Tags: George Floyd Protests | Law Enforcement | pelosi | nypd | doj

Trump Puts Nation on Path to Defeat Police Defunding

new york city prostest against the police
Demonstrators calling for the defunding of police departments march through the borough of Brooklyn on June 5, 2020 in New York City. (Scott Heins/Getty Images)
 

By Tuesday, 16 June 2020 04:52 PM Current | Bio | Archive

While congressional Democrats attempt to "defund the police," President Trump is taking concerted action to improve American policing immediately; he has done so with his newest executive order emanating from the White House. 

Just prior to signing the executive order, the presdent declared, "We need to bring law enforcement and communities closer together, not drive them apart."

He thus summarized the common-sense approach his administration is taking with regard to a now critically important issue.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s caucus, conversely, is hoping to repackage a policy that the vast majority of Americans oppose, and is doing so in an attempt to appease a tiny, radical minority of activists.

Yet, Democrats are actually rushing to distance themselves from "defund the police" language because their effort to redefine the term to mean something other than what its progenitors obviously intended it to mean — the abolition of American police departments — has failed miserably. This attempt to rebrand the idea of taking resources away from police in order to combat mythological "systemic police racism" will do nothing to improve the lives of African Americans.

It will do far less to combat crime or reduce police use of force.

It will endanger communities needing it most.

There is, however, a very real opportunity to address the underlying issues that millions of Americans care about deeply enough to peacefully march in the streets about. The American people have spoken clearly. They feel that there is a pressing need to improve relations between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve.

You do not change that by slashing police budgets, tolerating more crime, or adding one more federal bureaucracy on top of the myriad civil rights agencies already scrutinizing police conduct for racism.

In the George Floyd case that ignited a nationwide outpouring of righteous indignation, the existing Department of Justice (DOJ) apparatus immediately sprang into action, adding a federal civil rights investigation to the ongoing departmental investigation, in Minneapolis, and the state murder prosecution in Minnesota.

What will reduce unnecessary uses of force is exactly what this new executive order seeks: wider adoption of best law enforcement practices and the reduction of crime. Crime — not "systemic racism" — drives arrests and other police interactions that, in a tiny percentage of cases, lead to the sort of abuses so incensing the nation.

The executive order will actually refund, rather than defund, law enforcement agencies to ensure that when arrests and interventions are made, they are done with minimum risk to suspects — and the public.

That "re-funding" comes with both a carrot and a stick.

Police departments that step up and get federal certification that their practices are in line with the successful efforts we made to reduce both crime and excessive use of force in, for example, my own New York Police Department (NYPD), will be eligible for significant federal funding. These include de-escalation training, better use-of-force standards, and information sharing between departments to ensure bad cops are not rehired elsewhere.

Departments that fail to make these popular reforms may stand to lose DOJ grants.

Reducing crime itself, however, will reduce the need for the sort of reactive policing sometimes leading to excessive use of force. We’ve seen that in the data, which clearly shows that as American police have succeeded in reducing violent crime; rates of police shootings have dropped along with a reduction in crime rates.

That’s why another section of the president’s order focuses on "co-responding" — not limiting policing, but incorporating other services such as mental health, homelessness, and the use of addiction specialists in police departments’ routine practices.

Great strides have been made in policing over the past 30 years.

I had the honor of serving in the NYPD when that revolution in law enforcement took place.

Far fewer Americans are killed by police in our largest cities than in the 1980s.

American police departments look — racially and in other ways — much more like the communities they serve than they did in the 1980s.

As the George Floyd killing proves, there is far more accountability than there was 30 years ago.

There is, however, still more that we can do.

The president’s executive order sets us on that path to accomplish those very things.

As New York City’s 40th Police Commissioner, Bernard Kerik was in command of the NYPD on September 11, 2001, and responsible for the city’s response, rescue, recovery, and the investigative efforts of the most substantial terror attack in world history. His 35-year career has been recognized in more than 100 awards for meritorious and heroic service, including a presidential commendation for heroism by President Ronald Reagan, two Distinguished Service Awards from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, The Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and an appointment as Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Read Bernard Kerik's Reports More Here.

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This attempt to rebrand the idea of taking resources away from police in order to combat mythological "systemic police racism" will do nothing to improve the lives of African Americans. It will do even less to combat crime or reduce police use of force.
pelosi, nypd, doj
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2020-52-16
Tuesday, 16 June 2020 04:52 PM
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