George Floyd

5 Ways to Curtail Police Violence and Prevent More Deaths Like George Floyd's

From tighter use-of-force rules to eliminating qualified immunity, here are some reforms that could make a real difference.


According to the initial police account of George Floyd's deadly May 25 encounter with Minneapolis cops, he "physically resisted officers," who called an ambulance because he "appeared to be suffering medical distress." The contradictory information that later emerged, which culminated in criminal charges against all four officers, came largely from cellphone, security, and body camera footage.

Without that evidence, the case might have become a swearing match between the cops, who were arresting Floyd for using a counterfeit $20 bill, and the bystanders who watched in horror as Officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes, ignoring his complaints that he could not breathe, past the point where he stopped moving and had no detectable pulse. The prompt dismissal of Chauvin and his colleagues, and the charges that prosecutors began to file four days after the incident, once again show how ubiquitous cameras can help hold police accountable when they abuse their powers.

Yet that knowledge was little comfort to Floyd's family and friends, who were wondering how such a thing could have happened in the first place rather than marveling at the police-correcting value of cameras worn by officers, carried by pedestrians, and mounted on storefronts. For all their potential to reveal and publicize police misconduct, the evidence that cameras make it less likely is so far equivocal, and they manifestly did not save Floyd's life. But there are some reforms that could prevent other people from meeting a similar fate.

1. Ban Chokeholds

The most obvious problem highlighted by Floyd's death is police restraint techniques that can fatally obstruct breathing. Floyd was not only pinned by Chauvin's knee; he was lying on his stomach with his hands cuffed behind him as two other officers applied pressure to his back and legs.

The autopsy report issued by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office describes the cause of death as "cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint and neck compression." An independent autopsy commissioned by Floyd's family, by contrast, said he died from "mechanical asphyxiation." But both reports agreed that the manner of death was homicide.

Law enforcement experts who watched cellphone video of the incident immediately condemned the officers' conduct, especially Chauvin's application of his knee to Floyd's neck. "The maneuver, billed as a means to gain control of a thrashing suspect, requires pressure on the side of an individual's neck," the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported. "At Hennepin Technical College, which trains about half of Minnesota's police officers, students were taught to use a form of the technique until at least 2016."

Mylan Masson, a veteran Minneapolis police officer who used to direct the college's law enforcement and criminal justice education center, said it was clear that Chauvin used the technique inappropriately. "Once the [officer] is in control, then you release," Masson told the Star Tribune. "That's what use of force is: You use it till the threat has stopped." George Kirkham, professor emeritus at Florida State University's College of Criminology and Criminal Justice, called the prolonged compression of Floyd's neck "outrageous, excessive, unreasonable force under the circumstances," since the officers were dealing with a suspected property criminal who was "prone on the ground" and "no threat to anyone."

The possibility that such techniques will be misused with deadly effect has led some police departments to eschew them. A 2016 review of 91 major police departments'  policies by the Police Use of Force Project found that 21 of them explicitly prohibited "chokeholds and strangleholds."

The issue received renewed attention in 2014, when Eric Garner died following a struggle with New York City officers who were trying to arrest him for selling untaxed cigarettes. Like Floyd, Garner complained that he could not breathe. As with Floyd, that did not deter the cops from using what turned out to be deadly violence against an unarmed man accused of a petty crime.

Video showed Officer Daniel Pantaleo using what looked like a chokehold, a maneuver the New York Police Department had banned. Pantaleo and his supporters denied that, saying his arms slipped while he was trying to use a department-approved takedown technique. The medical examiner concluded that Garner died from "compression of neck (choke hold), compression of chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police." Despite the official department policy against chokeholds, a police review board had received more than 1,000 complaints about the technique during the previous five years.

As that suggests, official policy goes only so far, although it presumably has some restraining effect. After Floyd's death, the San Diego Police Department announced that it would ban the carotid restraint, a "sleeper hold" that aims to induce unconsciousness by applying pressure to the carotid arteries on the sides of the neck, thereby cutting off the flow of blood to the brain. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio this week reversed his position on a bill that would criminalize chokeholds, saying he would support it as long as there was an exception for "life or death" situations.

2. Restrict Other Kinds of Force

In addition to chokeholds, the Police Use of Force Project considered seven other policies in its 2016 report. It found that 34 of 91 departments required officers to use de-escalation techniques, when feasible, before resorting to force; 77 had policies describing the types of force that are appropriate to use in response to different kinds of resistance; 56 required verbal warnings, when feasible, before the use of deadly force; 19 prohibited officers from shooting at moving vehicles that do not pose a deadly threat; 31 required officers to exhaust all reasonable alternatives before using deadly force; 30 required officers to intervene when their colleagues use excessive force, as three officers failed to do in Floyd's case; and 15 required officers to report all uses and threats of force—as the Minneapolis Police Department already does.

State lawmakers also can impose restrictions on police use of force. A California law enacted last year says the use of lethal force is justified only when "the officer reasonably believes, based on the totality of the circumstances, that deadly force is necessary to defend against an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury to the officer or to another person, or to apprehend a fleeing person for a felony that threatened or resulted in death or serious bodily injury, if the officer reasonably believes that the person will cause death or serious bodily injury to another unless the person is immediately apprehended." That standard replaced a looser one allowing police to use "reasonable force" during an arrest.

3. Make It Easier to Fire Bad Cops

While the officers who arrested Floyd were fired immediately, that is by no means typical in excessive-force cases. Pantaleo was not fired until five years after Eric Garner's death, after a New York grand jury declined to indict him and the U.S. Justice Department decided not to charge him.

An administrative judge concluded, and Police Commissioner James O'Neill agreed, that Pantaleo recklessly used a prohibited chokehold, applying pressure to Garner's neck in a way that inflicted injury and helped trigger an asthma attack. But the New York City Patrolmen's Benevolent Association backed Pantaleo until the end and condemned his dismissal.

Police unions don't just reflexively defend officers who injure or kill people, even in situations where the facts are damning. They insist on contracts that make it very difficult to fire bad cops.

"Consider the binding arbitration that has become a standard feature of virtually all police contracts, which are often negotiated in secrecy," Reason's Shikha Dalmia writes. "Binding arbitration allows cops to appeal any disciplinary action taken by their superiors to outside arbitrators such as retired judges. In theory, these folks are supposed to be neutral third parties. In reality, they are usually in the pockets of unions and dismiss or roll back a striking two-thirds of all actions, even against cops with a history of abuse and excessive violence. The upshot is that police chiefs are powerless to clean house, even as community complaints pile up."

As Reason's Peter Suderman notes, Sgt. Brian Miller, a Broward County sheriff's deputy who conspicuously failed to intervene in the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, was fired for "neglect of duty." But Miller challenged his dismissal with support from his police union, and last month he "was not only reinstated but given full back pay."

During a reckless middle-of-the-night raid last March, police in Louisville, Kentucky, killed the unarmed Breonna Taylor after her boyfriend mistook the invaders for criminals and fired a shot at them. "Taylor's death resulted in calls for the officers involved to be fired," Suderman notes, "but Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer warned that the process would be slow. A significant part of why he expected it to take so long, he said, was the city's collective bargaining agreement with the police union. Fischer lamented the process, saying he recognizes 'the system is not a best practice for our community.'"

4. Increase Police Transparency

Dalmia notes several other "special protections that police enjoy." They include rules "allowing police departments to destroy civilian complaint records against officers," "giving cops involved in shootings several days before filing their statements," and "barring citizens from filing complaints anonymously and revealing their names to the offending officer."

In Pantaleo's case, Commissioner O'Neill publicly released the findings of the department's internal investigation, deviating from the usual policy, favored by police unions, of keeping such information secret. "New York state law shields police discipline records from public view," Reason's Scott Shackford notes, concealing both the inconsistency of penalties and the histories of officers who are accused of wrongdoing.

Derek Chauvin "had 18 prior complaints filed against him" with the Minneapolis Police Department's Internal Affairs Division, CNN reported after Floyd's death. "It's unclear what the internal affairs complaints against [Chauvin] were for," CNN said, since "MPD did not provide additional details." Tou Thao, the officer who not only failed to intervene as Chauvin kneeled on Floyd's neck but physically prevented bystanders from doing so, "had six complaints filed with internal affairs, one of which was still open….The other five complaints had been closed without discipline."

As C.J. Ciaramella reported here this week, "New York civil liberties groups are again trying to roll back the state's expansive police secrecy laws" in the wake of Floyd's death. California already has made some progress on that front, Steven Greenhut notes, with a 2019 law requiring that "police agencies release reports or findings related to police officers' discharge of a firearm or serious use of force, as well as sustained incidents by officers of sexual assault or dishonesty."

The lack of transparency can mean that even when one law enforcement agency manages to fire a bad cop, and even when he is decertified for police work, another one hires him. "There is no nationwide mechanism allowing every police department in the country to access an applicant's work history with out-of-state departments," Anthony Fisher pointed out in Reason several years ago. "This information gap allows officers banned from working as police in one state to secure law enforcement employment in another state."

5. Abolish Qualified Immunity

Under 42 USC 1983, people can sue police officers for violating their constitutional rights under color of law. But since 1982, the Supreme Court has said such lawsuits are allowed only when police violate a "clearly established" right, which in practice often means that victims of police abuse have no recourse if they cannot cite precedents with nearly identical facts. And since 2009, when the justices said courts can dismiss lawsuits against cops without even deciding whether they violated the plaintiff's rights, it has become increasingly difficult to find the precedents necessary to overcome such "qualified immunity."

The upshot, as 5th Circuit Judge Don Willett has observed, is that "important constitutional questions go unanswered precisely because those questions are yet unanswered." Willett, an outspoken critic of qualified immunity, added that it "smacks of unqualified impunity, letting public officials duck consequences for bad behavior—no matter how palpably unreasonable—as long as they were the first to behave badly." Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg—who don't agree about much else—likewise have expressed concern about the qualified immunity doctrine.

This term the Supreme Court is considering a bunch of petitions that provide an opportunity to revisit that doctrine, which has become a license for outrageous police conduct. The defendants in those cases include police officers who shot a 10-year-old boy while trying to kill his dog; wrecked a woman's home by bombarding it with tear gas grenades after she agreed to let the cops inside so they could arrest her former boyfriend; knocked out a woman and broke her collarbone by lifting her up and throwing her to the ground while responding to an erroneous report that she had been the victim of a domestic assault; and sicced a police dog on a burglary suspect who said he had already surrendered and was sitting on the ground with his hands up.

"Ending qualified immunity wouldn't end police brutality," C.J. Ciaramella notes, "but it would put departments and individual officers on notice that they can no longer brazenly harm and kill people without consequences." In case the Supreme Court decides not to step in, Rep. Justin Amash (L–Mich.), joined by Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D–Mass.), plans to introduce a bill that would put an end to qualified immunity. Three senators—Ed Markey (D–Mass.), Cory Booker (D–N.J.), and Kamala Harris (D–Calif.)—are working on similar legislation.

"Qualified immunity is the cornerstone of America's near-zero accountability policy for law enforcement," says Clark Neily, vice president for criminal justice at the Cato Institute. "It is an illegitimate, judge-made legal doctrine that has systematically undermined our right to be free from the illegitimate use of force by government agents and that helped set the stage for the brutalization of George Floyd and countless others, particularly in communities of color. We applaud the legislative efforts of the numerous members of Congress—in both the House and the Senate— who have stepped forward to right this historical wrong and create a culture of genuine accountability for police, prosecutors, and other public officials."

[This post has been revised to correct the citation to federal law, add information about complaints against Chauvin and Thao, and correct the description of California's old standard for the use of lethal force.]

NEXT: Amidst Calls for Abolishing the Police, Universities Cut Ties With City Police Departments

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  1. Abolish Qualified Immunity

    Some genius on Twitter made the argument that ending qualified immunity meant that no one would choose to become a law enforcement officer because they could be mired in lawsuits. Obviously a ridiculous statement as physicians somehow find a way to weather malpractice suits.

    Imagine if law enforcement had to purchase liability insurance. Bad actors would very quickly find themselves uninsurable and into another line of work.

    1. “The AMA report shows that obstetricians can expect to pay around $150,000 in annual premiums for malpractice insurance. If your specialiy requires fewer actual procedures, you can likely get by in the neighborhood of $30,000 to $50,000”
      What’s the starting salary for cops?

      1. Good enough if you don’t bother “policing” as a police officer. Why should they not become an officer when they can collect a check and just not bother interfering with black criminals?

        1. Rabbi Harv, maybe they can just collect their salary and not enforce victimless non-compliance with laws such as anti-drug laws as in the Breonna Taylor case, gun laws (stop & frisk”), tax laws, laws against selling “loosies” as in the Garner case, etc. If any cops are willing to initiate the use of force to enforce absolutely morally wrongful laws, then they deserve all the legal liability that can be heaped upon them.

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      3. I don’ t know many cops who do ob/gyn work

        and I mean fuck man you picked one of the highest premium specialties did you think that stupid fucking point would stand?


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      4. Provider’s at my job are covered by the practice’s malpractice policy.

        Police forces would probably do that. So how much would it cost the taxpayer? At one point NYC was paying about 100 million a year for police settlements. It will be expensive.

        1. ^ This.

          If NYC can afford 100 million a year in settlements they can probably afford just about any premium with taxpayer cash.

          And, just like in Medical, if you fuck up enough to threaten the organizations rate you can bet your ass they’ll be looking to fire you ASAP.

        2. Having the largest prison population in the world is also expensive.

        3. Only because the police are running unfettered,the cops go free and the city pays for what evil deed they did.

          1. These are excellent ideas of reforming the police system here in the United States. To those who think that defunding and abolishing the police here in the United States: You’re dead wrong here! An extensive and extensive overhaul and reform of the police is needed, not their elimination. The police are needed, whether people want them or not.

            Ending qualified immunity to being disciplined, reprimanded, and/or permanently dismissed from their respective police departments if they’ve seriously injured or killed a suspect due to using excessive force on them is a step in the right direction, as well.

            1. An extensive and extensive overhaul and reform of the police is needed, not their elimination. The police are needed, whether people want them or not.

              You keep saying this but saying it doesn’t make it so. “police are needed” by whom? for what?

      5. If the average cop causes so much wrongful damage that the malpractice rates are $150,000 per year per cop, maybe society needs a lot less cops. In that case, the number of cops will go down and the salaries will go up due to market forces, supply and demand. The only cops remaining will be those valuable and competent enough to command a salary to be able to afford malpractice insurance, and well-trained and restrained enough so as to not present such risk of liability and not such high malpractice liability insurance rates. If liability shields are removed the free-market will respond to provide adequate officers who will not present unreasonable risks to the public, all at a fair market price.

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    3. There is an argument for something like qualified immunity, to cover situation where a reasonable person would have acted as the cop in question acted. The thing itself clearly goes too far; “I didn’t know strip searching a minor was a civil rights violation!”. Well, then, you need to be fired, and probably placed in a zoo with the rest of the monkeys. And if you get sued, tough. And your department should be sued for hiring someone with an IQ lower than a German Shepard.

    4. Here’s another idea. Take away their clubs, make them lock their firearms in their patrol cars, arm the police with *stun* weapons — hand-stunners (for close range), stun-batons (middle range) and Tasers (long range) — and train them in the use of such so extensively that it becomes an automatic reflex for a cop to reach for a stunner at the first sign of trouble. That will put a quick end to “resisting arrest” and any excuse for choke-holds.

      1. I have an even better idea.

        How about all the people who want to defund the police walk around any public housing project one night and get back to us if they survive?

        But always good to hear from those who live in safe suburban neighborhoods.

        1. Most people who live there do it every night and get to see daylight.

        2. How about people in those public housing projects not be legally prohibited from carrying firearms in self-defense? How about drug prohibition be ended and the homicide rate decrease like it did after the end of alcohol prohibition? How about phasing out government housing altogether?

      2. So when a scumbag on fentanyl and methamphetamine goes to shoot you feel safe in the fact that you will defend yourself with a stun gun. Stupidest fucking idea I’ve heard all day.

        1. What about a drunk? I hear they can be pretty unpredictable and downright dangerous! Someone on a Fentanyl and methamphetamine cocktail would have trouble walking, much less shooting. Besides, anyone who goes about shooting strangers is probably thoroughly insane enough that they wouldn’t need – or even want – to get high to do it. But it sure sounds scary, so get that tongue out and lick those government boots a little more eagerly! Stupidest attempt at fearmongering I’ve seen all month, and it’s been a DAMNED busy month!

          1. Meth is a stimulant, so somebody on methamphetamine can be rather dangerous, also. PCP or Angel Dust is also dangerous, because it makes people really psychotic.

        2. Pretty sure it doesn’t matter how much meth they take, if they’re on fentanyl they ain’t doin shit. And if they are somehow holding a gun up and able to pull the trigger the only place the bullets would go is into the ground 4 feet in front of their feet.

      3. How about having them put their phasers on stun…….in case your still in lala land I’m just kidding.

    5. Don’t forget that non-cops can help minimise police brutality with these few simple tricks.

    6. Liability insurance is a good market solution. However, there still remains the mystery that bad cops are supposedly surrounded by good cops who do nothing. How can that be? How can a cop call himself “good” if he can’t even police the bad cops he works with? Not only does that question go unanswered, it goes unasked in the MSM, and that begs the question: Why is MSM silently ignoring the police brutality? Who is killing the stories? If the MSM is so “bleeding heart liberal” why are they “willfully blind” to this and all authoritarianism? Could it be both parties are authoritarian? Could it be all politics is limited to choosing some form of rule, coercion? The choice to be free, to end the initiation of violence, threats, fraud is NEVER allowed, e.g., a ballot with “abolish this office” or “none are acceptable so leave the office unfilled”. Choice is an illusion.

      1. Why is MSM silently ignoring the police brutality? Who is killing the stories?

        Because the cops give them crime stories and details – nice, juicy, grisly, stories with nice gory, sordid details that sell papers, glue viewers’ eyes to the screen, get listeners and clicks, all of which increases revenues. They don’t want their sources to dry up.

        If the MSM is so “bleeding heart liberal” why are they “willfully blind” to this and all authoritarianism? Could it be both parties are authoritarian?

        Yes. And the media tend toward the authoritarian. The media like to think they are “making a difference”, “having an impact”, “driving change”. And more often than not, that means influencing the enacting of laws, not the repeal of laws. The media likes power like any politician likes power. And the media exercises that power via influence over government. If the government had less power, the media would have less power. The MSM likes to think they speak truth to power, when in reality, they are power.

        Whenever, the MSM do oppose or expose government, be glad. They tend to support power more than they oppose it.

    7. Do know how hard it is to sue a doctor or hospital. These people circle the wagons and cover each other. I believe we should be able to sue politicians when their actions and decisions result in harm or death to a person. While we’re at it they should be prosecuted for those actions. We should be able to prosecute, sue any and all those who give them cover. Lying to investigator and obstruction when they do. Now lets talk about teachers unions? NY City has buildings that’s used to house teachers who are either under investigation, under suspension. Unqualified, and bad teachers are protected by the unions. Teachers with questionable back rounds, or history are moved around much like the Catholic Church did with their rotten apples.
      Floyd was no role model, not by far. With his record why was he even allow to be free only to continue his life of crime. If the officer is found guilty he should be held accountable. Let the courts decide, and punish the rioters, arsonist, and looters. The real losers are the ones who live there, and have travel farther to get milk because businesses and store will not stay. Why would they?

      1. No respect or sympathy for the arsonists, looters and rioters, but when they destroy businesses and fuck up people’s livelihoods, damage property and physically assault people, they’re hurting themselves just as much.

        If they’re arrested and convicted in a court of law, and end up serving a jail sentence, especially if they’re over 18 years of age, they end up with a permanent record that will stymie their ability to get any kind of job, education, or learn some sort of a skill in order to support themselves.

      2. My understanding is that moving people around was the accepted policy at that time, so not just the Catholic church.

    8. 1. End the war on drugs, which is generating so much of the illegal behavior that is the basis for these problems.
      2. End qualified immunity.
      3. No more unions for any public sector employees.
      4. No more contracts between unions and politicians that put the taxpayers on the hook for compensation for bad behavior.
      5. if cops cannot afford liability insurance, then it should be funded from the pension funds for the cops, collectively.

      1. 6. ALL police activities, EVERYWHERE, should be recorded, at all times. Including, especially the FBI. 7. All recordings should be held by a third party, and be publicly available.

    9. Then we could simply move along to prisons renting prisoners from prison — under fully consentual contract — for work and a “monitored home” of their own to live in. This could be the next evolution of slavery in prison, where corporations promise to look out for a good worker’s welfare and take charge over their rehabilitation. And if they “escape” during course of their sentence, there will be consequences, and the corporation must recover them.

      Because if these officers have been trained to use unnecessary techniques to restrain suspects who may need medical attention, and the training means they may have acted ‘correctly,’ after a fashion, then how do you fault their training without adjusting the system that trains them the wrong way?

    10. Here’s another suggestion: make the cops leave their clubs and guns locked up in the squad car, and arm them with hand-stunners, stun-batons, and Tasers instead. Train them to a fare-thee-well with stunners until reaching for a stun-weapon becomes automatic. It’s really hard to kill someone with a stunner.

  2. From tighter use-of-force rules

    I still don’t believe ‘tighter use of force’ rules are the way to go. And surely libertarians don’t believe that a new regulation will fix the problem, right? Police are operating under far tighter use-of-force rules than ever in history and yet we have this problem.

    The issue is accountability. You can put all the tighter rules you want in place, but if those rules are violated and nothing happens, then your tighter rules are meaningless.

    Don’t kneel on an unarmed, non-resisting guy until he’s dead. I don’t need a tighter use-of-force rule to know that.

    1. Police have to face consequences, and they shouldn’t be able to use the “I followed procedures” excuse (ala Tamir Rice) to escape blame.

      It’s time to fall back on that Holy Grail of Libertarian First Principles: Personal Accountability. Police are accountable for their personal actions beyond departmental principles. And individuals who burn businesses while rioting are also held accountable for their actions.

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      2. That is not how police are taught.

    2. The correct ROE is to hold back until backup arrives so responsibility can be diffused between several officers. Another option would be to avoid arresting black people in general to prevent being railroaded by the media as a “racist” cop.

      1. Or just hire more Black cops and set them to patrolling the Black neighborhoods. There would still be incidents of police brutality, but it would be hard to make them into racial issues.

    3. So this is essentially a who watches the watchmen type scenario, in which case the only means I know of to address that type of corruption is citizen juries.

      And you’d have to give them near dictatorial powers to audit, investigate, and dismiss any part of the judiciary, from the commissioner to the prosecutor to the judges. Their breadth should be highly circumscribed, but in that range it should be near absolute.

      Unlikely to happen (community boards are mostly toothless), but if Minneapolis is considering disbanding its police department, then this is at least less outrageous.

      If successful, maybe we can move on to the legislature next.

    4. Yeah. The ‘ban chokeholds’ point is pretty idiotic and should be obviously so after Eric Garner. Some chokeholds are pretty obvious while others are only identified as chokeholds after the overweight asthmatic has been killed.

      “No one not injured prior to entering in your custody should die or be injured in your custody.” should be more than enough of a rule. It just needs to be enforced.

      1. From what I understand, chokeholds are illegal and SHOULD be banned.

    5. “Police are operating under far tighter use-of-force rules than ever in history and yet we have this problem.”

      And yet they are still looser than the rules the US military operates under in war zones.

    6. “And surely libertarians don’t believe that a new regulation will fix the problem, right?”

      Libertarians would fully support more more limits on government power.

      1. This. Reducing regulations on the people generally involves increasing regulations on the government. And the inverse as well.

  3. eliminating qualified immunity

    I’m no lawyer, but someone came in here a few days ago and dispelled the myth of qualified immunity, given that it’s reported as a magical shield that makes the officer immune from the consequences of his actions.

    Officers should be able to be fired immediately, just like the rest of us in the private sector. For most officers, the prospect of losing their jobs and their pensions is going to be a more existential threat than the remote possibility they’ll be prosecuted for killing this one dude, but not another under similar circumstances.

    1. QI only pertains to civil suits.

      1. This is accurate. The bigger stumbling is the strength of the police union to restrict department’s ability to fire or discipline members of the police force.

        1. I think beyond even the union problem there is the psychological problem of their concept of fraternity. It’s a brotherhood that protects one another and it seems like this also creeps into prosecutor’s offices. There’s nothing codified about this to fight. There’s an unspoken rule that certain things are hush hush. The incentives to snitch for things that should be brought in to daylight is almost non-existent, but the consequences for it are severe and pervasive. I can’t imagine there’s any actual way to solve that.

          1. Rewards. Have lavish rewards for snitching and collecting evidence of wrongdoing, payable to cops or private citizens.

      2. I would say de facto QI applies only to civil suits. De rigueur, Drew Peterson gets to beat his way through 3 wives, potentially murder his way through 2, definitely murder his way through one wife and only have his (state) Constitutionally-guaranteed pension revoked after his second conviction for trying to put a hit on the lead prosecutor in his murder trial.

  4. How about end drug prohibition which causes the violence and oppressive policing?

    1. And ending Civil Asset Forfeiture, which encourages police to look for opportunities to steal shit, which only makes people pissed off at cops.

    2. That would definitely reduce the number of interactions between police and the general public– giving the police fewer excuses to search and detain people who are otherwise acting peacefully. But even with a full rollback of drug prohibition, are you still comfortable knowing that there’s a bunch of dudes with guns out there who can kneel on your neck until you’re dead? Remember, sans drug prohibition, there are plenty of other things that remain illegal and if the cops are trained to be violent, then that problem doesn’t go away, it just has fewer excuses to happen.

      1. I thought Floyd was killed over trying to pass a counterfeit $20, not over drugs.

    3. Yeah, simply make more things legal. Legalizing immigration, drugs, and sex work would be a good start. Reduce the overall law enforcement surface area.

      1. If it’s legal it has to be subject to regulation, taxes, licenses, etc and those still need law enforcment, due to the fact onerus regulation creates black markets just as prohibition does.

    4. Good start

  5. The problem with cities claiming to have already implemented parts of Campaign Zero’s “8 Can’t Wait” initiative is the complete lack of defined consequences. I’m not looking to railroad anything but, without teeth, signing on to these feelgood proposals is an empty appearance of appeasement.

    Or else, what? is a question that has to have a very specific answer for everything listed here.

  6. If the police officer doesn’t have a body cam on during an arrest, no criminal charges will be brought. I think that may be a good start for local agencies to start adopting.

    Obviously this doesn’t police the activity outside of situations resulting in arrest. So the pretextual stops and harassment would still occur. Hmm.

    How about, if you don’t keep your body cam on, you are fired. No questions asked.

    1. Still not a perfect solution. Bodycams are not a panacea. What if it malfunctions during an officer’s shift and he’s not aware of it until hours later? Okay, then he’s off the hook, but then how do you prevent officers intentionally glitching out their cameras?

      And what if there’s an incident like Justine Diamond? We can sort out the myriad problems with that shooting without having to have camera footage showing what happened.

      1. What if it malfunctions during an officer’s shift and he’s not aware of it until hours later?

        “There’s an app for that.” Plus, “Officer, what is your Top Priority in the New Normal?”

      2. To clarify, I certainly didn’t say it’s a perfect solution, I said it was a “good start.”

        Plus, this sounds more like a technical issue than a policy problem. Build a back up. Build a back up to a back up. If not to fix the camera, make alerts that the camera is inoperable impossible to ignore.

        How many times a year does a parachute and a back up parachute fail at the same time, in the world?

        I didn’t know this was controversial, but I don’t want a cop out there in the world without a body cam on. Ever. Maybe there’s technological limitations that are literally impossible to fix, but without the desire to change, we need different accountability.

        1. Also, I’m obviously not talking about murder or white collar crimes or crimes that you know, are actually investigated. I’m talking about these interactions of beat cops and civilians.

      3. Here’s where a technical fix will really work. At the start of shift, lock each cop into a body-cam that *can’t be turned off or taken off*, and don’t let him out of it until his shift is over. It’s possible to make really robust cameras that won’t “glitch” easily.

    2. If the police officer doesn’t have a body cam on during an arrest, no criminal charges will be brought. I think that may be a good start for local agencies to start adopting.

      What needs to happen is juries and judges need to start expecting to see footage and considering good cases to be weak and weak cases to be baseless without it.

      However, the fact that cases that should’ve been open and shut without footage weren’t leaves me dubious.

      1. There was a big push for all police to wear bodycams years back but then as soon as they did the very same people who demanded it wanted them gone since it exonerated them nearly every time and debunked lots of political narratives related to police.

  7. There is a way to stop police brutality which is for the police department to let its officers know that if they are brutal during arrest they will be held accountable for their action and if proven that they were guilty they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. But that accountability needs to go up the line all the way to the top if and when it is found that the practice has been long held.

    1. The problem with that is that cops, prosecutors, and judges are all on TEAM GOVERNMENT. They look out for each other. It’s hardwired tribalism. They won’t hold each other accountable. That’s the whole point of power: you do what you want and nobody can do a damn thing about it.

      1. whereas the whole point of vodka is to make you run around posting as “pro pho”

        god damn all your names are fucking stupid

      2. You ever consider that your incredibly simplistic worldview causes you to miss any and all actual problems?

        The current Team Government is actually instructing police force of various jurisdictional power to terrorize American citizens. “Dominate” is the word used, I believe. Their opponents in Team Government are extremely interested in police reform. One side or the other gets to be in charge. How about the one not actively instructing cops to terrorize and murder law-abiding Americans?

  8. sarc’s solution: term limits for cops. Heck, make that for all government workers. A government of the people shouldn’t be staffed with career-minded “public servants.” George Orwell quit his job as a cop because he saw how it changed people from human beings into callous animals. And it’s still true. If there was a rotating door policy for police departments, then they might appreciate their power instead of flagrantly abusing it. Just a thought.

    1. “sarc’s solution”

      historically it’s been alcohol

      but really no one cares

    2. Why not term limits for private sector jobs if it’s such a good idea?

      1. Private sector jobs don’t include the power of arrest, or the power to detain against one’s will.

  9. At my job as head of a refinery lab a lab employee was seen by several people to grab the breast of a secretary. The union sent a representative to me to insist, as I agreed, that he be fired following a disciplinary hearing.
    As soon as he was notified that his employment was ending the same union filed a grievance against me for unlawful termination. The process extended his pay – from home – for an additional month. The union said they were legally required to represent any union member.
    If public employees are not allowed to join a union then almost all the bad actors will be removed before they might call upon qualified immunity. The cop management know who is going to make their jobs hard.

    1. If private sector unions protect bad-actors to the detriment of the company, then everyone is out of work.

      When public sector unions protect bad-actors to the detriment of… ha ha ha fuck you we’re raising taxes ha ha ha!

    2. Right, blame the union instead of the boss. We’ve seen this done before.

  10. This is all pretty weak tea. Until cops are held personally liable for their actions, nothing will change. Yes, end QI and civil asset forfieture (duh), but DA’s, judges, and “the system” have to be willing to prosecute brutal (notice I didn’t say bad) cops to the fullest extent of the law as it would be applied to a non-cop. Cops breaking the law on video and nothing else happens? That has to change and it’s not so easy as passing new laws. The culture in “the system” has to change.

  11. How about more community policing? Take away their radar guns and speed traps and get them involved with the areas they “serve and protect”. Most interactions with police are adversarial. They’re either handing you a ticket for a minor infraction or viewing you as suspicious because they’re reacting to a complaint. Police would be less likely to put Eric Garner or George Floyd in a chokehold if they’d said hello to them previously.

    1. There is not enough crime to justify most police departments. Their major function is to collect revenue through tickets and fines. They’re just tax collectors like the Sheriff of Nottingham. Only the costumes have changed.

      1. ^ Absolutely correct.

      2. I just disagree with you here, sarcasmic. Cops are needed, whether people like them or not. There is a need for a serious overhaul and reform of, and change in the cop culture in our society.

        1. Cops are needed, whether people like them or not.

          citation needed

    2. How about more community policing?

      Stupid buzzwords.

      1. Moreover, buzzwords that directly led to bad endings. Police ‘community policing’ is what led to these confrontations in the first place.

        Overzealous lawmaking is what led directly to the problem. If ‘X’ wasn’t illegal, they wouldn’t be busting heads over ‘X’.

        Overzealous lawmaking is also the thing that makes jobs scarce, which will keep you poor on top of everything else. Selling cigarettes without a license, for example, is illegal economic activity and led to at least one person being killed by police.

        Ask people to make it legal to do that specific thing, though, and Karen starts to get involved ‘for the children’.

    3. This I agree with 100%. One of the most realistic solutions I could think of. People’s views of police are default adversarial the moment they get their first speeding or parking ticket. Police need to practice more PR and go out into their communities. If there’s a block party or a community service project or any excuse really to send a couple officers to interface with the people they are supposed to serve they should do it. They should eliminate ticketing quotas and treat non-violent/victimless/minor infractions as a teachable moment, not a revenue collection opportunity.

    4. One problem is that Floyd and that cop already had met previously. They worked overlapping shifts as security guards for a strip-joint. We don’t know what went on between them there.

  12. None of that will help. There is no reforming the culture of the biggest gang. The only solution is to minimize the interactions with the citizens. The best way to do this to reduce the number of laws.

    Secondly, treat armed protection like the fire department. If you need men with guns to stop a violent act, call them and they will come. No more sending armed aggressive thrugs driving around your city looking for reasons to instigate force against the citizens for minor infractions.

    1. “No more sending armed aggressive thrugs driving around your city looking for reasons to instigate force against the citizens for minor infractions.”

      But governments depend on that revenue!

    2. Secondly, treat armed protection like the fire department. If you need men with guns to stop a violent act, call them and they will come. No more sending armed aggressive thrugs driving around your city

      As a libertarian, I view police as fulfilling the same function as private security. I certainly want private security guards to carry guns, and I do want them driving around the property keeping me safe. I don’t see why police shouldn’t do both of those things as well.

      1. I do not want them being “proactive”, only responsive to complaints, unless there is blatant suspicious activity (say walking along a line of cars and looking in the driver’s compartment). There needs to be less laws. Repeal all laws in which there is no clear victim.

  13. Force restrictions will have very little effect.

    No QI
    + no unions
    + fully transparent records
    = complete public accountability

  14. 6) In any case where there should be video evidence and somehow there isn’t, the legal presumption should be that any police testimony is hogwash. ‘Forget’ to turn on your body am before serving a no-knock warrant? You just blew your case completely.

    7) Police and Prosecutors who lie in court, suppress evidence, or solicit perjury, should be tried for false imprisonment or (in Capital cases) conspiracy to commit murder.

    1. ^ Love it.

      1. I love it too. Now enact it. You’d need a police department that strictly goes after the police and prosecutors (clearly IA offices aren’t cutting it.) Besides the feasibility issues of actually adding such a bureaucracy, what’s to stop the more corrupt people to simply move to police police, corrupt that and still avoid being held to account?

        The problem as I see it is that as long as people in power know each other, work together and can turn a blind eye to everything from minor infractions to major felonies as long as there’s an unspoken agreement that they won’t go after each other, nothing can really change. This doesn’t just apply to government, it’s in all social interactions from kids figuring out it’s in their best interest not to tattle on one another to restaurant employees all taking free food when the manager is in the back. It’s human nature.

        You can come up with all the rules you want, some people will help each other break them for their own benefits if there’s no one to police them. Others will choose just to shut their mouths and keep their heads down. Once you reach the top of the policing chain, what then? This problem is one of the reasons I became a libertarian. I used to be a leftist and I could think of rules that would improve society all day long. Once you come to the realization that all the rules must be enforced and you see the reality of how they’re enforced (and not enforced upon themselves) you realize that the best way to get a functioning, less corrupt world is is to be distrustful of power, don’t ever give it away and limit it’s potential for harm and corruption by decentralizing it and demanding transparency at every turn. Teaching personal accountability to our children as young as possible may help turn this around, but it takes near universal participation and takes at least a generation to see the fruits of it.

        1. How much of a premium do you pay to not live near the George Floyds of the world?

          1. George Floyd was trying to pass a counterfeit $20. I’d rather lose $20 than be violated or killed by the police. If Floyd was an armed robber or more major thief, maybe I’d feel differently. There’s no need to use that kind of force for such a petty offence. The Federal Reserve does a lot worse legally.

  15. “or to apprehend a fleeing person for a felony that threatened or resulted in death or serious bodily injury,”

    So rioters are fair game as soon as the first brick flies?

  16. Out of curiosity, what’s the penalty for knowingly passing a counterfeit $20?

    1. Store owners report counterfeit bills because they are required to by law.

      Floyd may not have been a suspect initially. We don’t know everything that happened between his first contact with police and when he was on the ground.

  17. Even though Floyd was not murdered with a weapon, police possession of and constant carry of weapons shapes both officer attitudes and agencies for the worse. Weapons should only be available to a select few police in a select few circumstances and easily available public records of their deployment should be kept.

    Ordinary beat cops were once minimally armed here in America and are still minimally armed in a number of other places. We’ve out of fear and abdication of responsibility surrendered hard earned wisdom about state power.

    “Ironically, the only gun control in 19th century England was the policy forbidding police to have arms while on duty.”
    ~ Don B. Kates, Jr.

    “You made your rulers mighty, gave them guards, So now you groan ‘neath slavery’s heavy rod.”
    ~ Solon

    1. Weapons should only be available to a select few police in a select few circumstances and easily available public records of their deployment should be kept.

      And who are you to impose this on others? If local communities want to adopt that as a policy, they certainly can. I can tell you for certain that my town wouldn’t vote for it. And I suspect you won’t be able to find a black neighborhood that would vote for such a policy either.

      1. Expressing an opinion and noting that that opinion comports with some 26 centuries of, only recently lost, wisdom is hardly “imposing” that opinion.

      2. “And I suspect you won’t be able to find a black neighborhood that would vote for such a policy either.”

        Despite the opinions of some racists both black and white trying to pretend that it is not so, the issue of police abuse is an order of magnitude bigger than race. Many Americans of other races suffer it. You need look no farther than the case, now, on Reason of the 75 year old white man. Where he was severely injured by two cops, supervisors tried to cover it up, and now that it has come out that whole unit of 57 has resigned and thetwo are under investigation by multiple agencies. It has, even, reached beyond Americans; with an Australian news crew savagely beaten to make way for Trump’s St. John’s, I’m not hiding in my bunker, stunt. Another Australian woman was recently killed by police in very fishy circumstances. Add in the abuses of our neighbors by border agents; and polices abuse hits Americans of every color, our neighbors, and our closest “cousins” and allies.

        I, nor anyone else, need not ask some black organization for permission to oppose this systemic problem of police abuse.

  18. From tighter use-of-force rules to eliminating qualified immunity, here are some reforms that could make a real difference.

    I’m all for cities tightening use of force rules and eliminating qualified immunities.

    But what “real difference” is it going to make? Every year, maybe a handful of African Americans dies under circumstances like Floyd’s (and maybe a dozen others). How much are you going to reduce that? By 1 or 2 deaths if at all? How would you even know?

    And if you’re worrying about racial disparities, why not address the most glaring one first, namely the massive disparities in crime rates and interracial crime?

    1. Those who don’t think worse outcomes for people with brown skin have to do with the brown skin itself would suggest that cop reform is one part of a program to make society more equitable for said brown people, thus removing some of the institutional reasons they have worse outcomes.

      It’s about cause and effect. One theory is that brown people commit more crimes because their brown skin makes them do it. The other is that brown people have been victimized by society (including cops) for centuries because of their brown skin, so they basically live in an alternate, poorer society where of course crime and violence are more prevalent.

      The latter theory has the virtue of not being racist and also requires relatively straightforward social and government reforms. The former I suppose would require a mass welfare program of some sort, since we don’t blame people for being born genetically disabled.

      1. Both your theories preclude the fact that even black people have free will, the choice, agency to act as they wish.

        The real issue is how to help black people make better choices.

        1. That’s theory 1.

          1. The one you didn’t state.

      2. I totally agree with the first sentence of your post, Tony.

        As far as the second sentence, however, I disagree with the theory that black or brown people commit more crimes because their skin color makes them do it. I do agree, however with the theory that black and browned skinned people have been victimized by society including cops, due to skin color, and thus live in alternate and poorer environments where crime and violence are more prevalent.

        As for the last paragraph in your post, while straightforward social and government reforms are required, people don’t end up committing crimes due to genetic problems.

  19. I see you’ve settled on the sensible option of police reform after suggesting the 2nd amendment means we should shoot at cops. Of course the commenters think we should suck cop dick instead, so you might put in a word for aiming.

  20. 6 – end the drug war – many of these deadly encounters are for breaking laws we shouldn’t have in the first place.
    7 – we need to seriously consider limiting the enforceable verbal commands that are legitimate. a lot of people have been beaten and killed for not following commands that had nothing to do with imminent threats.

  21. Floyd was a career criminal. And a great role model for young black people. Hence the scholarship in his name..

    “Floyd had landed five years behind bars in 2009 for an assault and robbery two years earlier, and before that, had been convicted of charges ranging from theft with a firearm to drugs, the Daily Mail reported.”

    Civil disobedience isn’t a game with rules that allow crime, if you’re black or a self proclaimed demonstrator, with the police impotently doing nothing to restore justice.

    If that’s the society you want, get used to barricades, boarded windows and curfews.

    Police in Minneapolis have used the knee to neck method many times before and because the perpetrators lived, that technique was considered successful.

    Unthinking cops need a policy of quickly subduing and immediate total restraint with non lethal devices.

    1. Trump’s a career criminal. He raped children.

      1. Yeah, hopefully Floyd is in hell.

    2. Non-lethal means of subdual have a funny tendency to be fully-lethal to a subset of people they’re going to use it on.

      1. Handcuffs?

        1. You throw handcuffs at people to subdue them? Weird.

    3. If what happened to George Floyd is any indication, the knee on the neck technique can be extremely dangerous-and deadly. That kind of technique can really maim or kill people who are the victims of it.

      1. Subduing a career criminal against his will can be very dangerous for police.

        If someone’s gotta die, I want it to be the waste of skin criminal.

        That being said police management should learn from this to create a policy of quickly cuffing and shackling everyone who is detained. That would be an appropriate response in the memory of Floyd.

  22. The only important way you listed is the last one, which if repealed would make the other 4 superfluous.

  23. A lot more than this is needed because a major reason that cops are even called into these situations is because people lie through their teeth on their 911 calls. A recent incident here in Denver is not atypical –

    Based on a 911 call from a grocery store manager – Can you guys just do a quick drive-by here? I’m told there’s a black guy in a white hoodie sitting in a Cadillac by himself in the parking lot, and he has a gun. Assuming the store manager simply relayed what they were told by a customer, every single fact but two was a lie. Yes the car owner was black and it was a Cadillac. No he was not in a white hoodie. No he was not actually even in the car at that point since he had gone back inside the store to get a couple things he had forgotten. His three kids – also black – age 14, 7, 2 – were in the car. No no one had a gun.

    IOW some white middle-aged Karen deliberately lied about a situation – by making it about race – pulling cops into a situation where they were gonna have itchy-fingers. No one was hurt – except one of the kids’ pride who peed her pants when the cops pulled their guns on her and yelled. But this is absolutely a situation where that Karen should be charged and sent to prison. Instead, that person remains anonymous and now even more empowered – and it is the cops who have to justify their actions.

    1. You are aware that filling a false police report is indeed a crime, right?

      So feel free to explain why they aren’t arresting everyone involved in that situation except, obviously, the right-acting police that were just rationally responding to a reported incident.


      On a more serious note, how did the ‘Karen’ in that situation make it about race? Because she reported the skin color of the person she thought was about to commit a crime? Would it be better if she said ‘a person of unknown color or gender is outside with an object that I think is a firearm’? Seems like a non-useful description, but one that the fringe left would like her to use.

      Personally, I prefer the police not arrest people for making false reports unless they can prove it was made with malice. Was the woman reporting behavior she legitimately found distressing, or was she trying to get a black man in trouble with the law?

      I had no idea that woke Denver was so racist…you should move to Texas where there are more than double the amount of black people. Folks are used to seeing them every day.

      1. Denver had the second highest rate of deaths by law enforcement in the country during the 1999-2012 timeframe. City of Baltimore was higher but if you look at those other places (Pinal/Phoenixburb AZ, Fresno CA, Bernalillo/Albuquerque NM, Riverside CA, San Bernardino CA, Lane/Eugene OR, Pierce/Tacoma WA, Tulsa OK) it ain’t the Detroits New Orleans Philly Chicago etc. Rather it is places with a shit ton of Karens who make bogus 911 calls to report strange scary looking black/beaner/not-like-me man walking in my eyesight. I’m scared. He’s probably armed. Save me Sheriff.

        And enough white people to make sure there is no police reform (whether it’s real or just for show).

        And of course they never get arrested for that unless they are stupid enough to brag about it on NextDoor outside their circle of ‘strange black man in eyesight’ group. And honestly they are so entitled they probably don’t even show obvious malice. I’m sure some of their best friends at work have friends who are black.

        1. Import leftists, get Karens

  24. After reading some of the pious BS on this thread, I wonder if any of you has asked a black inner-city resident {a decent family man or woman] how they want the thugs on their block “handled.” You may be surprised.

  25. I have all five right here:

    Once a perp is in control and handcuffed, if you are concerned for their safety or the safety of other officers or if they are a flight risk (which how well can you run with your hands pinned behind your back).

    1) zip-tie their ankles together
    2) zip-tie their ankles together
    3) zip-tie their ankles together
    4) zip-tie their ankles together
    5) if someone expresses a problem with breathing then take them seriously, especially if there are three other officers right f**king there with you.

  26. Another idea: go back to 2 cops in a car. Having a relationship with a partner who can say “get off him, I’ll take over” when the other guy has lost control might prevent a lot of this. Better yet, train partners to moderate each other’s behavior.

    In the Floyd stuation it seems like none of the other 3 cops had the courage to tell the killer to get off. A partner might have had that courage and perspective.

    1. Good points, Union Thug! Well said! Bravo!

    2. My understanding was perimeter guy had 3 days on force, guy on legs had maybe a year. They aren’t going to question veteran officers even if they wanted to. Not the right thing, but…

  27. Qualified Immunity was created by the Supreme Court to frustrate the enforcement of the 1868 Civil Rights. It was a more subtle version of Plessy v. Ferguson. It applies to all public officials and that is why its repeal is never presented by politicians. If you repealed Qualified Immunity, the four prior ways would take care of themselves. The really big issues besides Qualified Immunity is training and physical fitness. Poor training and a lack of physical fitness caused the Eric Garner death. In comparison, the Military Police have very few issues of using excessive force in detaining suspect because of continual training and physical fitness requirements. And remember, they are dealing with people highly trained to defend themselves and who are physically fit. Repeal of QI is broadly supported by civil libertarians from the Cato Institute to the NAACP.

    1. ^This. Physical fitness and training. The military constantly trains. Usually, they got nothing else to do. PT every (workday) morning, first thing.

  28. Police “brutality” infinitesimal. Facts: TUCKER CARLSON AND WASHINGTON POST SHOOTING STATISTICS

  29. Stop paying for them with stolen (tax) dollars.

    1. Accepting government pay and benefits is accepting stolen property – a felony in almost every jurisdiction.

      “If taxation without consent is not robbery, then any band of robbers have only to declare themselves a government, and all their robberies are legalized.” ~ Lysander Spooner

      ^ Essentially the entire premise for government.^

    2. Ok but then way more blacks are going to get shot since people will have to fend for themselves.

  30. End the drug war.
    End the drug war.
    End the drug war.

  31. What’s so hard about obeying the law? Don’t deal dope, don’t get drunk, avoid hanging out with rough characters, don’t be on the street at 3:00 AM

    None of the experts will dare offer up such insane ideas. Like commiting crime is a given; the police need modify their approach to accomodate

    1. Legalize drugs. People have a right to be out any time they want. It’s a free country. Bring rogue cops under control.

  32. Surprised that ending the war on users of the ‘wrong’ drugs isn’t on the list. ‘Hard’ drugs aren’t different enough from killer alcohol to justify the 180 degree difference in the way users are treated. I don’t think anything really needs to be said about the piece of garbage war on cannabis users, trashed for using a FAR safer substance than killer alcohol. This alcohol free pass ‘war on drugs’ has poisoned police-community relations for generations now, especially with minority communities, with obviously predictable catastrophic consequences.

  33. My suggestion is for African Americans to stop committing, on a per person basis, about three times as many violent crimes including murder as other Americans. That would be a good start. Then perhaps they wouldn’t account for being about 1/3 of all murder victims even though they represent only 1/7th of all people in the USA. The data on crime I got from “Crime data explorer” from the FBI

    1. Yes but the excuse here is going to be “they’re poor” even though poor whites in the same socioeconomic class, even the poorest income bracket tend to commit even fewer crimes in most categories than the blacks in the highest income bracket. Or you’ll get some kind of platitude about the legacy of slavery even though again, if you go look at everywhere else blacks are on the planet the same pattern holds even though you can’t blame slavery.

      This whole article is basically “just shoot the gun out of their hands lol” the article.

  34. Not one Libertarian has found the real answer and that is for the police to get back to walking the streets-PREVENTING crime instead of coming after it.

    1. Having cops who either walk the beat, and thereby give them more of an opportunity to get to really know the people in the neighborhoods that they patrol would go a long way towards reducing the incidents of police brutality in poorer neighborhoods, generally, regardless of ethnicity of color, and thereby preventing, or at least minimizing crime.

      1. The 4 cops that were shot in St. Louis were apparently part of the community service/liaison division. Looks like someone got the wrong guys. You don’t hear much about that though.
        It is always easier to relate to someone you know rather than a faceless nameless easily objectified entity.

  35. You can do it with one change – stop hiring assholes with small-dick syndrome and training them that the public at large is their enemy, and instead hire people with at least a lick of common sense. If you kneel on someone’s neck for 8 minutes you never should have been a cop. And if there are protests about police violence the best response is not to demonstrate more unwarranted violence. (While ignoring the looters.)

    Of course, all the boot-lickers here and elsewhere operate from a false premise, that the cops are here to serve and protect us when they are strictly in the service of the politicians, bureaucrats, and moneyed interests. They protect the ruling class and operate as an extra-tax revenue source through writing summons for bullshit, while solving nearly no real crime.

    But I am probably too harsh – I should let the 90% of bad ones ruin it for the rest.

    I referee amateur ice hockey games, and the biggest assholes I deal with in the sport are the police teams – almost every one of them jerks of the first order.

    1. They are trained to deal with the lowest common denominator which is inner-city ghetto black career criminals, like Floyd. The only thing you’re right about here is that they serve the people in power which is why they were ordered to stand down and let the rioting and looting take place. If the people in power didn’t want that, there would have been a pile of corpses of both ghetto blacks and bourgeoisie political violence tourists who typically count on mommy and daddy and their trust fund to bail them out in Minneapolis and other cities.

  36. You forgot number 6. Don’t try to pass a fake twenty!

  37. The question: How does a society get its individual sovereignty back when it has forfeited it to authorities? NOT by begging the authorities to “reform”, relinquish their power. Servants begging masters for more freedom (less harsh slavery) NEVER works.
    Therefore, freedom begins with the individuals, at the grass level, when they take responsibility for themselves. For example, if protestors policed the minority looters, it would have nipped that in the bud. Cops running away like cowards encouraged looting/riots.

  38. Sorry – cops are almost to a man jerks who like fucking with people. That’s why they became a cop because they were either bullies in school or got bullied in school. And this new more violent militarized version is what the ruling and moneyed class want, as their cronyistic oligarchy sucks everyone dry.

    Looters stealing TVs triggers people, but they are OK with the politicians in both parties giving $5,000,000,000,000 to the corporate and moneyed class while passing out $1,200 in STFU money to the masses.

    Of course, the looters are assholes, but they are gnats compared to these sociopaths running the show – we are officially a Banana Republic – this is what goes on in both parties to the benefit of the moneyed class – and they are crushing the regular guy. And the cops will be there to protect them – not you or me.

  39. Any suggestions on how to end black on black killings? The number of blacks “murdered” by police, of any race, pales in comparison to black killings.

    And, if black live truly matter, why are their only riots after the rare police brutality? I am going with BLM cares little for the black murder rate, they only care about themselves and radical change to make the world a “better place to live”.

    1. What you’re saying about BLM not caring about the crime in the black communities is absolutely untrue, Silence Dogoode. The fact is that they do care, and they do often bring up the problems–on the radio, to the newspapers, on TV, at social gatherings, in church, and in community meetings.

  40. Well, if we are going to make it easier to fire cops, are we going to make it easier to fire stupid teachers? Are we going to reform their pensions too? Teachers Union is more powerful than the cops union. Who is going to take THEM on????

    1. Nobody, because they both operate to keep the moneyed class in power, one by making sure everyone is incapable of independent, rational thought, and the other by stepping on their throats if they do begin to question the brutally degrading corporate and political culture that is the USA.

      Things are the way they are because those in power WANT them that way. All this “Red vs. Blue” stuff is legerdemain bullshit to keep the ignorant masses thinking they have a voice.

      1. While I don’t disagree with you, you cannot ignore the fact that the Democrat Political Party is WAY worse than the Republicans in terms of corporate control over our lives.

        It is not always a matter of “both sides are bad, so we must throw away both sides.” We don’t have that choice.

        We have to do what we can and try to pick the side that will destroy and control us the least. There is no argument on this.

        I was born and raised in Detroit. I saw directly what Democrats do. Everything they touch turns into ****.

        Sanjosemike (no longer in CA)

        1. The dire situation in black communities, the lack of opportunities available to them, and the policies that keep things that way….Democrat run cities. Almost universally.

  41. While the suggestions in this article are reasonable and make sense, I cannot understand how police unions always get off scot free when it comes to over-aggressive police violence.

    Nobody is picketing the unions who did not allow bad police to be fired. It is always blaming the Republicans, who have nothing to do with police unions.

    I’m glad they were discussed in this article. Democrats ALWAYS get a free ride. Always. They are literally “above the law.”

    Sanjosemike (no longer in CA)

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  42. 1. Decriminalize drugs
    2. Refer to 1.

  43. Did I mention decriminalizing drugs?

  44. I agree with your list.

    On Qualified immunity – that made-up standard is a problem. But we do need to recognize that if we are going to put a million cops on the street, there are going to be mistakes. Some of those mistakes are going to be lethal. Somewhere in the system we need room for honest mistakes. Without that leeway, eventually the police will rebuild some form of immunity. It is rare to have a job where understandable screwups are crimes. (no, I’m not talking about screw ups like coercing sex from someone in custody, or stealing evidence, or fabricating evidence, or even lying on a warrant. But I am talking about things that would be really unpopular… like arresting the wrong guy, tasing someone who is having a diabetic episode (that you didn’t understand) or even shooting someone who steps out of the shadows when you are pursuing an armed and dangerous felon)

    Next, we need a real focus on tactics. The big innovation in the 90’s was the spread of SWAT and military style tactics. “Shoot the dog” became part of the training landscape, and suddenly we have to have puppycide tracking websites. At the same time, we see many videos of people getting killed when they didn’t have to, and the police don’t learn from these situations because they deem it a “good shoot”. I’m talking about cases where maybe a mentally ill guy is holding a screwdriver (real case). The police close in, ordering him to drop it. Yelling. Agitating. And moving close. When he makes a sudden move, they kill him. Justified… because he was at close range with a dangerous “weapon”.

    But better tactics would have been to keep their distance. He was no immediate threat to anyone. So I would not have designated it a “good shoot” because they created the dangerous situation unnecessarily. Bad tactics caused them to kill someone they were there to help.

    Tamir Rice is a famous case. A 12 year old kid playing with a gun gets shot and killed. But the pulling of the trigger wasn’t the moment that the fatal error was made. The tactical error that cost the kid his life was when the driver pulled his squad car to within a few feet of a potentially armed suspect. This put his partner too close to the subject to be able to wait and take a moment to assess the situation. This tactical error created that “snap second decision” that they are always talking about. And our current system does not address this sort of error. There is basically no culpability for that sort of error, even if it kills someone.

    The third area is this union-negotiated bit where cops don’t have to speak with investigators or give statements after an incident… not until they’ve consulted with lawyers and seen all the evidence.

    This is unacceptable. There is a problem with compelled testimony that might incriminate themselves, but there has to be a way to get their version of events before they are allowed to pour over the evidence for weeks with their lawyers, getting a defensible story together.

    Fourth… we need remedies that go beyond a reprimand and don’t extend to criminal sanction or ending careers. Not everyone has the right temperament to deal with the criminal element all day, every day. Some people have a short fuse. Those sorts should not be carrying a gun and a taser. But by the same token, we don’t need to automatically fire officers who lose their temper in the heat of the moment once or twice. We should be able to recognize the fit between the officer and the job. If they can’t be a beat cop, there are other jobs they could do without directly interacting with the public. This is not an “every time” remedy… but there are certain to be cases where a job and career can be saved.

    Why is this important? Because of that Thin Blue Line they always talk about. If every offense is going to result in loss of career, everyone is going to cover for each other. There’s just no way around that. Bad incentives lead to bad results.

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  45. 1. All police investigations should be done by a private sector/business like a P.I. firm – Perhaps a couple and prosecuted by public jury. (That’s how justice is suppose to work in the USA).

    2. When the the world forget about the word “intent”? I don’t think those cops intentionally meant to kill Floyd and as such shouldn’t be prosecuted like serial killers as the racist ( can’t see anything but the color of skin ) rioters would want. Would the mob really be so enraged if all the officers in the event were black??? Perhaps that’s another solution; black communities hire black cops until blacks can stop being so racist.

    3. One thing is for sure; This is entirely out of the scope of the federal government. They need to shut their pie hole’s about it. This is a local issue – not a national one.

  46. Specific to this Floyd case, where now it looks like Chauvin knew Floyd before the arrest, cops should have a duty to disclose conflicts of interest, when possible during a group arrest.

    Other professions have to disclose conflicts of interest all the time. Cops should feel obligated to do the same. If a cop is arresting someone they have a history with, they should state so for their body camera and, as much as possible, let the other cops do the bulk of the arrest work.

    If it’s two cops arresting a single suspect and a cop knows the suspect he should disclose that and let his partner take the lead on the arrest. He can step in if things escalate but he should hang back as much as possible.

  47. A 6th way to reduce police violence. Return to a policy from the 1970s called, “don’t respond….”

  48. So, cops kill a very few people, black or any other race, compared to the number of people killed at large.

    What is it with Reason, making it about SOME cops and ignoring anybody who has been murdered, if they weren’t murdered by a cop? I assure you, those victims are just as dead as if they’d been killed by a cop.

    Back in the day, the same people who are denigrating ALL cops and shrieking that they must be stopped, denigrated blacks and shrieked that they must be stopped. You know, the occasional black murdered a white guy, so the KKK felt justified in lynching all of them.

    Sound ridiculous? The KKK was the “enforcement” arm of the Democratic party. Today, progressives are the “enforcement” arm of the Democratic party. The Democratic party is unique in this country in that it has, since the time of slavery, been obsessed with making everyone conform to their perceived greater intellect and principles.

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