New Mexico is back in the news. After capturing the nation’s attention last year – October 28, 2013 – of a cop firing at a van full with kids, New Mexico is at it again.
On March 16, 2014, James Boyd, a 38 year old homeless man was stun gunned, bean bagged and gunned down with six round of live bullets by four different police officers. Based on images captured by a helmet-camera video (still photo above), Mr. Boyd had both hands up, surrendering and walking towards the officers when they opened fire.
The era where those types of actions in the police force were attributed to a “few bad apples” is long gone. The whole basket seems rotten. Everywhere in the country, there is a very, very sad and unfortunate refrain, unarmed civilians killed by police officers.
Some attribute the problem to lack of training, others to a lack of judgement. Regardless where the problem lies, there is an urgent need for a solution, for society cannot stand idle, spectatoring the frequent murders perpetrated by those who are supposed to prevent them in the first place.
I would surmise that society would be best served if only an elite group of physically, emotionally and psychologically well trained police officers are allowed to carry firearms on the job. Officers of that elite group could be called in special circumstances where the use of firearms may be necessary, warranted or justified.
The primary duty of a law enforcement officer is to protect the citizens of his community; everyone should feel comfortable seeing, interacting with law enforcement officers. Just the opposite is true today. Almost everywhere, there is a palpable distrust and disdain for law enforcement officers, and it’s justified most of the time.
The trigger happy law enforcement officers should be taken off the streets, retrained, re-assigned or relieved off their duty for anything less is unacceptable in a civilized society.
Follow Mike Ducheine on Twitter: @mducheiney
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