STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Help Wanted: Desperate Police Departments Ditch Standards
By The Daily Bell Staff - June 14, 2017

I would take one properly trained officer over 10 thugs any day. Yet while departments across the country are facing police shortages, the only thing they can think to do is cut the standards for hiring.

But with killings by officers forcing a public reckoning over whether the police deserve to be seen automatically as the good guys, departments in major cities are struggling to fill thousands of openings: 1,000 in Chicago, nearly 300 in Phoenix and 200 in Detroit. And with the additional mandate to become as diverse as the communities they serve, police departments are rethinking recruitment standards once considered sacrosanct.

New Orleans, with more than 400 openings, no longer automatically disqualifies those who have injected heroin or smoked crack. Aurora, Colo., has stopped using military-style running tests, but now checks how quickly candidates can get out of a squad car.

Police could stop arresting people for drug crimes, and focus on violent and property crimes if they wanted to get by with less personnel. They could even pull some officers off speed-trap duty and actually respond to desperate calls for help.

But no, the solution is to simply hire heroin addicts and crack heads. That will surely improve the tensions between the public and police. How could this go wrong, hiring even lower quality officers than before?

This is absurd. The whole problem of police abuse stems from a lack of proper training and the wrong people in the job. Now, just to fill their ranks, they are ridiculously relaxing their standards. This will only lead to more corruption, and police less fit to actually help when needed.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel of Chicago, where the police are seeking 970 officers, said in January that he had been rethinking a prohibition on those with juvenile records.

In Chicago, where police data shows African-Americans are stopped by the police far more often than whites, disqualifying applicants for minor or youthful offenses can exclude minority candidates at a time when the department is desperate to attract them.

And there is another feel-good worthless plan to help the situation: relax standards to fill the spots with enough minority police to make it seem like a department isn’t racist. Surely black cops could never shoot an innocent person, or abuse their authority. And if they have to hire those with a criminal record in order to hit their racial quotas, so be it.

All of the government’s solutions are just absurd, while they ignore the actual root of police abuse: that it is a government job. Government jobs do not have the same incentives for good behavior, and deterrents for corruption. Cops need to be fired for wrongdoing, not given a vacation.

And they need to be arrested when they victimize people from the communities they supposedly serve. They are individuals responsible for their actions, and allowing anyone to hide behind a government, uniform, or badge is a recipe for power abuse.

Instead of hiring people that are more likely to abuse the public, based on their past, the very first thing that would improve everything is to stop arresting people for victimless crimes.

Chuck Canterbury, president of the national Fraternal Order of Police, said there was concern about whether the changes would result in a generation of ill-prepared officers.

“People are talking about it, but there is such a recruiting and retention problem — they’re searching for ways to bring bodies in,” he said. “But I’m not sure reducing standards is the best way to do that.”

We don’t need more warm bodies on the streets starting conflicts, we need more detectives actually solving the large percentage of real crimes which go by the wayside in favor of making minor drug arrests.

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  • Erik Garcés

    I’m sorry, but the problem isn’t that simple. If the job depends on the right people being on it, then the problem isn’t the people, it’s the JOB. No one should have the unchallenged authority that modern police officers do. NO ONE. Lord Acton’s quote comes to mind here.

    The real root cause is victim-less crimes, or laws because the government said so. Those laws which do not conform with natural law are going to come into conflict with the citizenry. There’s no room for interpretation with civil servants whom for which it’s always a digital binary of either or. There’s no grey area in such edicts from the state.

    Thus, we see people shot dead for selling a cigarette, violent encounters over seat belt usage or jaywalking… Is it any less safe when clearly no other traffic is present yet you didn’t come to a complete stop and pause at an intersection? Yet the police have no discretion, you either did it, or not.

    If we returned to an English Common Law tradition which came about precisely to stop such abuses, we could return to a peaceful and self regulating society. Once we abdicated personal responsibility and expected government to be the arbiter of morality and self control, the regulatory monster we now suffer under was inevitable.

    As long as the symptoms remain the focal point of solutions and not the root cause, nothing can really change. Those who gave us this system and those who benefit from it cannot possibly ever offer a real fix.

    At this point, only a total collapse of the society, revolution or civil war can. We’ve all been given ample notice, what happens next to you is totally your own choice.

    • Sven

      Well said.

    • HaplessChild

      A very thoughtful post, sir.

    • paul crosley

      Simple solution. Get rid of all LEOs. No so called “law enforcement” officers. Hire only trained Peace Officers. Locally known people who are well trained and well paid. Make it a treasonous offense to break their oaths. Shooting dogs, confiscating money, raping suspects, planting false evidence, torturing people etc. Heavy jail time. If they enter the wrong place or shoot someone wrongly……Capital Punishment.

    • You are right. Only solve conflicts that are natural not caused by… the “conflict solvers.’ Victimless crimes give way too much power to the government.

  • Mstrjack

    Power corrupts. That fact is innate in human nature. Police officers are no different.

    When police officers are employed to control other people that’s what they will do.

    It is the job of a police officer to find people who are not behaving according to societal rules then kidnap and assault them, and take their freedom away by putting them in cages and feeding them slop. That’s the reality of a police state.

    Who really would want to get up in the mornings, put on a costume and badge and do that to their fellow human beings? It is a crappy job.

    • pcnot

      “Who really would want to get up in the mornings, put on a costume and
      badge, and do that to their fellow human beings? It is a crappy job.” Answer: thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of losers who get off on having authority.

      • James

        Remember in Monty Python’s “Life of Brian,” when Brian told the Roman guards they didn’t have to follow orders? And the guards replied, “We like orders!”

  • Sven

    America is absurd and is losing its mind. Most of Western values were formed on the back of coercion and fantasy and now we are paying the piper. Wait for the great paradigm shift that is surely coming and be prepared. Mentally.

    • Boysie

      One load of KR** lead to another – Why are Americans so addicted to KR** – (1) – America existed before the Euro-parasites got there, (2) Leadership does involve a very large part of coercion – however EVIL often travels along the same road, (3) – Do you know what a (PS) is, do you actually believe that you will be sitting on a Bar Stool – having a cold beer – while the fan is beating the SH** outside…I won’t conclude by saying Get Real – in your case that is NOT atainable…

      • Sven

        I don’t think I gave you enough information to make the RIDICULOUS statements you made but reality is a function of the observer.

        • GH

          Amen Sven.

  • Rosicrucian32

    One has to take their own destiny in their hands. We have far passed the era in which we can rely on the Police to protect the average citizen. It is not their fault, it is the politicians. They want a dirty job done, but with cell phones and progressives a dirty job is….well, dirty.
    If standards are lowered it doesn’t mean ALL hired will exhibit poor judgment any more than high standards ensure good judgment; however the statistical likelihood of the candidates from lower standards hiring practices increases as these individuals have already compromised a standard value of discipline at one time.
    I do think that cops that had a checkered youth will make a good cop, I may have known one or two in my time ;). I just know that the first step will lead to more like the ever increasing debt.
    We are on the precipice, and as I opened our own safety belongs to us. The police will be busy chasing taxpayers for delinquent taxes, and parking fines. The true detective will be replaced with a kinder and gentler “inquisitor” who will have to operate within the boundaries set forth by the progressives. We must keep in mind they think that the prisons have people in them that can be potential constituents, and to keep them out of a cage serves their interests, not the taxpayers.

  • autonomous

    Why not imprison law-keepers for their own safety and turn everybody else loose? They’d need fewer prisons, although they might have to divert the military from overseas to protect the prisons.

    • Jonathan Halsey

      Now that is thinking outside the box!

  • James

    One problem is with the idea that the police are there to protect the public. It is not realistic nor desirable to have the police be thought of as the primary body guards of individual members of the general public. People need to think in terms of self defense. The police exist to come take you away and deliver you to a court if you are suspected of having committed a crime. Nothing drives me crazier or fills me with more intense frustrated rage than hearing some idiot say ” you don’t need a gun; the police will protect you.”

    • Totally agree. Individuals have lost their sense of personal responsibility for their safety.

  • Praetor

    It all just means, when things get really really bad, there won’t be any cops. Then to regain a peaceable environment, the people will have to come together to maintain the peace in their local area of living. Of course, we will then have to remember why it is that peace enforcement where called the police, and avoid a repeat.!!!

  • Doc

    DB: “All of the government’s solutions are just absurd, while they ignore the actual root of police abuse: that it is a government job.”

    I would like to emphasize that it’s a problem related to a monopolistic government. Governments have existed for most of human history without being monopolistic. The current model is a very late imposition.

    When they monopolize a territory people have to submit and can’t change governing body unless leaving the territory. That is what the police is exploiting and the root of the problem is the territorial monopoly current governments have.

    Blame the monopoly not the government per se.

  • Jonathan Halsey

    Okay. How do you get more detectives?

    • It would require lots of reform, since most of the focus is on the patrol officers. The government model could continue to be patched, and divert uniformed officers salaries into proper pay for real police work to be done, but really competition is required. Already many wealthy rely on private investigators when a crime occurs to solve it, rather than depend on the government.

  • Kernel01

    Got a solution in AI: start developing robotic cops and also the use of more sophisticated drones. Maybe even some robotic canines to help out. A real mechanized police force. Perhaps a real ED-209 could keep the peace in really bad hoods.

  • JohnnyZ

    People here make the mistake that the police / FBI / CIA are there to protect the public from the occasional criminal / terrorist, but actually their real mission is to protect the owners class and their minions (administrators) from the sheeple and make sure the laws are only for the sheeple and also to also keep the herd in orderly condition. Another mistake is to think that there are “victimless” crimes. Well, when one sheeple of the herd gets sick by e.g. consuming drugs (which diminishes his/her productivity and increases the herd’s carrying cost), then the owners do sustain a loss. Just ask George Carlin.

  • SnakePlissken

    “Public Servants” don’t work for the public. They have less education and professional experience than you do, they get paid more than you do, can’t be fired, get free health care and pensions when they retire at 60. Also, they have the authority to confiscate your property, put you in jail, or even shoot you. They don’t work for us. We work for them.

  • Hawk’s Yesteryear

    Whenever an employee is protected and exempted from the very law they claim to uphold, abuse and corruption is sure to follow. Cops can do (as we have witnessed) whatever they want and they never face justice. Also, there are too many people arrested for nonsense stuff. But, at the end of the day, it’s all about money (revenue).

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