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What's missing from this conversation is an examination of what we in Portland are doing vs what police bureaus in other cities are doing. How do the rates of fatal police shootings in Portland compare to other cities with similar demographics to Portland? This is in no way to imply that each and every individual fatal police shooting isn't something to investigate and be concerned about - it is. But we clearly aren't the first city who's police officers are interacting with citizens with mental illness, dealing with racial profiling, and "working" with the homeless...
Frankly, I'm horrified and angry about the fact that we keep focusing on the small details - specifics about each case, time, weapons, who said what, tazer politics, etc. - and completely ignoring the bigger picture. How are these cases all connected??? What kind of additional trainings to our police officers need to prevent them from feeling that lethal force is the right way 'handle' people in our community who are non-white, mentally ill, and/or homeless. The fact that the populations that the victims continually involved in these shootings by in large represent the most marginalized people in our community needs to be addressed.
This is an issue of power, this is an issue of ignorance, this is an issue of fear.
posted 3 years, 2 months ago
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