Defunding police ‘dumbest idea I ever heard’ (Opinion)
Jim Gearhart has caught wind of a policy idea getting traction: "Defund the police."
It's a slogan that means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. For some, with the most extreme interpretation, it means totally dismantling police departments and doing away with conventional law enforcement.
For others, it's a bit more complicated — it means pulling funding away from police, rethinking what police are responsible for doing, and using the money to support other sorts of services alongside a more limited role for cops. For instance, that might mean sending a social services provider, not an armed officer, to deal with even a dangerous mental health issue.
And in some cases, it might mean abolishing existing police departments to start over with a new plan. That's what happened in Camden nearly a decade ago. It remains to be seen what may happen in Minneapolis, where a white officer has been charged with the death of an unarmed black main he restrained by putting his knee to the man's neck for more than eight minutes — an incident that set off nationwide protests calling for racial justice, as well as looting and rioting in several major cities.
Jim says this isn't going to go how civil rights advocates hope.
"When you emasculate law enforcement, then it opens it up for people who do not follow the law, by definition," Jim says in this week's program.
And, he argues, when that happens, people in high-crime areas — including the minority populations protesters say are disproportionately abused by police — suffer.
Be sure to tell Jim and Bob Williams what you think: The Jim Gearhart show is LIVE on Facebook every Thursday at 10:30 a.m., at Facebook.com/NJ1015. Got an idea for an upcoming installment of Jim's show? Meet Jim at Facebook.com/NJ1015 to suggest it in the comments, or email Jim@nj1015.com.
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That's just part of what Jim and Bob Williams take on in the latest installment of his show, also available as a podcast. Check out the full episode to hear the rest.
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