TEHRAN – Despite state-to-state outcry in the United States and beyond over the police’s daytime public execution of black American George Floyd in Minneapolis last year for an alleged fake $ 20 bill; one watch group says U.S. police still use similar levels of lethal force and still fail to face the consequences.
There are, in essence, three issues raised by the research that will ring alarm bells among human rights groups and international human rights organizations that have been very critical of the issue. American police brutality. First, the surprisingly high murder rate by the police, who literally act as judge, jury, and executioner, taking justice into their own hands and using deadly force. Second, the issue of racial disparity between black and white Americans killed by police. Third, there is the accountability aspect, or to be more precise the lack of justice for officers who murder their victims and then leave.
According to Mapping Police Violence, a nonprofit watchdog group, US officers have killed 1,646 people, an average of three people a day, since Floyd’s murder in May of last year. The data will not be favorable to activists and protesters who staged months of protests over Floyd’s murder demanding change, nor will experts believe the figure cited by the nonprofit group is conservative. Analysts firmly believe that the death toll from excessive use of force by police is much higher than what has been recorded or reflected in the media. For example, activists have long called for greater transparency in federal records about the number of people who die each year while in police custody.
This despite the fact that the monitoring group, Mapping Police Violence, uses a wide variety of sources to document its data. Nonetheless, the group states on its website that “Law enforcement agencies across the country have not even provided us with basic information about the lives they have taken. And while the death in custody law requires reporting this data, it is unclear whether law enforcement will actually comply with this warrant, and even if they do decide to report this information, it could elapse. several years before the data is fully collected, compiled and made public.
Since Floyd’s public execution, very little, if anything, has changed in the United States for the plight of black Americans. Worse for rights groups and the international community is that fatal police incidents against Americans due to the color of their skin have also remained the same as before Floyd’s murder. Despite the protests and outcry, Mapping Police Violence documented that black Americans are still two and a half to three times more likely than whites to be killed by a police officer. Experts say this racism problem will not be easy to resolve. Speaking to the US media, Philip Stinson, professor of criminal justice at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, believes that “many police officers are afraid of blacks.” Professor Green, who tracks criminal charges and police convictions, says that “until we can fix this problem, it is very difficult to make meaningful reforms.”
And to make matters worse, despite a case this year, where a jury in America ruled against a now former police officer for killing a black man, this represents a tiny minority of cases compared to the number of murders committed by the police. . While it is true that a court verdict against former cop Kimberly Potter found her guilty of two counts of manslaughter for the shooting death of Daunte Wright during a traffic stop. The high-profile case represents just an unusual move to send a police officer to jail. Potter was the first female police officer convicted of murder or manslaughter in a shooting on duty since 2005.
It is also only the second time this year that an officer has been convicted although of manslaughter, the other case was the conviction of Derek Chauvin for the murder of Floyd, but what about the responsibility of the Another 1,645 victims (an underestimated number by all accounts), who were murdered when they encountered the police in the past year and a half. Criminal charges against US police remain exceptionally rare. Activists say this highlights the power of police unions who often protect officers, while legal experts say if the problem of police accountability is the law, then American justice is a farce. We shouldn’t be surprised if images showing tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of protesters rallying against police brutality against black Americans appear on our TV screens again, or if other vigils are being held in solidarity. with families who have lost loved ones to police violence. As awareness has been raised and little action has been taken to effect change, the eyes of the world will increasingly be on the police murders and the reaction they have taken. trigger within the black American community and those who hold on to it.
The convictions of both Chauvin, the former Minneapolis officer who was captured on intensely painful spectator video pinning Floyd to the ground for more than nine minutes as he searched for air and begged for his life, and Potter struck some pundits as mere glimpses of a legal system in urgent need of major reform. Did Chauvin’s conviction keep the other officers in suspense? All the evidence points to the contrary.
Indeed, observers hesitate to read too much in a few isolated cases carried out under a state of media surveillance. Paul Butler, professor at Georgetown University Law Center and former prosecutor, says that “Criminal trials are not designed to be instruments of change, criminal trials are intended to bring individual offenders to justice. So while there have been high-profile prosecutions of police officers for killing black people, this in and of itself does not lead to the kind of systemic reform that could reduce police violence. Other experts have argued that accountability must also extend to prosecutors who gave officers carte blanche for a century until the recent outburst of public outrage.
The change is not likely to come soon.
While there has been an increase from the 16 officers indicted in 2020 and the highest number since some began compiling data in 2005, it remains low beside the roughly 1,100 victims killed by police each. year. There is still a lot of work to be done to educate and reform age-old attitudes of prejudice against black Americans.
Since Floyd’s public execution, very little, if anything, has changed in the United States for the plight of black Americans. A study that has just been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, refereed, suggests that this is one of the most important to date on racial prejudice in America. In addition to finding that black Americans are less likely to receive a response to emails they send, the researchers say “discrimination seems to be the norm rather than the exception.”
Critics would say it is safe to say that white Americans enjoy privilege in a country that calls itself the flagship of democracy and the beacon of human rights around the world.