Racial Bias And Police Brutality

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Black Americans are more than twice as likely as white Americans to be unarmed when they are shot and killed by police officers, according to a study published in the Journal of Criminology and Public Policy. In addition, the study finds that racial bias is a contributing factor (Schumaker). How does racial bias influence police brutality? Defined, “Police brutality is the use of excessive physical or verbal assault during police procedures, such as apprehending or interrogating a suspect. Deadly force is not always excessive force. However, when deadly force exceeds the force that is necessary to create a safe environment, it is considered police brutality.” The United States has an abhorrent history embracing racial relations. Police brutality has historically been perpetrated against individuals in lower socioeconomic levels and the social marginalized. It has been permitted against citizens who have participated in strikes during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s by spraying them down with hoses and attacking them with police dogs. This behavior has been motivated by racial stereotypes. Many police officers believe blacks are more violent than other races, and this image has been reflected in media quite often. These stereotypes are rooted in the sordid history of enslavement, genocide, and segregation. Although, stereotypes are not entirely the problem that encourages police brutality. Rampant discrimination and disparate treatment of certain minorities in the judicial

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