You know what a good cop could do?

Literally anything other than be a cop.

I bet they would make a great guidance counselor, therapist, helpline worker, emergency services aid or ambulance driver. They could do legal advocacy, social work, work within a community center, in the mental health industry, literally anything.

So my question is if you are someone who’s called to “serve and protect” why are you remaining in a position that is shown to do just the opposite of that?

If there are “good” cops, after seeing the events of police brutality over the last few months, how can they still support the police as a foundation, as a person?

How can they march side-by-side with white supremacists?

How can they philosophically be okay with being a cop any longer when the evidence is everywhere that the police are hurting peaceful protesters all over the country. I know only sadists enjoy firing rubber bullets into the skulls of young, innocent people.

So why not find something a little more in line with what a good cop might enjoy doing?

There are actually thousands of jobs that “a good cop” could do that aren’t rolling with thugs. The over-funded, peaceful citizen beating, agitator type of thugs that manipulate their power. The really nasty type who attack peaceful protesters.

The evidence is large. Police are abusing their power, acting violently and they need to be defunded and put in their proper place in society. Black people, BIPOC people, you are absolutely right and have been for such a long time. Fuck the police. And if you don’t agree with that statement I urge you to sit down and ask really yourself why.

Following black voices on social media is a start, but it’s not a full step. Neither is posting a black square and tagging #blacklivesmatter. I feel I can’t allow myself to just sit back, horrified either. The real horror is having black skin and seeing people just like you get murdered in broad daylight and with no retribution. Or seeing black bodies hanging across the United States without clear answers.

Currently I’m living in Canada. We absolutely cannot absolve ourselves of systemic racism north of the border. Black, Indigenous and People of Colour face racism in Toronto everyday. Our current premier, Doug Ford, has made deep cuts to the vital work of the anti-racism directorate. He also made vastly, misinformed comments about Canada not having the same, deep systemic roots as the USA, which he later retracted. He’s been asked to apologize on his comments about the black community as well. Our Prime Minister has done blackface more than once ffs.

Under the Ontario provincial statute, Toronto City Council legitimately has no power over how Toronto Police Services allocates their budget. Most of it goes towards salaries, Including paying the salaries of cops who are suspended, even paying for a cop to sit at home after he sexually exploited a 16-year-old.

According to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, Black Torontonians are 20 times more likely to be shot dead by police than white residents, Black people make up under 10% of the population in our city, yet they make up over 60% of cases where police used force resulting in death. That to me, looks like systemic racism.

The RCMP are no better. Last week, an RCMP deputy commissioner also denied systemic racism. While in March they beat a First Nations chief, Allen Adam, unarmed, on the ground, by repeatedly punching him in the head because he had an expired license plate. A 26-year-old First Nation woman named Chantel Moore was shot five times and killed by a New Brunswick police officer during a wellness check earlier in June. That to me, looks like systemic racism as well.

Currently, Toronto’s City Police budget is 1.07 billion dollars. City Service providers and community organizations doing preventative work receive less than 1 percent of that. This issue runs deeper, flick on the news and see headline after headline reporting on crime. Yet rarely are we ever talking about mental health, homelessness and poverty issues that seem to only be getting worse while receiving less funding. The first thing we could do, is come up with an alternative emergency number for mental health crises.

“That way, those people maybe don’t show up with lethal force, and that way we can ensure that people get the support that they need from people who are trained to deal with that very particular complex situation.”

Sandy Hudson, co-founder of BLM Toronto
February 2020 E-Newsletter: Budget Edition - Ana Bailão

Cops are clearly funded far more than they need to be. It’s time to think about alternatives to a system that is clearly not working. It’s time to listen to our BIPOC community when they call for the defunding of a police system that systemically kills them more than white people.

The police respond, or don’t respond, to whatever calls are deemed an emergency. The word “emergency”, in common human terms would mean, something terrible is going to happen if you aren’t helped or do something to change the current situation.

Here’s my, real-life, personal story of an emergency. Which is nothing compared to being shot 8 times in my bed like Breonna Taylor or being asphyxiated in broad daylight like George Floyd was. Those, among a disgusting number of more instances like them. have and continue to be the true emergency.

My experience went something like this: I was biking, someone opened a car door, I hit the pavement, ambulance, hospital. A situation like this, according to the hospital staff, needed to be reported. The nurses told me to call the cops straight away and file my statement when I got home, because the cops had not shown up to the scene.

What I’m getting at here is that in order for me to have a case, in order for my words to ring valid, they had to be written down by a police officer and submitted into their division’s system. What I’m really trying to say is that, in itself, is not right.

Even though many people walked by and a couple even called an ambulance for me, the ambulance driver nor the paramedics were equipped to take down a statement. So it was like my accident never happened. My physical injuries were not proof enough.

Which begs the question, why is it that cops are the only people who can keep track of accidents, injuries and deaths? How do we know that their eyes are unbiased, that their reports even hold true?

In a much larger context: how was the video evidence of officer Derek Chauvin not budging his knee for 8 minutes while multiple people around him called out for him to him to stop killing George Floyd not enough evidence to show that he was murdering Floyd?

The sheer fact that a police statement is held in higher regard than any other citizens within the legal system, is (for lack of a better word) bullshit.

Why? Well – Floyd’s death nearly getting off with Chauvin simply being fired and not even tried before the whole world lit on fire is just one very, damn, good example.

Daddy changed the world': George Floyd's six-year-old daughter ...

Here is the underlying issue here. The police can willy-nilly report or not report whatever they so choose. No seriously, they really do.

I know that these are only two examples and they both come from social media feeds. But these are first-hand accounts of how the policing system works. One from a former Ontario cop and the other from a criminal defense lawyer in Texas. We get both sides of the spectrum.

These sorts of stories so often get lost while the mainstream media emphasizes its coverage on crime, politics and everything else terrible going on in the world. If that didn’t pique your interest, here’s CBC’s take on how complicated this can really get.

Here’s how a case could be handled. When the ambulance show up for a 911 emergency, they are also required to file an official report which is saved in your hospital file. Ambulance drivers could be trained to take witness accounts at the scene of a crime and to then follow-up with the injured person at the hospital or their home later. This would require a separate department or some extra training for ambulance drivers and medics but it would be an efficient and effective system.

I’m just being creative here, but what I’m trying to show is that there are a myriad of ways that people can get justice, report crime and handle escalating situations without the help of the police. Because more often than not, they aren’t really all that helpful.

Elijah McClain’s story. Someone sees “a suspicious person in a mask, waving their hands in the air.” First thing that would need to be established is: does this require a mental health wellness check or does it require a bunch of guys with guns? Perhaps first, we would need to confirm whether the suspect, does indeed have a weapon. In order to do that, we could send an unarmed mediation and intervention team first to confirm whether or not this person is dangerous.

The story would have ended right there. Elijah would have been recognized for what he was, a gentle and kind person with an anemic condition that was trying to stay warm. There are other systems out there. We just need to put on our thinking hats as a collective society.

We also need to listen to our BIPOC community when they tell us they are being murdered in broad daylight for no reason.

Not just in the USA, in Canada as well, and in many other countries around the world.

According to the annual report of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) published in Feb. 2020, there is a recurring problem of discrimination against Muslims, Jews, Roma people and persons of color within the Council’s 47 member states. The ECRI emphasizes the growing influence of ultra-nationalist and xenophobic politics in Europe, resulting in a sharp increase in a discourse rooted in bigotry and intolerance.

It’s time for a big shift in the way we look at things. Especially things that involve the police. There are alternatives to the system that we have, but these changes aren’t going to happen overnight.

If you agree that it’s time to defund the police, it’s time to start speaking up about it. This is a deep-rooted system that needs to be completely gutted and re-hauled. Imagine a world where community service centres, affordable housing and mental health services were funded just as heavily as the police. Imagine that these institutions either individually or collectively and had teams that would respond to calls for mental health checks, drug and alcohol overdose, domestic disputes, and the likes. Imagine our healthcare included a reporting system that could be used legally in court disputes regarding injuries and deaths. Imagine a world where traffic police were stripped of their guns.

The cops have shown us over and over again that no matter how much money we throw at them, they are unable to train themselves to deescalate situations without resorting to unnecessary violence and murder.

We saw it in the USA with George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, Aura Rosser, Stephon Clark, Botham Jean, Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, Michelle Cusseaux, Trayvon MartinTamir RiceMichael BrownEric Garner, Sean Monterrosa, Jamel Floyd, Ezell Ford, Tanisha Anderson, Natasha McKenna, Walter Scott, Bettie Jones, Eric ReasonDominique Clayton and so many more.

The rate at which black Americans are killed by police is more than twice as ...

In Canada we absolutely cannot absolve ourselves in the names of Regis Korchinski-Paquet, Jason Collins, Eishia Hudson, D’Andre Campbell Randy Cochrane, Sean Thompson, Machuar Madut, Greg Ritchie, Chad Williams, Jaskamal Singh Lail, Nicholas Gibbs, Olando Brown, Josephine Pelletier, Brydon Whitstone, Pierre Coriolan, Abdirahman Abdi, Bony Jean-Pierre, Kwasi Skene-Peters, Andrew Loku, Abdurahman Ibrahim Hassan, René Gallant, Marc Ekamba-Boekwa, Phuong Na (Tony) Du, Jermaine Carby, Nicholas Thorne-Belance, Alain Magloire, Ian Pryce and Sammy Yatim.

And countless others. So many others who lost their lives for no reason that have not been covered by the media, witnessed by common humanity and will never be shown the justice they deserve. I ask you to stand with them and re-evaluate your outlook on policing and how it impacts your country.

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