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We have seen excesses at play from members and factions within the police authorities, kneeling on the neck of a subdued black man, hitting a 70 year-old white man in the face with a baton, shooting a twenty-something indigenous woman based on the police claim that she became aggressive with a knife.

These stories of police brutality arrive in the context of a pandemic that has hit poor, crowded communities hardest, many with large racialized populations.  In communities that struggled to begin with, hit hard recently by Covid-19, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that police brutality against such peoples can only ignite a powder keg of pent-up anger and frustration.

Obviously no one in a protest should destroy private property or hurt innocent people.  Meeting a misuse of power with a misuse of protest is an unreasonable solution to oppression.

The questions must now be asked.

What systemic policies continue to exist that enable oppression?

What must change in policing and public policy to prevent the misuse of power?

I’ll put forward a few policies that I think should immediately change:

-end all use of force against peaceful protesters

-end the criminalization and use of law enforcement against drug use (not including large scale drug dealing), prostitution (both in the provision and use of such services), drinking in public, and assembling in any sized group (including groups not practicing social distancing)

-end the harassment of people suffering from mental health problems or who are inebriated (and not harassing or hurting anyone)

-redirect funding used to enforce laws against the above mentioned behaviour towards inner city economic development and mental health programs

-end carding of people who are not committing a crime

-ensure that all police are equipped with mini cams that must be active during all forms of law enforcement

-refocus law enforcement on protecting people from violence, theft, and other clear crimes intended to hurt people 

What do you think must change?

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They could at least have retreated within the house until reinforcements arrived. He was known to the police as a disturbed individual - just sending two cops over there was the wrong thing to do. The

I think David Petraeus makes a reasonable point here about military bases in the US. None should still be named after Confederate generals:   

We need to change ourselves first, to stop being manipulated from left and right. Every single group is trying to use different material in regards to this tragedy to get followers.  The police u

We need to change ourselves first, to stop being manipulated from left and right. Every single group is trying to use different material in regards to this tragedy to get followers. 

The police unions in the USA are borderline criminal. If they were transparent and fair the cop should have been put in civilian life a long time ago. Majority of cops are great and fair, you have bad apples in every profession however because the unions were not doing their jobs look what happened from incompetence and corruption. Here is a radical idea in a joking way, abolish every union and let people make it by productivity.

Now, on the other side, the mob, I will guarantee you if you go in there and ask randomly some people at the protest they don't even know George's last name. All they know is that is racism and white people did it. 

I live downtown Toronto, I went to get a coffee this afternoon, it is very sad to see small business boarded up. A few agitators across the street and I have seen 1 guy injecting heroin right in the middle of the street. 

People like you or social workers will go crying in their pillow if you had to work as a cop for one night. Reform yes, absolutely but don't pretend like from tomorrow there will be no crime and the police will be fairies.

Edited by Independent1986
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7 minutes ago, Independent1986 said:

We need to change ourselves first, to stop being manipulated from left and right. Every single group is trying to use different material in regards to this tragedy to get followers. 

The police unions in the USA are borderline criminal. If they were transparent and fair the cop should have been put in civilian life a long time ago. Majority of cops are great and fair, you have bad apples in every profession however because the unions were not doing their jobs look what happened from incompetence and corruption. Here is a radical idea in a joking way, abolish every union and let people make it by productivity.

Now, on the other side, the mob, I will guarantee you if you go in there and ask randomly some people at the protest they don't even know George's last name. All they know is that is racism and white people did it. 

I live downtown Toronto, I went to get a coffee this afternoon, it is very sad to see small business boarded up. A few agitators across the street and I have seen 1 guy injecting heroin right in the middle of the street. 

People like you or social workers will go crying in their pillow if you had to work as a cop for one night. Reform yes, absolutely but don't pretend like from tomorrow there will be no crime and the police will not be needed.

No.  It’s deeper than that.  While there are bad apples that need to be weeded out, police and the legal system have been overreaching for too long and using loopholes to infringe on people’s safety and freedom.  We still need police and unions.  A world without both would bring untold anarchy and suffering, but reform is needed.  

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33 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

No.  It’s deeper than that.  While there are bad apples that need to be weeded out, police and the legal system have been overreaching for too long and using loopholes to infringe on people’s safety and freedom.  We still need police and unions.  A world without both would bring untold anarchy and suffering, but reform is needed.  

Being a Police Officer is pretty much the worst job one can get in a free society.  If we want them to do a better job, we have to pay them more and train them better.

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11 minutes ago, bcsapper said:

Being a Police Officer is pretty much the worst job one can get in a free society.  If we want them to do a better job, we have to pay them more and train them better.

Strongly disagree.  They're very well paid and we're over-policed.

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13 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

Strongly disagree.  They're very well paid and we're over-policed.

That's fine.  There's nothing wrong with disagreement.  Your view of well paid differs from mine, obviously, and as for being over policed, if we followed my suggestions, we would be less likely to be.

That said, I have to admit I'm not absolutely sure what that means.  Is it that there are too many laws?

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33 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

Answering discussion with violence

Harassing people when the enforcer doesn't think anyone is looking

https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1745626691781/

If someone wasn't social distancing enough

https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1972365&jwsource=cl

Better training would certainly help.  It would probably help if the entry requirements were updated too.

That said, they are asked to police a society that doesn't want policing, and that can't be easy.

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1 hour ago, Zeitgeist said:

What do you think must change?

 

Apparently you think most of the change must come from the police, instead of less criminal activity by citizens, failed mental health policies, homelessness, or  the city, provincial, and federal legislation that creates the competing interests and power struggle in the first place.

How many are willing to serve in law enforcement to "fix the problem" ?

...it has always been much easier to bitch about the cops instead.

 

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1 hour ago, Zeitgeist said:

I’ll put forward a few policies that I think should immediately change:

-end all use of force against peaceful protesters

Suppose protestors come into your house adn refuse to leave. They're peaceful, but they're standing in front of your TV? How long will you stay peaceful? Okay, so that's unlikely. Suppose they 'peacefully' enter some other government office or police station and refuse to leave. How do you get them out without violence? Suppose they block a main highway, main railway line and refuse to leave, even with a court order? What do you do then?

1 hour ago, Zeitgeist said:

-end the criminalization and use of law enforcement against drug use (not including large scale drug dealing), prostitution (both in the provision and use of such services), drinking in public, and assembling in any sized group (including groups not practicing social distancing)

Have you seen what the plague of opioid addiction is doing to middle america? Have you seen how many are dying? You want that to be ignored? You want the dealers to expand their sales?

1 hour ago, Zeitgeist said:

-end the harassment of people suffering from mental health problems or who are inebriated (and not harassing or hurting anyone)

The only time police show up to 'harass' such people is when someone calls to complain about what they're doing.

1 hour ago, Zeitgeist said:

-redirect funding used to enforce laws against the above mentioned behaviour towards inner city economic development and mental health programs

West coast cities have spent billions on trying to reign in mental health and drug addiction, and to improve economies in inner cites, all to no effect.

 

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14 minutes ago, Argus said:

Suppose protestors come into your house adn refuse to leave. They're peaceful, but they're standing in front of your TV? How long will you stay peaceful? Okay, so that's unlikely. Suppose they 'peacefully' enter some other government office or police station and refuse to leave. How do you get them out without violence? Suppose they block a main highway, main railway line and refuse to leave, even with a court order? What do you do then?

Have you seen what the plague of opioid addiction is doing to middle america? Have you seen how many are dying? You want that to be ignored? You want the dealers to expand their sales?

The only time police show up to 'harass' such people is when someone calls to complain about what they're doing.

West coast cities have spent billions on trying to reign in mental health and drug addiction, and to improve economies in inner cites, all to no effect.

 

It comes down to appropriate use of force.  There are ways to remove protesters from a location where they are trespassing without shooting or brutalizing people.  Something tells me that the twenty-something girl with the knife could have been contained by the big male officers who came to "check to make sure she's okay" without shooting her to death.  We'll never know because we're getting the second hand report from the shooter and his partner.

Yes I don't think that charging or putting drug or alcohol users/abusers in jail is valid.

I'd say that when people have access to opportunities and have the right supports, they tend to do better in life than when they are charged and locked up.  I just don't think the state should be able to charge you for what you do to your own body. 

Edited by Zeitgeist
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1 minute ago, Zeitgeist said:

It comes down to appropriate use of force.  There are ways to remove protesters from a location where they are trespassing without shooting or brutalizing people.  Something tells me that the twenty-something girl with the knife could have been contained by the big male officers who came to "check to make sure she's okay" without shooting her to death.  We'll never know because we're getting the second hand report from the shooter and his partner.

Yes I don't think that charging or putting drug or alcohol users/abusers in jail is valid.

I'd say that when people have access to opportunities and have the right supports, they tend to do better in life than when they are charged and locked up.  I just don't think the state should be able to charge you for what you do to your own body. 

I will pretty much always believe a cop who shoots someone who had a knife.  You said you thought they were overpaid, but you expect them to take on someone with a knife just because they are bigger.

I agree about abusers.  I believe in the right of anyone to do whatever they want with their bodies, including abuse them, even unto death.  That said, the stuff they do under the influence of such abuse might warrant attention from the police.

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9 minutes ago, bcsapper said:

I will pretty much always believe a cop who shoots someone who had a knife.  You said you thought they were overpaid, but you expect them to take on someone with a knife just because they are bigger.

I agree about abusers.  I believe in the right of anyone to do whatever they want with their bodies, including abuse them, even unto death.  That said, the stuff they do under the influence of such abuse might warrant attention from the police.

There are circumstances in which it might be fair to fire a weapon at someone with a knife, if they are indeed about to stab you, but then we see clips like the one below.  Ask yourself if that pocket knife was a serious threat to any of the three officers pointing their guns at Sammy. 

   

Edited by Zeitgeist
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5 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

There are circumstances in which it might be fair to fire a weapon at someone with a knife, if they are indeed about to stab you, but then we see clips like the one below.  Ask yourself if that pocket knife was a serious threat to any of the three officers pointing their guns at Sammy. 

   

 

That "pocket knife" was a serious threat to other citizens as well.

Police are trained to attack the threat with escalating levels of force.  

 

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5 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

There are circumstances in which it might be fair to fire a weapon at someone with a knife, if they are indeed about to stab you, but then we see clips like the one below.  Ask yourself if that pocket knife was a serious threat to any of the three officers pointing their guns at Sammy. 

   

Yeah, I remember that.  Still, I think I would prefer to say that there are circumstances when it might be fair to refrain from firing a weapon at someone with a knife. I don't care if it's a pocket knife.  If you brandish a knife at anyone you pretty much deserve what you get.

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51 minutes ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

How many are willing to serve in law enforcement to "fix the problem" ? 

The number of people who apply to be police - with the high salary, benefits, and early retirement for very little education - is overwhelming.  

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6 minutes ago, Michael Hardner said:

The number of people who apply to be police - with the high salary, benefits, and early retirement for very little education - is overwhelming.  

 

Then why are women only 22% of law enforcement ranks in Canada ?

Where are the "overwhelming" numbers of social justice warriors willing/doing the job ?

 

Quote

Police work is extremely challenging. In my opinion, the ideal cop, male or female, is an androgynous combination of psychologist, minister, diplomat, politician, doctor, parent, historian, stunt-car driver, guardian, enforcer, athlete, combat social worker, and sleuth. 

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/cop-doc/201903/women-make-good-cops-why-arent-there-more-them

 

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11 minutes ago, bcsapper said:

Yeah, I remember that.  Still, I think I would prefer to say that there are circumstances when it might be fair to refrain from firing a weapon at someone with a knife. I don't care if it's a pocket knife.  If you brandish a knife at anyone you pretty much deserve what you get.

That’s how we end up with public outrage, because too many police keep putting out candles with firehoses.  “Brandishing” the knife becomes the excuse to fire.  It’s shoot to kill and the “threat” isn’t so threatening.    

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5 minutes ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

 

1. Then why are women only 22% of law enforcement ranks in Canada ?

2. Where are the "overwhelming" numbers of social justice warriors willing/doing the job ?

 

 

1. Not as many women apply as men.
2. I don't know how you would survey for that.  Feel free to Google it, I suppose.

It's pretty hard to "get in", from the many people I personally new who didn't want to go to school for 4 years to have a chance at making 6-figures and retiring at 55.

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1 minute ago, Zeitgeist said:

That’s how we end up with public outrage, because too many police keep putting out candles with firehoses.  “Brandishing” the knife becomes the excuse to fire.  It’s shoot to kill and the “threat” isn’t so threatening.    

 

Sure...always lots of outrage after the fact, as in long term care conditions that were known for years.

Eliminating the police does not change the underlying threat to the public from a "Sammy".

 

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1 minute ago, Michael Hardner said:

1. Not as many women apply as men.
2. I don't know how you would survey for that.  Feel free to Google it, I suppose.

It's pretty hard to "get in", from the many people I personally new who didn't want to go to school for 4 years to have a chance at making 6-figures and retiring at 55.

 

So those who want to serve and are qualified to do so "get in", but those who are more qualified to protest and bitch about police do not ?

Seems like a self fulfilling hiring and policy dynamic to me.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

 

Sure...always lots of outrage after the fact, as in long term care conditions that were known for years.

Eliminating the police does not change the underlying threat to the public from a "Sammy".

 

I’m not suggesting eliminating the police, but the focus of police work must change because some of the current mandate is increasingly seen by the public, especially certain groups, as a disservice rather than a service.  There are people who haven’t committed crimes who believe that if they’re pulled over by the wrong cop, their lives might be destroyed.  I don’t think that’s just paranoia at work.  

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58 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

It comes down to appropriate use of force.  There are ways to remove protesters from a location where they are trespassing without shooting or brutalizing people.

I don't know of anywhere in Canada protesters have been shot to remove them. And what force level police apply is generally a reflection of what force level people use to resist being moved.

58 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

Something tells me that the twenty-something girl with the knife could have been contained by the big male officers who came to "check to make sure she's okay" without shooting her to death.  We'll never know because we're getting the second hand report from the shooter and his partner.

Police in Canada are not taught how to disarm a person with a weapon. They are not given much in the way of hand-to-hand combat training. They are trained to use their firearm on anyone who approaches them too closely with a weapon and refuses to stop.

58 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

Yes I don't think that charging or putting drug or alcohol users/abusers in jail is valid.

Most people disagree.

58 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

I'd say that when people have access to opportunities and have the right supports, they tend to do better in life than when they are charged and locked up.  I just don't think the state should be able to charge you for what you do to your own body. 

The problem is what you do to your own body often then runs into what your body does to other people.

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5 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

I’m not suggesting eliminating the police, but the focus of police work must change because some of the current mandate is increasingly seen by the public, especially certain groups, as a disservice rather than a service. 

No, it actually isn't. The same groups who distrusted police last month distrust police this month. Most Canadians (and Americans) support the police. Don't think that the mainstream media is in any way a reflection of popular opinion.

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1 minute ago, Zeitgeist said:

I’m not suggesting eliminating the police, but the focus of police work must change because some of the current mandate is increasingly seen by the public, especially certain groups, as a disservice rather than a service.  There are people who haven’t committed crimes who believe that if they’re pulled over by the wrong cop, their lives might be destroyed.  I don’t think that’s just paranoia at work.  

 

Still too vague...what exactly are you proposing ?

Police serve as agents and enforcers of the law established by city, provincial, and federal jurisdiction.   

Police actions are a symptom of larger expectations and demands by society.    Some police officers become hardened and dehumanized by their experiences.

 

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