How to end our Police problem

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by DestroyCurrency?, Oct 15, 2013.

  1. DestroyCurrency? Registered Member

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    This is just something I thought alot about, government wouldn't go for it because it would cost them too much of their power. Instead of having a full time, professional police force, I suggest that all male citizens 16-55 be required to serve a certain number of days on community security detail. That way everybody would have a stake in law enforcement, unpopular laws wouldn't be enforced, and the power of the government would be put in check.

    Of course, this would be easier to implement in my moneyless society, since people wouldn't be tied down to full time jobs and could do whatever jobs the wanted, more or less. I know nobody here will agree with me, but whatever, I wrote this anyway.
     
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  3. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    You are, of course, almost correct. Every citizen should be looking out for his community, not just the men. If you had a mixed protective presence, it could include police, paramedic and family service functions. So, if they were called to a bar-fight, peace enforcers would come with first aid capability; If called to a domestic violence situation, a child-care worker would come along to minimize the collateral damage; if called to a sexual assault, the team would include a rape counsellor... or whatever help was needed for the particular incident: address not only the perpetrator, but also the victim... or maybe even respond to a conflict with conciliation rather than deadly force.

    Authoritarian governing bodies don't like this idea, because it wouldn't provide effective crowd control (which is increasingly the main role of police forces, as governance shifts ever-rightward). Money-addicted governing bodies don't like it, because it's too simple, doesn't require shitloads of expensive ordnance and prison construction from their election funders, and might wake people up to their own competence. The unimaginative won't like it, because the mental boxes have been nailed firmly shut by decades of propaganda, the main burden of which is: Nothing Can Be Any Different (and besides we have cheap iphones).
     
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  5. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I imagine the thieves, con-men, drug dealers and sex pests would particularly appreciate the chance to be the law enforcers for a few days each year. Brown envelopes would thrive.
     
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  7. DestroyCurrency? Registered Member

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    But they wouldn't be able to get away with all that stuff because they would all have partners, just like most departments do it now. And plus, I don't think anybody would put known scumbags on a community security detail.

    And drugs would be legal in my moneyless society
     
  8. arauca Banned Banned

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    In the past years , One cap was assigned for X square block , the cop was familiar with the activity of the community, he was the counselor the security man amd so on , the people in the community cooperated with the officer . Now days the cop is an enemy of the community he is a by-passer and people don't trust them , and there is hardly any coperation
     
  9. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    So now you would have drug dealers, rapists, and other violent criminals partnering with each other...OH Great! Fortunately, your idea will never become reality because most people have functioning brains. In days gone by, and if you had paid attention in history class, you would know we have had many experiences with corrupt police forces. Today we have professional police forces - highly trained police forces. Police officers are screened to ensure they are not deviants and even with that screening an occasional deviant gets in. So now you want to open the door for deviants and criminals into our police forces...right.

    And just what is "our police problem" you are trying to fix?
     
  10. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    1,595
    See what I mean about the box?
    Modern police forces have no deviants or corruption; never beat up innocent joggers or shoot women who drive without a license, or take a bribe or operate a protection racket or take kick-backs from illicit business... sure. And I have some lovely swamp-land for sale. Since police forces are professional, they're all the law enforcement there is - entrenched. If the sheriff and his thugs terrorize a town, the citizens have no recourse. If the state police are directed by a right-wing governor, they shoot protesting students and striking workers. If the top brass is racist, they'll harass Black and Hispanic citizens. Every kind of injustice and graft can become institutionalized, systemic and pretty much untouchable.

    If all the citizens took turns at patrolling the streets and responding to emergencies, they would also be aware that how well they do on their watch is exactly how eager the next shift will be to come to their aid if needed. Plus, you can hardly overestimate the boost to people's self-respect of being responsible for their community.

    Only the criminalization of drugs makes dealing profitable - just as prohibition made bootlegging profitable. If pot can be grown, free, in the city parks, who's going to bother selling it? More serious drugs should be controlled and inspected, though, for safety.

    Most crime is about money. Remove that motivation, and you can turn most of the prisons into squash courts and breweries.
     
  11. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    So if you act like a scumbag you wouldn't have to work security? Sounds like jury duty x10.
     
  12. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    this has to be the single stupidest idea I have ever herd, how exactly do you think these security guards are going to do anything? training to investigate crimes? nope, forensics? nope, hostage negotiation? firearms training? the law itself? god what a dumb idea.

    You might as well have everyday people doing brain surgery
     
  13. DestroyCurrency? Registered Member

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    First off, forensics and evidence collection. Is usually handled by a special unit, and in this hypothetical society could be handled by non-uniformed scientists, they probably could do it better anyway. They would be separate from the community patrols. Hostage negotiation? They already have special units for this, so it wouldn't be handled by the local 'security guards.' As for firearms training, practically anybody can get a CCL after taking a basic weapons safety course.

    And as for the law, it would be greatly simplified from its current form. It would be simple enough so that it would make common sense, and minor violations would be eliminated.

    I don't think my idea is that dumb.
     
  14. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    How do you remove that motivation? Even if you abolish money, the same people would be trying to grab whatever else it is, in your hypothetical society, that confers wealth.
     
  15. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    It's really hard to imagine anything different, or a society not malfunctioning as seen on the nightly news. But, in real life, most communities do function through co-operation and people do look out for one another. With fairly minor political reform, a great deal of crime could be prevented. With a major overhaul, you might even get a nation that's good for the majority of people to live in. Poor old "innovative" US has been hyped and goaded into such hostile factions, it can't even think of alternative methods anymore.

    You'd think, when somebody presents an idea, others would consider its merits and riff on their own interpretation of how various aspects of the idea might be made to work, and what obstacles might need to be overcome, what technical problems solved. Instead, the typical response, these days, is jeering, name-calling and piling on of why it's the stupidest thing since a Reagan second term. ... Oh wait... they went for that....too
     
  16. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Well, I'm quite you are right that societies that have more cohesion and are less atomised will be likely to have lower crime levels. (Japan, for example?) One might suspect that the US cult of the individual, coupled with its cultural melting pot status and the impersonality of tis huge cities, gives it particular challenges. But I do not see this as a matter of "fairly minor political reform". (We have the same debate in the UK, though perhaps the proportion of the population that feels alienated is not so large.)
     
  17. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    First of all, the government is the people, if we wanted this system we could vote for it. Secondly no one wants this system. There is some small scale community "policing", but they carry no weapons and have no real power. As bad as some police are, the system would be a million times worse with no training.

    What do you mean by unpopular laws? If they were truly unpopular, it wouldn't be a law. Selective enforcement of the law is the same as lawlessness.
     
  18. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    Exchemist:
    Debate? Yes, you also have - though less huge - marginalized populations, and for some of the same reasons. But it might be worthwhile examining more closely the vaunted "cult of the individual" - i.e. how it's actually working at street level (better yet, classroom level! See just how much a non-conforming American is respected) and at the famous "melting pot" (more accurately, ghettoization from inner Detroit to Congress.) Neither of those policies would naturally lead to crime without the deification of money.

    By minor reform, I mean cleaning up the corrupt electoral process. Making representation more representative (de-gerrymander, for example, and open voting to the poor and dark-skinned who are currently excluded) would be step well on the moderate side of revolution. Taking money right out of politics would be sensible, but major - a potentially bloodless revolution.
    What they're heading for now is major, bloody and disastrous.
     
  19. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

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    Spidergoat:
    You can't vote for anything that isn't offered in the policy platform of the two mainstream parties, and they can't offer anything their financial backers disapprove. You can't even put in place a pathetic little health insurance expansion that's been duly voted into law, because powerful vested interests are able to block popular legislation. That government is most emphatically not of, for and by the people - or in USian Newspeak wethepeople.

    Where is the informed poll?

    Except the vigilantes and everybody who can and does carry a gun.
    Who suggested no training? Why assume that? The cops who have already been trained aren't going to disappear; they're still part of the communities they live in. Nothing stops them from training others. The police colleges still exist and the instructors there are just as capable of bringing their expertise to members of the local watch.

    No, it's the same as despotism, graft, systemic racism, exclusion, cronyism, influence-peddling, pandering, bullying and all the other things that go on all the time under the pretext of law and order in a badly corrupted political climate.
     
  20. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Whilst, as a Brit, I can readily sympathise with the wish to take the money out of US politics, I do not think this would do that much to solve ghettoisation or instil inclusive collective pride in communities. I'm tempted to suggest in the US case that getting people out of the isolation of their cars might help, but would that be popular?

    Education has to be key to this I feel, as it is to so many things. But one has to avoid the charge of overt social engineering, as this too is unpopular, as we know all too well from the unhappy UK experience of political meddling in the classroom.
     
  21. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    There are certainly problems with our system, but the popular vote still determines all.


    We just call them elections.


    The OP did. If they get full training, that makes them cops, just like the ones we have now. Otherwise, people have regular jobs and stuff, there isn't time. You're just talking about incomplete training, like a weekend course, and I wouldn't feel comfortable with that.
     
  22. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    24,690
    Bad idea. Real police are selected for some very important qualities that the majority of the population don't have:
    • Excellent "people skills," the ability to decide whether someone is telling the truth, whether they intend to cause harm, whether they can be trusted, etc., in just a few seconds based upon body language, facial expressions, and what they say. This allows them to figure out whom they need to concentrate on, with very high accuracy.
    • Ability to withstand insults and abuse from people who are upset and agitated, without becoming angry and irrational.
    • Personality to inspire trust and obedience.
    • Willingness to put themselves in danger in order to protect other people.
    If you're about to say, "Wait a minute, not all of them are like that," my answer is, "Unfortunately that's true. But how many civilians come even close to satisfying those criteria?"

    In addition, police undergo intensive training in an academy, usually for at least one year and in some jurisdictions longer. Not all of them graduate. In the academy they learn to use and improve the skills I listed above. They also receive intensive training in the use of firearms. Despite the stories in the news, police are far less likely than the average citizen to shoot someone in anger, by mistake, accidentally or in confusion, or to have their gun taken away by a criminal, to use it for suicide, or for a member of their household to use it, or for a child to get hold of it, or for it to be stolen and used in a crime.

    They are far more trustworthy with their weapons than soldiers are, and waaaaay more trustworthy than the average citizen. Do you really want your goofball neighbor Shaky Pete driving around your town with a gun??? Most police officers retire without ever drawing their weapons except on the target range.

    Police are already being criticized for racism, for example in New York City's "stop and frisk" law. Do you want the Rednecks in the trailer park on the edge of your town running around with guns and badges? Or for that matter, the guys with the Viva la Raza t-shirts on the other side of town? Do you want the Westboro Baptists to have a turn so they can shoot all the gay people and make God once again proud of America?

    George Zimmerman was a perfect example of what happens when you give an ordinary citizen the authority to be a cop (in his case the authority was actually imaginary), without the screening and training to do the job properly.

    My belly-laughs about your poorly thought-out fantasy of administering an entire post-industrial worldwide civilization like a Stone Age tribe of a few dozen family members are already on record on this website.

    Apparently your lack of understanding about how humans and their societies function is not limited to economics. I hope you're as young as you seem to be, so you'll be disabused of these preposterous (and in this case downright dangerous) notions after a few years in a university.
     
  23. DestroyCurrency? Registered Member

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    While I could talk about science on this forum all I want, its more fun to talk about destroying currency. Maybe I should correct every idiot that asks an unbelievably stupid question about the laws of physics here. But usually somebody gets to them first.
     

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