Right here is the Introduction to my third version. (You may wish to ship a replica of this guide both the paperback or a Kindle to a good friend who Is a police officer, native politician, or group organizer.)
Additionally a brand new chapter: “George Floyd: The place to from Right here?” On this guide I counsel a means ahead. A lot of what I’ve written is contained on this weblog which started in 2011 and now have over 1,500 posts and has been considered over 500,000 instances. However after George Floyd’s homicide in Minneapolis and tons of of different questionable makes use of of police pressure since 2015 when Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, extra wanted to be mentioned.
“A lot has transpired in American policing for the reason that first publication of this guide in 2012. There was the Occupy Motion (in the course of the guide’s closing phases in 2011), the killing of Michael Brown in 2014, after which our nation (and a great a part of the world) raised its collective conscience after watching George Floyd’s loss of life in 2020. This give attention to Floyd’s loss of life continued to conviction of Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin the next yr.
“If American policing ought to have realized something throughout this decade of police makes use of of pressure is that the best way issues are being performed are usually not producing their supposed outcome: utilizing pressure to quell an meeting of comparatively peaceable protesters doesn’t work and killing an inordinate variety of Black youths doesn’t result in their compliance (not to mention their belief and help).
“A method of policing that is determined by the specter of lethal pressure shouldn’t be one that ought to exist in a free and democratic political system; particularly one that’s turning into increasingly more various and fewer and fewer white.
“What I’ve proposed to enhance, even rework, policing is a method that’s harmonious with the nationwide values we proclaim as ‘we the folks.’ We developed this technique of policing in Madison, Wisconsin by way of the early Nineteen Seventies and into the Nineties. It’s a system of delivering democratic, community-oriented police companies in a metropolis of 1 / 4 of one million residents wherein, the place roughly 10 p.c of the inhabitants are residents of coloration. Close by, 40,000 college students attend the College of Wisconsin.
“Madison was and is a progressive metropolis which considers itself fairly liberal. But a current examine of Madison and Dane County, referred to as ‘Race to Fairness,’ revealed that each one shouldn’t be effectively in Mad Metropolis. As a substitute, the report uncovered
…the pervasiveness and the extremity of the county’s black-white disparities, that are typically extra excessive than these present in most different jurisdictions throughout the state and nation. There’s not a single indicator that we analyzed wherein African American well-being is on par with that of whites. In some ways, after all, this shouldn’t be surprising. The laborious reality is that African People fare worse than whites on nearly all standing indicators in nearly each a part of the nation. What’s extraordinary about Dane County’s numbers, nevertheless, is the sheer magnitude of the disparities that we present in most of the most basic standing indicators.
“To many who lived and labored in Madison and Dane County, this was a wake-up name that quickly dissipated. The general group angle was one among ‘Sure, issues could be troublesome for folks of coloration in our metropolis, however we’re definitely higher than different cities!’ This turned out to not be true.
“In gentle of this info and what we’re studying about Alexander Hamilton, ‘redlining,’ the sheer variety of lynchings all through the nation (from Selma to Duluth), the Tulsa bloodbath, and different race-biased actions is that we dwell in a racist society that’s each historic and current.
“It’s exactly inside that system that our nation’s police should function and should perceive and acknowledge how bias (a lot of it unconscious) impacts these of us who name ourselves white and profit from a racial privilege.
“It’s doable to stop the bondage wherein we put our police who should work on this system and liberate them so that they change into more practical and supported. Whether or not we prefer it or not, police are ready in our society to both undermine or reinforce the dominate values we profess as a nation: ‘reality, justice and the American means!’ (Which, by the way, comes from my boyhood and Superman comics!) Nonetheless, the origins of those values are present in our Declaration of Independence and our Structure. We People do imagine we’re the “good guys” on the earth, that our system of presidency is the perfect: a “authorities of the folks, by the folks and for the folks.” We will intensify these values by bettering our police.
“This has at all times been my dream. From that spring day in 1960 when a younger Marine got here off energetic obligation, took an oath of honor, grew to become a police officer, and continued to be one for the following 33 years. We will make our goals come true. However with the intention to try this, we should strongly imagine in them and persist in making them change into actual.”