Homeland Security: The Sworn Duty of Public Officials The United States has a unique position amongst the countries of the world;...
Sunday, March 27, 2016
An Overview of American Law Enforcement: Challenges
The two primary failings of the law enforcement community in America are the tolerance of an increasing regulatory state which pits the line officer against the average citizen, and the utter failure to hold public officials liable for both criminal acts and violations of oath of office. A third failure of agencies is the reluctance to confront a biased media when news outlets present a narrative that lacks crucial facts in incidents the police deal with. Silvergate discusses the continuing proliferation of "crimes" that have been invented by bureaucrats over the last 30 years, including "crimes" that are based upon regulations rather than on the Constitutional process of law-making. Policing these “ crimes” puts policemen into conflict with the average citizen, not with criminals. In recent riots, the governor of Missouri, Jay Nixon, and the Mayor of Baltimore, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, allowed rioters to attack citizens and police and to destroy property. Rawlings-Blake even stated she was giving rioters “space to destroy” (Chuck, 1015, para. 3). Both these politicians should have been arrested for failure to perform their duty. Finally, we have seen the media report on use of force incidents and selectively choose which facts are made public, and which aren't. Ferguson and McKinelly demonstrate that these portrayals consistently leave out the facts which justify the policeman's actions.
The major challenges for American law enforcement lay in the resolution of the issues discussed above. The system of checks and balances in the American governing system are sometimes vague about who has the responsibility for correcting issues such as nonfeasance and malfeasance; there are multiple studies done about police corruption and abuse of authority, but there is an almost nonexistent body of research regarding the punishment of elected officials that abuse the system. Finally, there is a problem with a lack of resources in many jurisdictions that can affect police efficiency, To meet these challenges, sworn officers and support personnel throughout the entire American security community must confront both the propaganda of the press and the malfeasance of the politicians with courage, public debate, and when the law has been violated, with handcuffs.
Other countries face the same types of issues. England has a similar problem in that public officials have abandoned their duty to protect the public. In Rotherham, Muslim men raped approximately 1,400 children over a period of 16 years, but the politicians and bureaucrats protected the offenders instead of the community “for reasons of political expediency and ideology, unwilling to confront the fact that the abusers were of Pakistani heritage” (Manzoor, 2014, para.5) . Indian police must deal with a culture of corruption in their political system. Canada suffers from scarcity of public resources.
Progression of organization has always been a matter of stops and starts. This is due to competing factors. Growth theory suggests that as organizations grow, they focus more on protecting the organization than on achieving the mission. Once the rot in an organization degrades mission effectiveness to a certain point, there will be a demand for reform. In addition, organizations that are dedicated to the mission will seek out ways to improve efficiency. Finally, the politics model suggests that political interests can advance or hinder the evolution and efficiency of policy operations.
Law enforcement may have evolved for the better had criminal justice professionals been more perceptive of the “poverty pitfall” of Chicago School sociologists and taken steps to prevent it's influence from taking hold in law enforcement policies, “Poverty Pitfall” is the term that I use to describe the fallacy of the concept that poverty causes crime. This is a prima facie fallacy. There is crime in communist countries where everyone is “equal”; rich people commit crime; middle class people commit crime. The concept fails the test of logic. Policing in this country could have been much worse had the law enforcement community not evolved from the Political Model ( which is different than the term used previously) to the Professional Model.
The overall success this country has had in professional policing is often hidden behind the front page stories of police acting “badly”; these stories typically omit the facts that would counter the headline.
Chuck, E. (2015, April 28). Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake under fire for 'space' to destroy comment. NBC News. Retrieved June 17, 2015 from http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/baltimore-unrest/mayor-stephanie-rawlings- blake-under-fire-giving-space-destroy-baltimore-n349656
Manzoor, S. (2014, September 15). The England that is forever Pakistan: Multiculturalism and rape in Rotherham. The New York Times. Retrieved June 17, 2015 from http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/16/opinion/multiculturalism-and-rape-in- rotherham.html
Silverglate, H. (2013). Three Felonies A Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent. Encounter Books.