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POLICE KILLINGS ARISE FROM A RACIST CULTURE

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African Americans are more than twice as likely than whites to be killed by the police. Discussions about how to change that troubling statistic usually revolve around better recruitment and training of law-enforcement officers.

While such programs are surely valuable, new research suggests the fundamental problem lies beyond such fixes: It indicates that, if there is a culture of racism within a police department, it likely reflects the shared prejudices of the community it serves.

A research team led by Ryerson University psychologist Eric Hehman has discovered a link between the unconscious racial biases of white residents and the disproportionate use of lethal force against blacks by the police. Areas with greater levels of prejudice had higher rates of such tragic incidents.

“The context in which police officers work is significantly associated with disproportionate use of lethal force,” the researchers write in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.

THE ATTITUDES OF THE COMMUNITIES THE POLICE OFFICERS WORK IN HAVE A PROFOUND INFLUENCE ON THEIR ATTITUDES, BEHAVIOR, AND INSTINCTIVE REACTIONS.

Hehman and his colleagues utilized data from Project Implicit, a Harvard University-based website that invites people to take tests designed to measure their unconscious biases—racial and otherwise. More than four million people have done so since 2003.

The researchers focused on the results of tests taken by 1.8 million black and white Americans. Their location was broken down by “core-based statistical area,” which is defined as a region “of at least 10,000 people and adjacent areas.”

A subset of nearly 300,000 people also took the Weapons Stereotype Implicit Association Test, which measures the strength with which weapons are stereotypically associated with blacks relative to whites. This was used as a second measure of unconscious bias.

The rate of police killings was determined by a database in the Guardian newspaper. During the nine months studied (from January 1st to September 30th, 2015), the database recorded 875 such incidents. The researchers note that “black people represented 22.76 percent of all deaths, but constituted only 11.76 percent” of the population in the regions where they took place.

Finally, the researchers factored in a series of variables that could contribute to violence, including the area’s socioeconomic conditions, residential segregation, and the average education level of the population.

The results: “We find that the implicit racial biases of white residents predict disproportionate regional use of lethal force (against) blacks by police,” the researchers write. “This association is robust, reliably emerging across two conceptually distinct measures of racial bias.”

Several caveats are needed here. The people who took the Implicit Association Test did so voluntarily, and were therefore not necessarily representative of their city or county. Also, these results are correlational and do not prove that underlying bias directly caused the higher number of deaths.

Nevertheless, it seems self-evident that the attitudes of the communities the police officers work in—which are usually the same ones they live in, and often the ones they grew up in—would have a profound influence on their attitudes, behavior, and instinctive reactions.

Perhaps these killings are less of a policing problem, and more of a community problem.

https://psmag.com/social-justice/police-killings-arise-from-a-racist-culture

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

It is our duty as peace officers and members of Blacks in Law enforcement of America to continue the fight for freedom, justice, and equality for all citizens. We will be advocates of law enforcement professionals by establishing continuous training and support. As black law enforcement professionals, we pledge our time, honor, and talent for the uplifting of our communities. We are truly the leaders of the community, in and out of our blue uniform.

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Blacks in Law enforcement will continue to express “ Black” as it refers to people of color that are law enforcement professionals. The emphasis is on the common experience and determination of the people of African, Afro-Caribbean and Asian origin that opposes the effects of the policies and procedures in the history of our Justice System, that are based on racial bias and disproportionality.
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We are asking all Black Law Enforcement Organizations, civil rights organizations, grass root organizations to do the same.  PLEASE SIGN HERE  

 

 

“What does it say about the NFL, and about us, when at least a half-dozen men who have been accused of physical or sexual assault have been welcomed into the NFL over the past week, while Colin Kaepernick still has not?

While some NFL teams were busy drafting names from the police blotter last weekend, Kaepernick was standing outside a New York City parole office, handing out two boxes of his own custom-made suits to men who needed them for upcoming job interviews. He has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to charity. In March, it was reported by several news media outlets, including USA TODAY Sports, that Kaepernick will not protest the national anthem this coming season. And yet he’s still a free agent, so far unwanted by all 32 NFL teams.

 

The NFL is also broadcasting a message to Black people throughout the world that Black issues do not matter. It is uncommon that our children see athletes standing up for issues in their communities, especially for the many black men that have been unjustly killed by Law Enforcement.

As conscious Black People, we must send the same message to the NFL and their Sponsors that our dollars matter by boycotting the NFL and their products for basically punishing Kaepernick for his position on social justice issues.

We are asking all Black Law Enforcement Organizations, civil rights organizations, grass root organizations to do the same.  PLEASE SIGN HERE