indiana, gave a description of his encounter with a white police officer after he was arrested for theft in Burbank Illinois when he was a teenager. Black People and Police Brutality Essay
‘When I got to the police station, the officer who arrested me told me that I looked like I wanted to do something about it, and kept calling me nigger. It’s been like this for a long time, and it’s just now that everybody is starting to record it and stuff, and it’s just hitting the spotlight. Most Caucasians, they think it’s just starting to go on when it’s been like this.’
According to the report from NORC, sixty-two percent of the whites said that the reason for the violence is that civilians confront the police, rather that cooperating with them once they are stopped. On the other hand, more than seven in ten blacks identified things like race, and poor relations between police and community as the principal reasons. Black People and Police Brutality Essay
Michael Brown was an unarmed black teenager who was shot and killed on 9th of August 2014, by a white police officer by the name of Darren Wilson. That happened in Mo., a suburb of St. Louis. The shooting attracted the attention of many people and led to protests that roiled the area for weeks. Things got worse when on Nov. 24, the St. Louis County prosecutor announced that a grand jury had decided not to prosecute Mr. Wilson. That announcement set off another wave of protests, and in March the Justice Department called on Ferguson, to overhaul its change justice system, declaring the city had engaged in constitutional violations.
Questions were raised as to whether it was justifiable for the police officer, Mr. Wilson, to shoot and kill Michael Brown. Wilson gave a statement claiming that Brown was violent throughout the encounter, as he even charged at the officer even after gunshots were fired. But, some witnesses’ testimony, which for many reasons is unreliable, said that Brown was trying to flee from Wilson and attempted to surrender by raising his hands up before he was shot and killed. The issue was with Brown walking in the middle of the road, and Wilson made contact and told him this, before realizing that Brown was a robbery suspect who stole cigarillos from a nearby store. It was when Wilson tried to stop him that they had a physical altercation at the officer’s SUV. That is when Wilson opened fire, and as Brown turned to run, he fired more shots apparently with the fear that Brown was charging towards him. Black People and Police Brutality Essay
There was no enough evidence to prove this, but assuming I was true, Wilson still had no right to shoot at Brown unless he saw Brown with a weapon. Also, for a person who was fearing for his life, one shot would have been enough to put the enemy down; instead, he continued to fire more shots. CNN have an eyewitness who claims to have been with Brown the night of the murder. He said that the officer indeed told them not to walk in the middle of the road, to which Brown responded that they were like just a minute away from their destination and would be off the streets shortly. The officer drove forward, then stopped and started driving back almost hitting the pair. That was when he grabbed Brown by his neck, he tried to pull away, but the officer kept pulling Brown towards him. The officer drew his weapon with threats of killing Mr. Brown and fired his gun almost immediately. Even after they tried to run away, the police pursued them and continued shooting at Mr. Brown.
According to functionalist perspective, from the sociological theories, society is a system of interconnected parts that work together efficiently, for balance and stability and social equilibrium for the whole. Just like the family institution plays the role of providing, nurturing and socializing children, the police department should play the role of protecting citizens, and not attacking them. That should be irrespective of gender, religion or race. Black People and Police Brutality Essay
Holland, J. (2015, May 8). Half Of Black Americans Say Police Have Treated Them Unfairly. Retrieved from Huffpost Black Voices: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/half-of-blacks-say-police-have-treated-them-unfairly_us_55c23562e4b0d9b28f0505f6
McLaughlin, E. C. (2014, August 15). What we know about Michael Brown’s shooting. Retrieved from CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2014/08/11/us/missouri-ferguson-michael-brown-what-we-know/
Warren, V. (2014, November 26). Structural and Institutional Racism Exists Within Police Forces. Retrieved from The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2014/11/25/does-ferguson-show-that-cops-who-kill-get-off-too-easily/structural-and-institutional-racism-exists-within-police-forces
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