Not as insane as some media pundits have made it sound recently, especially when many of those pouring scorn on the idea were just as recently warning us about the encroaching police state.
The police do need to be defunded, more specifically they need to have some of their operations curtailed, and the best way to do this is to cut their budgets. Also, they need to be held to account every time they abuse their power. There are signs this is happening with the recent Executive Order by Donald Trump. It may be this will be the real legacy of George Floyd, a man who would otherwise have been remembered for crimes of violence and a life wasted by drug abuse, if he had been remembered at all.
So what aspects of policing can be defunded? How about no-knock warrants? This is more a matter of reform than defunding. SWAT teams will still be needed for genuine emergencies, but there have been far too many raids in which innocent people have been killed. A no-knock raid is really suitable only in a life or death situation, and how many of those are there that are not terrorist-related?
In New York City, plainclothes squads interacting with the public have already been reassigned. New York is the old stomping ground of Dan Bongino, and he has made it clear he isn’t happy with this. Sad thing, isn’t it Dan, no more agents provocateurs, no more “controlled” drug buys?
How about disbanding the vice squad too, like throughout the nation? In recent years we have heard a lot about sex trafficking. This is the new narrative of the anti-prostitution lobby; don’t be fooled by the claim that countless numbers of young women and underage girls are being “trafficked” across the Western world. Far better to legalise this sordid trade so women can be protected from not only violent clients but corrupt police officers, like Daniel Holtzclaw. In England, while prostitution isn’t illegal, keeping a brothel is. So all it would take is a slight tweak in the law to enable two or more prostitutes to work together from an apartment, taking them off the street and increasing their safety.
Again, in the UK and increasingly other countries, especially France and Canada, pressure by feminist and powerful political lobbies has led to the creation of all manner of offences which are not really crimes. In the UK, the police seem to spend more time monitoring Twitter and other social media in case somebody says something offensive than pounding the beat. At least one police force has announced it will treat misogyny as a “hate crime”. Whistling at an attractive woman in the street is a crime?
Police everywhere like easy targets, which is why they are often so eager to engage with motorists over the most trivial of incidents or non-incidents as pointed out here. But it isn’t only the police who need to be reined in, it is over-zealous, corrupt and at times simply dumb prosecutors. The witch-hunt of Donald Trump supporters saw the FBI attempting to entrap people for imaginary crimes, and charging them with lying to federal officers if they misremembered the date of an inconsequential meeting. Innocent defendants are bludgeoned into pleading guilty by being threatened with Draconian sentences should they proceed to trial and be convicted. The whole system needs serious reform, and state agents who abuse the process for whatever reason need to be held to account. Slashing their budgets to make them concentrate on real crimes is a long overdue first step in that direction.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.