Do cops deserve to get the benefit of the doubt (or the opposite)?

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#1
I have seen many forums talking about how all cops are evil. In almost all of those threads someone also defends them by saying they deserve the benefit of the doubt. Why is it that we are so polarized on this issue? It seems like a reasonable person would look at what an individual did, or a pattern of abuse in a certain jurisdiction, and make a just analysis of what happened and what should be done about it. I do not hear anyone advocating a moderate approach to police forces. Should we be moderate?
 
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#2
Also depends on what country we are talking about here. You have a Swedish flag bobbing about so as you probably know, in the nordic countries the police are (or at least were a few years ago) well respected. And that is partly because they also treat the people with respect. And rarely do you have any incidents.

Then there are countries where the police get in trouble on the streets on a daily basis. And I guess this is where all the evil talk comes from since it can quickly end up in the whole "them against us" mentality on both sides.
 
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#3
The founding fathers of our nation, for good reason, had deep reservations about police forces and built into our systems numerous safeguards in an attempt to prevent the abuses they had seen during colonial times. By the 1960s the long struggle to see those safeguards effectively in place became a genuine subject of judicial and legislative action,with positive results. However, rising reaction from radicals, especially on the "right" (or Reich) wing has brought this to the main-stream attention again. Although dark-skinned people are the most obvious victims of those who abuse the position of police officer, All people are subject to abuse by thugs disgracing the uniform (or badge). I have the greatest of respect for the people who serve honorably as law enforcement officers, and utter contempt for those who serve dishonorably.

When I was 3 years old (about 1950) I sat on the front porch of my house with my Mother and older brother while a thug whom my father had arrested while that man showed us the gun he swore he was going to kill my Father with. He failed and served 15 years at Leavanworth.
 

happyfun88

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#4
If they had a good track record I would say yes. The track record for police is atrocious, as soon as one officer has been found to be corrupt you can no longer lay blanket statements saying all of these people should get the benefit of the doubt. Now I might feel different if police were trained and intelligent. Maybe having a doctorate in criminal law or criminal psychology or something of that nature. They should be elite public servants, and paid as such.
High school dropouts that have the power to kill a citizen if they deem it a necessity is laughable.
 
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#5
While the role of a policeman can be very demanding and I think its more of a vocation than just a job that people decide to do. Well, it SHOULD be a vocation, but I do feel now that a lot of people join just for the sake of wearing a uniform and a badge and to have some authority over others.
There's been many news stories and videos that have shown acts of random violence against the people they are supposed to protect, depending on the country, I do think there's a massive training issue that isn't being addressed.
 
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#6
The police are not all evil. Yes, you have some cops who have the power and authority they get that goes straight to their head. However, at the same time you have some that have been around for a while and will keep people in mind and take factors into consideration.

This is kind of like the priest sexual abuse scandal that rocked the Catholic church. You had some priest who were abusers and gave the church a black eye. However, you had the priest who were great representatives of Christ on Earth and still had the black eye because of the abuse scandal.
 
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#7
People can be divided into two groups - those who have had a bad experience with the police and those who have either had no contact with police at all or those who have only experienced positive interactions with officers. So it's no surprise that views can be so polarized.

Personally, I think it's a case of bad apples. It only takes one to taint the whole box.
 
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#8
Police officers take an oath to uphold the law of the land which they serve and so it is natural that they will always get the benefit of the doubt even in a court of law. If a case develops where the word of the police is questioned by the authorities then I think it will be bad more police morale.
 
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#9
The police are not all evil. Yes, you have some cops who have the power and authority they get that goes straight to their head. However, at the same time you have some that have been around for a while and will keep people in mind and take factors into consideration.

This is kind of like the priest sexual abuse scandal that rocked the Catholic church. You had some priest who were abusers and gave the church a black eye. However, you had the priest who were great representatives of Christ on Earth and still had the black eye because of the abuse scandal.
The sexual abuse scandal in the Roman church is largely due to a system that attracts sexual deviants to the priesthood (as well as people who aren't). There is much about the structure of the average police force in most countries that attracts a fair number of people who are prone to abuse of power. There are also many who have the right motives. As long as we tolerate the attitudes of civilians who think that a repression and prejudice is O.K., we will continue to have corrupt and evil members of our police.
Any time a group within society wants another group repressed we are likely to have corrupt police. I can remember "Jim Crow" society, and I know that white people who weren't a part of the elite fared little better than non-whites. Bad police breed crime by creating hate.
 
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#10
That makes me realize the things cops are doing in my place. Just last year, a cop brought his short rifle on a bar wearing civilian and on law, that is illegal. He got drunk and he shot the bar manager. CCTV footage was taken though the case is still ongoing.. why is that? he killed a life yet the process is still ongoing. In my country, death penalty is removed. Hoping for justice and peace.
 
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#11
Look, aren't we too old to generalize things? Only kids do that. To say that all cops are evil is like saying all apples taste good and an apple tree does not generate a single defective fruit. When there are corrupt and violent policemen, you can charge the blame to the system and the people behind the system. What kind of system would allow corruption and violence, anyway? What are the superiors doing, anyway? Why were such corrupt and violent personalities admitted into the police force? That such characters got in only means one thing... those in charge of recruiting police forces are not doing their job well.
 
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#12
Given the recent backlash, cops should be given the benefit of the doubt. The cases where they have been accused to using excessive force was when they were chasing suspects. If you are going to commit a criminal act, then you should expect some force if you try to escape.

It's not a perfect system and there are corrupt cops that take bribes and withhold evidence, but there are safeguards even though Internal Affairs isn't always reliable, but all they can do is weed out the bad eggs.
 
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#13
I do think cops deserve the benefit if the doubt in most cases. That doesn't mean we shoukd hold them to high standards or hold them accountable when they screw up. But you have to factor in what a stressful challenging job they have when evaluating the job they are doing.
 
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#14
They are give. Certain privileges and responsibiliteis, and in return they are held to a higher standard. Mistakes are going to happen, they're human. But when the number of mistakes gets so high they obviously need to be more careful and learn from other people's mistakes. That means they should not get the benefit of the doubt.
 
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