Police brutality running rampant… or is it?


It seems like every time I browse the web, a new police brutality case has been released and is viciously dissected by the media. Citizens of cities all over America are now more frightened than ever of “crooked cops” that could make a drastic decision causing harm to them or even ending their life. But perhaps the biggest reason for this paranoia is because of the media portrayal of police officers.

Technology has been a vast source of information and has grown exponentially in the last few years. As technology advances, people’s attention span seem to get smaller and they demand information hastily and at their whim. Because of this, people are willing to expose any information to others and with the convenience of technology and the internet, things can be displayed in the blink of an eye. This is clear in the context of many online articles and news stories, including the countless police brutality articles that have been released over the past few years. While this isn’t necessarily a new phenomenon, the growth of the matter is clearly eminent due to one of the many drawbacks of social media. In fact, the frequency of police brutality hasn’t grown, but the frequency of it’s exposure has.

I do believe that police brutality is a disheartening problem that should come to an end, but I also believe that the frequency of the subject in recent news and media stories is ridiculous, not because the abundance of media irritates me, but because most of the reports are hardly newsworthy. When a headlining news story is about an officer threatening a civilian or offending them in some way, that really shouldn’t be considered police brutality. The job of a police officer is to keep people safe and to enforce laws, not necessarily to please every person they come across.

This is not an excuse for the current state of our police, but in other countries, corrupt officiating is something that is actually a serious problem. In countries like Afghanistan, Syria, and Ukraine, officers will regularly threaten people and create dangerous situations that frequently harm or even kill innocent civilians. They do this to display the “prowess” and power they believe they have obtained by becoming a government official.

Communities everywhere seem to take overwhelming joy in witnessing a “good” person or idea turn “bad”. Witnessing other people’s failures seems to make people feel more satisfied with themselves. What people should be realizing is that the great majority of police officers and state officials are doing a great job of keeping everyone safe, and they are doing it in a passionate and selfless manner, no matter how many Youtube videos or Instagram photos go viral.

People need to shift their gaze away from the gossip and negativity of corrupt police officers and realize that a few bad people don’t make every single officer a bad person.