Learning Half The Lesson

Yesterday another unarmed person was killed by the discharge from a police officer’s weapon. This time, Antonio Zambrano-Montes, an Hispanic working in a largely agricultural community was the victim. Initial reports claim Zambrano-Montes was throwing rocks at an intersection and refused to allow police to arrest him. Other reports add that Zambrano-Montes had a history of mental illness. Hmmm.

Law enforcement agents across the country are entrusted with weapons. They receive training on how to use these guns and are required to periodically attend refreshers courses. Over time this training has focused almost exclusively on how to kill or totally disable the accused as a means of protecting the life of the police officer. Hmmm.

What, of course, is missing is training that makes using the weapon the absolute last option.  Like the old west, if a police officers feels he/she must draw a weapon, is there some way to discharge the gun without the intention of using lethal force?

Law enforcement professionals are quick to reference the harden criminal who, if given the chance, will kill the police officer first. The law enforcement experts place the primary responsibility on the citizen to fully comply with the police officer’s direction as the best method to avoid tragic shootings. But I don’t think police arrest exclusively harden criminals.  Hmmm.

There seems to have been a country-wide streak of “police kill unarmed person” which begs the question of why?

I would suggest that communities truly interested determine what type of training their law enforcement professionals receive. Our streets are frequent places where mentally or english language challenged citizens roam. A police officers commands, under these circumstances, will fall on “deaf ears”.

Hmmm.

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