The tragedy of Ferguson has certainly generated a national conversation about race, about the over-militarization of local police departments, about the excessive use of force and about the prosecutor's abuse of the notoriously unfair Grand Jury system.
As the police adviser to the United Nations, I believe that every serious discussion about the relationship between the society and the policing model that a society chooses for itself needs to be informed by these guiding principles.
For an inside perspective, I turned to Rick Smith, the CEO and co-founder of Taser International - the leading provider of Tasers, cameras and evidence archival software for police departments.
When the seemingly inevitable failure to indict in the Garner case was made public yesterday, I sat at my desk at the firm where I work, paralyzed. I could no longer truly concentrate on the tasks before me. I needed to talk or plan or organize. I needed to take action. But I couldn't.
It's America and Mother Earth that cannot breathe, not only Eric Garner. Mother Earth is in a chokehold!
1) The grand estate began to smolder as the cleansing commenced. Raging fires, whose embers fade more tragically than some, seethe just beneath the...
by listen, I don't mean waiting impatiently for the other person to stop so I can have my say. I don't mean listening through the filter of every belief I've ever held. I mean listening that is deep, openhearted, and fully attentive, that strives to experience the other person as she is
There are many fine officers who are careful and restrained in their use of force, but as long as the system protects those who cross the line, even in a case where the killing was filmed and the death was ruled by the coroner to be a homicide, public anger and distrust toward law enforcement will only grow.
One of the marks of privilege and power is the ability to ignore the cries and pain of those who are oppressed. This is something that happens everyday.
There's no feigned shock. No forced surprise or mild disappointment. Just thick air. Deafening silence. And the weight of generations of false hope of equality sitting on my chest, on my shoulders, preventing me from breathing.
Being African-American in America means knowing the country was not made for you. I mean this literally, not figuratively.
These critical moments offer us an opportunity to consider how silence within privileged communities, such as the ones at PWIs (Predominately White Institutions), perpetuates the systemic violence we see in our world.
It's getting harder by the day to tell young people that we live in a nation that values freedom and which is governed by the rule of law without feeling like a teller of tall tales.
Tech is being used to highlight disturbing police behavior, but can it be used preventatively?
The bottom line for me as a teacher, a teacher educator, as a social justice activist, as a white man, and as a human being is this. Is it possible to get whites, especially white teachers to understand or empathize with conditions faced by inner city blacks and Latinos, and if it is, how do we do it?
In the middle of this, Burlington Police Chief Mike Schirling asked a critical question: What if we built this ourselves, based on our own needs and experience?