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Video Can Black Lives Matter & Law Enforcement See Eye To Eye?

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15:07   |   May 16, 2018

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Can Black Lives Matter & Law Enforcement See Eye To Eye?
Can Black Lives Matter & Law Enforcement See Eye To Eye? thumb Can Black Lives Matter & Law Enforcement See Eye To Eye? thumb Can Black Lives Matter & Law Enforcement See Eye To Eye? thumb

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  • The phrase all lives matter was derived from black lives matter to subvert black lives matter and I won't come here and sit down and say
  • That that's okay
  • Can I have my law enforcement go to the left pool of light
  • Can I have my black lives matter supporters go to the right pool of light
  • I regularly fear for my life
  • You know, I'm an armed patrol officer so I do
  • Respond to burglar alarms. So if someone breaks into someone's house, have a gun
  • I would have to respond to that certain situation. So I do fear for my life in a way
  • I guess you can say -I do something that, I think every black man,
  • every black person in this country, many people of color have been trained to do and
  • That's when a law enforcement officer gets behind me and I'm driving, I'm making sure I'm signaling. I'm checking my speed
  • I'm thinking of all the different legitimate ways that you could stop me and in that moment
  • I recognized and I realized that I'm not a scholar, with a bachelor's in political science a bachelor's in
  • sociology a master's in public policy. In that moment, I'm just another black man
  • to that officer, and that scares me.
  • I maybe could have stepped forward
  • I feel scared for my life when I'm at work
  • often when you get pulled over and all the thoughts and things that are going through your mind or where when I pull a car
  • over I'm thinking about where I'm at on the highway, how I'm gonna pull this vehicle over,
  • Did I run the plate? Did it come back to that vehicle? Am I buckled in? Am I not buckled in? because most officers are
  • shot and killed during traffic stops
  • And as I approach I put my hand on that car to leave my handprint because if I'm shot and killed that person is further
  • Incriminated by the evidence of my prints being on their car
  • But I don't feel afraid for my life as a citizen but at work I definitely do and that's a choice I made
  • I choose not to live in fear
  • If the question was do I feel less safe now than I did five years ago
  • I would say yes, and I think that that's because we have rampant social chaos
  • That's expanding and I think that that's playing a large role in a lot of the trends that we're seeing
  • - What do you mean by social chaos?
  • Um, out of wedlock birth rates
  • Statistically, you know that sets a child back five times more likely to be poor and nine times more likely to drop out of school
  • And 20 times more likely to end up in prison. -I mean the chaos that I'm seeing more recently is
  • white men walking into schools with ar-15s and slaughtering people
  • yeah, and that is what you're seeing and what you're not seeing is the
  • dozens of homicides that occur in Chicago on a daily basis and that speaks to
  • Certainly a media that's desirous to push an agenda and a narrative. That factually doesn't bear out. There is a massive
  • disparity between black crime and white crime at large and obviously that's going to lead to
  • accelerated interactions with law enforcement. -Or is it the criminalization
  • of black people? when you have more police officers
  • patrolling a concentrated area then of course, you have more stops
  • You have more you know situations where police officers say
  • Oh, they didnt signal and then when I pulled them over I pulled all occupants out of the car
  • I searched the car
  • I found this gun allegedly buried somewhere and all of a sudden now you have a crime. As a public defender
  • The reputation is that you know, I'm going to lose most of my cases. I have won far more cases than I have lost
  • My name is Alisa Blair. I am African American
  • I'm also a criminal defense attorney. As a public defender I've seen the mistreatment of my clients
  • I see the disproportionate incarceration of black and brown people and I see the excessive force used in arrests
  • Police should be given more resources.
  • I think police should definitely be given more resources so that they have other options besides
  • killing people. Officers should have the resources available to them to
  • handle a situation
  • without casualties on either side.
  • Yeah, I mean as an officer I appreciate hearing that from a member of the public and from a public defender
  • and can speak to it for
  • myself and my department and what I've seen in other departments in the area and know that we need more resources and
  • different types of training
  • communication techniques to de-escalate situations and different types of least force option
  • techniques but as a small woman, I also want to be able to physically protect myself and it's
  • It's a hard balance
  • The largest expense for almost every municipality and county is Public Safety
  • There's plenty of money
  • But we don't have is enough implicit bias training the things that we carry about ourselves
  • that define how we interpret who we're interacting with. We don't have enough
  • contextualizing of the communities that you're serving draw officers from the communities from which they serve. That way when they go back and their policing
  • their own community that's deeper than just the race of the officers
  • So you think that black police officers need to be trained to be more sensitive to the black community? Is that what you're saying?
  • No. I think black officers that are policing black community should come from those communities. And I think a white officer who comes from that community
  • might even be more effective than a black officer from somewhere else. -I agree
  • And I think I think that that's a great point
  • which is that an officer, a white officer, a black officer, a female officer, a hispanic officer,
  • could be just as good as any other or better and that's because there are things other than
  • skin color and I think that what's so concerning about this
  • dialogue is that it is pushing us further back into
  • black communities, white communities when really I thought that the goal of Martin Luther King was that we're gonna be moving to a
  • society where we were being judged by the content of our character if we keep moving further into identifying based on our groups
  • I think that we're doing a disservice to his message, which I think was very powerful and that united the country in many ways
  • - But not at the time in Martin Luther King's time
  • White folks hated him, it causes me to bristle and have an emotional reaction whenever somebody says
  • You know black people are killing folks 50% in violent crimes and then says Martin Luther King united the country
  • Martin Luther King would be down for Black Lives Matter
  • The next statement is
  • I believe that all lives matter
  • It's a little bit surprising below all of this stuff below skin deeper than all this there is a
  • Intrinsic god-given life that's put inside of all of us
  • I think that it's concerning that any movement would reject the fundamental premise of that, while preaching for equality
  • - Exactly.
  • At that point, you're really not an equality movement if you're really only interested in speaking to your specific group
  • I truly believe and I agree with everything that you say. Everyone deserves life and I believe that you know life is a gift
  • Plain and simple all life counts
  • -Yeah
  • all life matters, all life deserves a chance
  • - Yeah, I think that especially in this platform but also in the world in the country that we live in today
  • stating that all lives matter takes away from
  • the inequality that's happening in the world. Of course all lives matter.
  • - It negates the fact that something has to be addressed and if you don't address it, and you don't
  • recognize that there is a problem that has to be changed then you never fucking change it.
  • But that's not our intention. Our intention was just an answer a simple question, but it's not
  • (Talking over each other)
  • - The question is framed as do all lives matter, if you ask me if all lives have intrinsic value,
  • If all lives are valuable, if all lives are worthy
  • I would have said "hell yes" and would have been the first one in my chair. All lives matter is a specific phrase
  • similar to Blue Lives Matter and anything else that mattered after black lives were exclaimed to have mattered to detract,
  • to
  • appropriate, to subvert the message and the framing and the narrative that's being brought to us by the Black Lives Matter Movement
  • So I don't think anybody here in this room thinks that any life is less worthy than another's. But the phrase all lives matter
  • was derived from Black Lives Matter, to subvert Black Lives Matter and I won't come here and sit down and say that that's okay.
  • - I mean, I feel like we're just kind of going into the weeds here.The question wasn't if black lives matter
  • It was a simple question. Do you believe that all lives matter?- You don't think that's an interesting phrase?
  • Is that a phrase you use quite frequently before?
  • - I think not really. I think that you can attach whatever you want right now. That's a thing
  • I try and step back from you know
  • Whatever sort of identity political stuff we have going on and I try and deal with things head-on
  • Based on reality when someone says to me, do you think all lives matter? I answer unequivocably
  • "yes", every time the same way if you ask me is black lives matter or female lives matter
  • I will answer the same way.
  • - Do black lives matter.? - Yes. They do.
  • I had conflicting feelings about coming here today.
  • -For me I was conflicted because
  • I don't feel like I should speak for black oppression, but as a white woman
  • I think that I can be of value to other white people who may not understand
  • I'm Sandra Cruse
  • Well, I'm from the 60s and I went to jail a lot for fighting for women's rights and as a human being I think it's important
  • that I speak out and speak up for injustices
  • - I'm feeling conflicted now as
  • Someone who steps into the law enforcement side as if we are on opposite sides
  • I am a law enforcement officer and a Black Lives Matter supporter.
  • I find myself searching for what to do and
  • how to make a difference and I've had moments of thinking about leaving the force
  • I finally had a realization that this gives me an opportunity to have a different angle
  • as a white woman and also as a police officer
  • to potentially make a difference. Even if it's just with changing myself.
  • - I didn't hesitate.
  • I've been a civilian my entire life and I consider it an honor to have an opportunity to provide voice
  • for law enforcement and the men and women that serve our communities
  • I think it's fundamentally important for society to respect law enforcement men and women that serve our communities with
  • tremendous honor and distinction end up getting a bad wrap and I think that that's very harmful.
  • I think that it is important, I think it's imperative to
  • speak whenever you have an opportunity to and I think that all of us in whatever
  • movements we're part of or whatever belief systems were part of should use our gifts.
  • - You know de-escalation training is sitting in a room like this with a PowerPoint and
  • walking officers through scenarios and nothing,
  • Nothing in a scenario is ever going to be like the real world. In defense of officers
  • like only those of us that walk in the shoes of
  • having a badge and a gun and being in these high-stress situations can really articulate what it's like to make these
  • split-second decisions. With our training officers need to be in these types of discussions owning their shit and being like
  • I did this wrong and I have this prejudice and how can I sit with people who can teach me and change me?
  • - This is what I think is sort of dangerous about a conversation like this
  • Is that really the only thing that I want law enforcement being trained on is the law
  • Okay
  • there's nebulous conversation about
  • thinking about how I think about things and --
  • - some of us in law enforcement think of ourselves as social workers with a gun
  • - and that's concerning because
  • your job is to enforce the law. - As someone in the field who wants more de-escalation training
  • It's not because I don't believe in a lot of the laws that I enforce and it is my job to enforce the law
  • I'm not a law warning officer. That's not what I signed up to do, but we are given the discretion to make
  • choices and
  • that's why we need more training because we're human beings just
  • in my perspective and I appreciate your support of law enforcement and your perspective
  • - Yeah, and I appreciate your perspective as well as your your real service that you've done
  • So and I don't want our disagreement... Certainly don't take away from my respect and admiration for your service. -Thank you for your support.
  • - I think we all respect the service of everyone who works to the service of others. I don't think anybody in this room
  • is against individual officers. The conversation is to take a step back and recognize that this institution is
  • a relic of
  • anglo policing from european culture, but also slave catching and
  • deep-rooted
  • racism in American policy and we need to take that step back and
  • recenter this conversation on the fact that it's bigger than just an officer.
  • - I think part of the problem is that we're still so segregated. Where do we go to have these conversations?
  • Where do we go to learn from each other to break down the stereotypes? It's systemic and I am so
  • thrilled that there's a Black Lives Matter Movement. It's really exciting.
  • - Guys thank you so much. I know this hasn't been an easy one, but I appreciate your time
  • Feel free to continue the discussion if you'd like outside
  • It's a pleasure I really appreciate you speaking your truth and hearing mine as well. I really appreciate all of you guys. Okay, real pleasure. -Likeways, yes, thank you.
  • Hey guys,
  • I'm Jason and I'm Dan and we just want say thank you once again for watching another episode of middle ground
  • As always, let us know in the comments what you think we want to get into these issues
  • We want to be able to heal divides
  • We want to be able to cross boundaries and also let us know what you think
  • Future episodes should be about. Click here to subscribe to more videos
  • click here to watch more videos, and we will catch you guys next time, nigga.

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