This I Believe

Kyle - lutherville, Maryland
Entered on October 3, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe police brutality is a serious issue in the world today. Perhaps when I was handcuffed and put in the back of a cop car for an alcohol citation in my freshman year of high school it planted a seed of fear and terror for the police in me. The goal of law enforcement is to protect the people and uphold the law. However throughout the history of law enforcement police officers have continually over stepped their boundaries. Everyone has heard the story of how Rodney King and how his skull was broken while police beat him with batons for no apparent or real reason. 11 officers stood around letting this happen in front of their eyes. More recently, a Florida student was tazed by officers at a forum for John Kerry. The student, Andrew Meyer, asked a few inappropriate questions and was later arrested on the ground and tazed as he cried for help. These are the cases that the public does here about. In 2006, a US department of Justice Report showed 26,556 complaints of police brutality. Law enforcement agents often times feel as though they are above the law. Whether it be turning on their lights to get through a traffic jam, or excessively tasing a student, police never seem to be accountable for their actions.

Police are supposed to be people that the public looks to for safety, not people we fear being beaten by. As an 18 year old in college, I have seen police use excessive force first hand when dealing with my classmates. Cops treat younger adults with no respect at all, and expect respect in return. They step over the boundaries and do not always recognize citizen’s rights. If police are not held to the same standards as the rest of the public, they will always take advantage of it. I do not mean to discredit the many police officers who are honest, good men. These men do save lives and do protect the well being of people. However, there are always those crooked cops out there, and there are more than one might think. It is a shame that when I drive by cops there is an instilled fear in me that sends goose bumps down my spine. I have actually never felt protected by police, but many times I have felt threatened. Police physically abusing a person is a total disregard of the law and of their job. There are many times when force is necessary, however there are many times when force is used and it is entirely unnecessary. If these crooked cops had more respect for the people, then the entire police department would gain more respect from us.