The boys in blue can make a boo-boo, too
Police officers are among the bravest and most selfless people in our nation. These men, these women, these people spend their lives working to keep our towns and homes safe. They work with dignity and integrity to protect each and every member of our communities, and many of them lose their lives in the process.
But they’re only human.
Sadly, in our current political climate, largely fueled by some of today’s most sensationalized politicians and big-headed presidential candidates, many Americans have returned to an “us vs. them” mentality. This separates us from the important issues at hand while instead tearing a great divide between two sides that may, at the end of the day, want the same thing.
To people who think in this harmful way, life is still black and white. There are red-blooded patriots or illegal immigrants. There are gun-toting lovers of freedom or brainwashed “sheep.” There are soldiers, veterans, and those who support our wars or there is communist slime and how dare they be pacifists. God forbid you question the decisions of a police officer in America today lest you be condemned as an ungrateful hater of all men and women in uniform.
Why is it that people refuse to accept that police make mistakes, too, or that, sadly, not everyone in uniform upholds their duties fairly or justly?
To deny that there is an epidemic in our country in which police officers disproportionately kill black citizens is lunacy. And these facts and infographics from the Mapping Police Violence movement will open up your eyes to it.
With data sourced from FatalEncounters.org, the U.S. Police Shootings Database, and KilledbyPolice.net, Mapping Police Violence is considered the most comprehensive accounting of police victims in the past several years, with approximately 90–98% of police killings since 2013 documented on the site.
These are the facts
6. The Victims
Black people are not the only victims of police, but they usually are. Between 2014 and 2016, black people were three times as likely to be killed by police, and 30% of these black victims were unarmed, compared to only 19% of white police victims.
5. No Relation to Crime Level
I’ve heard it used as an argument before and you probably have to, the idea that the cities and communities they police work are filled with violent criminals and cause police to stay on high alert at all times. As it turns out, that simply isn’t true. This chart shows that there is no correlation between the violent crime rate in a given city and the police killing rate.