President Obama has taken some action after last weeks protests and following the death of Michael Brown and 12 year old Tamir rice who was also gunned down by police for having a toy gun.
Today was pretty much dedicated to discussion and policy regarding this issue, the President pledged $263 million in Federal funding for nation-wide police training along with 50,000 body cameras.
According to The Verge:
The cameras are designed to provide a definitive record of police activities, and have become a frequent demand in the wake of the Ferguson protests. The protests began with the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager killed by the police in Ferguson.
We know that we will need way more than 50,000 body cameras for all of our police officers and of course logistics will have to be clearly stated. For example, when do they wear them, are they battery operated, what penalty will an officer receive if he is found not actively wearing his camera and becomes part of an altercation.
There is also some rumbling about privacy laws in certain states which is also a huge consideration to make. From our perspective though when an officer is on active duty especially in tense situations, video surveillance is perfect for keeping everyone accountable and privacy goes out the window.
A significant portion of the training involves teaching police about the responsible use of paramilitary equipment such as assault rifles, expanded riot gear, and armored trucks.
We appreciate Obama’s attempt at addressing the issue, it is a start to fixing what is an ongoing issue for all of us. This will not be easy to accomplish but at least the death of these children are not in vain and we might save some lives in the future. We have at least 750,000 police officers in this country so we have 700,000 more to go.
Lets get to work!
Featured image: Frederic Legrand – COMEO / Shutterstock.com