Tuesday, May 24, 2022



Police Brutality Erupting from Racial Inequalities in America

Because of racial inequalities in America, consistent deaths caused by police use of lethal weapons continue to occur. Police brutality is defined as the excessive and often illegal use of force against United States civilians by police officers. There are five forms of police brutality. There is the use of excessive force, false arrest or wrongful imprisonment, wrongful search and seizure, racial discrimination and sexual harassment and abuse.

Studies show 83% of victims in law enforcement are reported to be armed. The studies have divided their number within demographics with  14.8% of black victims, 9.4% white and 5.8% are more likely to be unarmed.

Protesters marching against police brutality in Los Angeles after decision of Breonna Taylors case

There are more requests for police assistance, and reports of crime/neighborhood disturbance and involuntary street stops in areas of poverty. There are differences in the number of times a person of a specific identity interacts with law enforcement because of where they grow up and are exposed to. According to data from the U.S. Department of Justice, it has been found that Black and Hispanic drivers were more likely than  White drivers to be pulled over, searched and ticketed during a traffic stop.

A mural of Trayvon Martin is seen on the side of a building in the Sandtown neighborhood where Freddie Gray was arrested on April 30, 2015 in Baltimore.

Many people of color, specifically Black people have died because of the racial injustice that is being displayed at the hand of police officers. The names of people who have been killed by police officers are  George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Philando Castile, Breonna Taylor, Alton Sterling, EJ Bradford and Willie McCoy. Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner said in an interview, “They murdered him and if there was going to be justice, it would have been at the point when he said, ‘I can’t breathe.’”

Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner, at a protest in 2015.

“Research is indicating that a race bias exists  in the U.S and people have culturally implicit bias.” The American Journal of Preventive Medicine states, “Research on implicit race bias in the U.S. consistently demonstrates a tendency to associate more-favorable concepts with whites and less-favorable concepts with blacks across racial/ethnic groups, although these biases are less common among blacks.”

Within police departments in the U.S., there is not a wide area of diversity when it comes to race and ethnicity.  The margin of diversity represents that 65.5% of police officers are White and 12.8% are Black. The lack of representation in law enforcement plays a factor in implicit bias when being exposed to different environments.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics is a national level data set. The issue with this source of information begins with two excessive police force datasets from 2016 that are outdated. Throughout the years 2016 to 2020 many events have occurred that have allowed people to voice their concerns.  There have been more than 1,000 unarmed people who have been killed by police between the years 2013 and 2019. There is a higher percentage of Black people there being 17% who have died by police harm.

Credit: Getty Images

There is a broken system implemented within law enforcement that needs to be fixed to be fair for all people!