Police Brutality

Topics: Police, Police brutality, Police officer Pages: 6 (1584 words) Published: May 31, 2015
A Brutal Force

Central Idea/Thesis: Police brutality should be regulated with greater strength and objectivity. INTRODUCTION

I. Police brutality is constantly made known to us all through mass media, but I hadn’t ever taken the time to truly grasp the severity of it until it hit close to home. A. Three weeks ago, a close family friend was brutally beaten in front of his children at a family gathering by the police. B. My purpose is to persuade my audience that police brutality should be regulated with greater strength and objectivity. C. Today I will discuss how police brutality is a major problem throughout the United States, as well as two of its main causes and how this problem requires us to deal with both of these causes.

TRANSITION I will now discuss my first main point.

II. Police brutality has been a problem throughout the United States for as long as its history goes back. A. This threat to our security only continues to develop at a ferocious rate. 1. Recent news broadcasts have been supplied with a plethora of cases of police brutality throughout the country. a) The recent cases of Trayvon Martin, the horrors in Ferguson, and the shooting of an unarmed 93 year-old Pearlie Golden are all examples of the growing problem of police brutality. b) The families of these victims will continue to suffer from the loss of their loved ones, as will those that have had their eyes opened to these horrors. 2. This brutality at the hands of those that are supposed to protect us, has begun to surpass other terrors we are faced with. a) “The increase in police brutality in this country is a frightening reality. In the last decade alone the number of people murdered by police has reached 5,000. The number of soldiers killed since the inception of the Iraq war, 4489.” (Global Research News, 2014) (verbatim) b) This is the harsh reality we are faced with.

B. This increase of police brutality has caused a decrease in the trust of our safety in the hands of the police. 1. Through the misuse and abuse of their power, law enforcement has caused a loss of trust from the citizens that ultimately supply their power. (The Trauma Foundation, 2002) (paraphrase) a) People will become paranoid that all officers are corrupt. b) This prevents the respectable officers from being trusted in their actions and abilities to protect. 2. If citizens lose trust in law enforcement’s ability to protect and serve them, social and political unrest will become a reality much greater than we can comprehend. a) Ferguson County is an excellent example of this consequence. b) This will cause an irreparable strife.

III. There are two main causes fueling the brutality against citizens at the hands of law enforcement agents. A. Standards for what define law enforcement brutality vary greatly from place to place, which leads to minimal consequences for their actions. 1. “Excess is in the eyes of the beholder.” (William Terrill, 2014) (verbatim) a) William Terrill is a former police officer who is now a criminal justice professor. b) “To one officer ‘objectively reasonable’ means that if you don’t give me your license, I get to use soft hands, and in another town the same resistance means I can pull you through the car window, [or] I can tase you.” (William Terrill, 2014) 2. Because of this, consequences for their brutal actions are usually minimal. a) For instance, in New Jersey 99% of complaints against police officers went uninvestigated. (Huffington Post, 2014) b) “Only one out of every three accused cops are convicted nationwide, while the conviction rate for civilians is literally double that.” (Bonnie Kristian, 2014) c) It has been revealed that taxpayers “are paying three times for officers who repeatedly commit abuses: once to cover their salaries while they commit abuses; next to pay settlements or civil jury awards against officers; and a third time through payments into police...

References: "Shielded from Justice:." Shielded from Justice:. 1 Jan. 1997. Web. 14 Nov. 2014.
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