There are occasional publicized reports on police brutality, but it is far more common in our society than we are made to believe. Police brutality has been an issue for many years, and it remains a major concern for those of the minority community. These minorities have been subjected, for many decades, to violence by those in law enforcement in the United States. More often than not, racial profiling is a driving factor in police brutality. The issue of police brutality is not a new one; it has become more focused on in recent years due to certain cases that have proved to be of extreme violence and have been linked to racial profiling, such as the beating of Rodney King. The incident that had happened to Rodney King is a tragic one, but one that accurately reflects what the police force is capable of doing: wrongly deciding to commit a heinous crime based upon racial reasons influenced by our society’s media, an especially notable misinterpretation of the situation at hand for something relatively more sexual than intended, and based on the grounds that these authoritative figures are given liberty to do as they please by their domineering allies who, in hopes of preserving their power and social standing, are always only looking out for themselves by any means necessary.
Rodney King was born in Sacramento, California, but was raised in Pasadena, California by his mother and alcoholic father. Two years prior to the beating, King had robbed a store and was convicted and sentenced to two years of imprisonment. On the night of March 2, 1991, King and his two friends had just spent the night watching basketball and drinking at a friend’s house. A blood alcohol test taken more than five hours after King’s arrest showed a level of 0.079 percent, just below the 0.08 percent blood-alcohol level that in California is presumptive evidence of intoxication. Extrapolating from this figure, state prosecutors and defense attorneys stipulated that King’s
Cited: Cannon, Lou. Official Negligence: How Rodney King and the Riots Changed Los Angeles and the LAPD. New York: Times Books, 1997.