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ShaunKing

Mr.Bayer
English11APd.2
12/9/14
AbuseofPower
PolicebrutalityhasrecentlybecomeanalarminginjusticeallacrossoftheUnitedStates.
Officersalloverthecountryaremakingminoritiessubjecttoexcessiveandunnecessaryforce.
RecentincidentssuchasthecasesofTrayvonMartin,MichaelBrown,andEricGarnerhave
broughtmuchattentiontopolicebrutality,andthepublichasbeenheavilyspeakingoutand
protestingagainstpoliceforcesinvariouscitiesoftheworld.However,thisinjusticeisnot
somethingunheardofinthiscountry.Policehavediscriminatedminoritiesforyears,andvery
rarelyareofficerspunishedjustlyfortheircrimes.Inordertoreducetheamountofpolice
brutalityintheUnitedStates,itisnecessarytoimplementbodycamsintoeverypolice
departmentaroundthecountry.
IfthepoliceofficerwhoshotandkilledMichaelBrownhad
beenwearingacamera,thenationmightalreadyknowwho'stellingthetruthaboutwhat
happenedthattragicdayinFerguson,Mo.Instead,toomanyencountersbetweenpoliceand
civiliansproducewildlyconflictingaccountsthataredifficult,timeconsumingandexpensiveto
resolve.(USAToday).

Thisisjustanotherpieceofevidencethatshowsthesignificantimpact
thesecameraswouldmake.Asforthecost
wecanpayforthesecamerasbyreducingtheamount
offundingformilitaryandusingthatextramoneyforthecameras.

ThisissueiscurrentlyamajorproblemintheUnitedStates.Therehavebeenmanycases
whereinnocentcivilianshavebeenassaultedandsometimesmurderedatthehandsofpolicemen.
InearlyAugustofthisyear,MichaelBrown,ablackteenagerwasunarmedandgunneddownby
awhitepoliceofficernamedDarrenWilson.MichaelBrownwasmorethan20feetawayfrom
DarrenWilsonatthemomentoftheshooting.Afterthistragedy,thecommunityofFergusonand
communitiesalloverthecountrybecameoutragedwhenthepublicwasinformedthatDarren
Wilsonwouldnotbeindictedforthemurder.Protestsandviolentriotspursuedshortlyafterthe
announcement,whichledtoBarackObamaaddressingthenationinaspeech,tryingtoconvince
thepublictostaycalmintheaftermathofthedecision.InNewYorkonJuly17thofthisyear,
anotherunarmedblackmanwaskilledbythepolice.DanielPantaleo,anofficerintheNewYork
PoliceDepartment,putEricGarnerinabannedchokeholdafterhewassellingillegalcigarettes.
EricGarneryelledoutmultipletimesthathecouldntbreathebeforepassingout.Hediedlater
thatday,andthearrestwasallcaughtonvideobyabystander.Pantaleowasalsonotindictedfor
themurderandthisfurtherenragedthepublic.Butthereareevenmorecasesthanthese,hundreds
ofcaseswherepolicewrongfullykillcompletelyinnocentpeople.Asasolution,manydifferent
organizationsarespeakingoutagainstbrutality.AnexampleisCommunitiesAgainstPolice
Brutality,anallvolunteerorganization.Ontheirwebsiteyoucanfindalistofnamesandshort
biographiesofinnocentpeoplewhomwerekilled.Thisproblemisimportanttothestabilityof
thiscountry,sotherehastobeastoptoallthechaos.
Thetopicofequippingpoliceofficerswithbodycamerashasbeenturneddownmany
timesbecauseofthelackoffunding,butcostshouldntbeanissuebecausewecanusemoney
thatisusuallyusedformilitaryfunding.Ibelievethatthefundingformilitary,whichwas

693.485billiondollarsintheyear2010,isfartoohigh.Bytakingjustafractionofthatcost,
around5milliondollars,wecouldsupplycamerastoeverypoliceofficerintheUnitedStates.
Withthislowcost,wecouldgreatlyreducethenumberoflivestakenbythebrokenlaw
enforcementsystem.Inrequiringeachpoliceofficertowearabodycamera,wecouldtrulymake
adifferenceinthecorruptsystem.Scoresoflawenforcementagenciesalreadyusebodyworn
cameras,andcallsformorehaveonlygrownacrosstheU.S.afterrecentcasesinvolvinguseof
forcehavepittedthewordofpoliceofficersagainstangryresidents.(MattPearce).Thisinfers
thatresidentsareopentotheseideasandthattheymightevenhelpfundtheseprograms.Inan
articlefromParis,theytalkaboutsomeincidentsinwhichpoliceofficersdowearcamerasand
thearticletalksaboutthebenefits.Aconvenientfeatureofthecameraisits"preeventvideo
buffer,"whichcontinuouslyrecordsandholdsthemostrecent30secondsofvideowhenthe
cameraisoff.Withthisfeature,theinitialactivitythatpromptedtheofficertoturnonthecamera
ismorelikelytobecapturedautomatically,too.(RandallStross).Thiswoulddrasticallymakea
differenceincaseslikeMichaelBrowns,itwouldshowthetrueintentionsofthepoliceofficers
whichwouldmostlikelymakemorepoliceofficersservetimewhentheybecomeinvolvedin
unjustifiablesituations.Thesebodycamerasareanecessarytoolinthissociety,andithaseven
beenproventhatthey
Toomanyofficersinthiscountryaretakingadvantageoftheirpositionandabusingtheir
power,andtheonlywaytoreducetheamountofpolicebrutalityistheimplementationofbody
camsineverysinglepolicedepartmentacrossAmerica.Tofundthis,thefederalgovernmentcan
decreasespendingformilitarypurposesandusethisextramoneytopayforthecameras.This
countrywasbuiltuponfreedom,andU.S.citizensshouldbeabletofeelsafewhenaroundpolice,

andnothavetobeafraidofbeingassaultedorevenmurderedbyofficerswhowereswornto
serveandprotectthem.

Bibliography
Pearce,Matt."GettingPoliceCameraReady."
LosAngelesTimes
27Sept.2014:n.pag.
Los
AngelesTimes
.27Sept.2014.Web.14Dec.2014.
Stross,Randall."VideosofPolicefromWearableCameras."Editorial.
InternationalHerald
Tribune
[Paris]8Apr.2013:n.pag.
SIRS
.Web.14Dec.2014.
"WhenCopsWearCameras,EverybodyBehavesBetter."
UsaToday
2014aug26:A.6DB
SIRSIssuesResearcher.Web.22Dec.2014.<http://sks.sirs.com>.