Can You Hear Me?

London Hart

Dear Washington Post,

In the United States, police brutality has been an ongoing problem. In recent encounters with the police, victims are left terribly injured or dead. The most recent encounters was in Tulsa, Oklahoma when a forty-year-old African American man named Terrence Crutcher was shot and killed by police while waiting on the road by his broken-down car. After he was shot, the officer left him for two minutes before contacting the ambulance. This recent encounter once again set ablaze the police brutality fire.

The reason why deadly encounters with police continue to occur is due to assumptions and fears from both the police and the community. Police officers shoot first, then ask questions later because they fear their lives might be in danger. The community is afraid of the officer and tends not to make the best decisions in the situation. If the officers were taught to take more precautions when addressing a situation, there would be fewer killings and officers could gain back the community’s trust. If the community is given skills to handle situations with the police, the process would go much more smoothly.

A solution for both parties’ problems is to hold workshops to inform the public and the police. The workshops can teach people in the community how to act when you are approached by an officer. The police officer can get to know the members in their community and get training for how to handle problems more effectively. The workshops should have different members of the law, including lawyers and judges, to give their legal advice. If these steps are taken, there should be a decrease in instances of police brutality because people will have the skills they need to interact with the law.