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The Gray Area of Mike Brown

In: Social Issues

Submitted By cdmilton41
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The Gray Area of Mike Brown

Every day, African American males encounter a law enforcement officer; whether it is for formal contact or just a passing by moment. At the time of contact, each party has a decision to make based on experience, stereotypes and his or her own personal fear. These perceived thoughts are not always intentional, but is a direct reflection of the learned behavior that has become the muscle memory of their actions. At some point, the population must be willing to look beyond those things that limit or hinder the ability to see what is outside of the blinders that are being worn. With the case of Mike Brown, there were several documented opportunities that both parties could have benefited from, by having additional training and decision-making skills to prevent that fatal turn of events.
There is a dire need for sensitivity training within law enforcement as it relates to cultural traditions, habits or tendencies. However, there is also a need for a re-identification of social standards and those things deemed acceptable socially within the African American community. As a law enforcement officer, the oath is taken to protect and serve the occupants of the communities that they are assigned. With that being said, there should be an onus on each oath taking officer to know the persons and tendencies of those that occupy those communities. Assumingly, knowing the best method of communication seems beneficial. Also knowing the cause and effect of certain actions would be a valuable tool, but only if truly taken into consideration. If the first word from law enforcement is not aggressive, then perhaps it wouldn't be matched with aggression. Having attended and graduated from one of California's POST law enforcement academies, I can positively identify some things that could have been done differently. The problem is, those ideas come from a…...

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