We have the right to peaceful assembly, we have the right to protest police brutality, we have the right to express our opinions and we have the right to show solidarity with each other. The police response as of late has been an egregious misuse of force against the very people they are charged to serve and protect. If the outfitting of local police with military gear is the Department of Defense’s interpretation of what should be done with excess military gear, then they need to rethink their recycling program because militarizing our local police is neither constructive, proactive or a thoughtful use of funds and equipment. Our law enforcement needs more sensitivity training and lessons about civic duty and responsibility as well as a handbook on the right to protest. When the police overreacts that is when the public gets angry and out of control. The police should respect the need to grieve and the need to be heard. Anger is often defused when respect is shown and their words and emotions given an outlet. I believe that future police candidates should be given courses in psychology and sociology as well as anger management and empathy classes. First and foremost I strongly believe that all local police should be divested of the military hardware; we do not live in war zones, we do not want to and it would force police to rely on better techniques over the easy go to method of excessive force. What were they thinking in Ferguson, Missouri rolling out with an anti-mine vehicle, a little over the top response to civilian protest I would say, wouldn’t you?
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