Would you like there to be a law requiring the police to archive video footage of everything they do while on duty?
What a timely question!
Yes. Absolutely. Without a doubt.
Now, I’m not one to look at recent events and jump on board with the thought that all cops are corrupt. I don’t think that at all. In fact, I’m just optimistic enough to believe that the majority of men and women who enter law enforcement do so with the desire and intention to make their towns or cities better places for everyone to live in.
That said, I also know that people, in general, are just no damn good. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… we are all capable of doing incredible good and we are all capable of doing incredible evil.
That archive video footage that, these days, should be coming from body cameras worn by every police officer? That should exist to keep our protectors honest. Those cameras should not have an on/off switch that is accessible by the officers wearing them. It should be automatically turned on when the officer goes on duty. It should record everything from traffic stops to coffee breaks to arrests made to paperwork completion.
Does that mean I want to watch every police officer’s recorded footage from every shift they work? No… But wouldn’t it be a good thing for there to be a complete record of everything that goes on? Is that not something that can be submitted as evidence in a court of law? And I’m not just talking about holding our cops accountable. I’m also talking about legitimate criminal cases where there’s a question of someone’s eyewitness account. If there’s video and audio of the event, it’s kind of hard to dispute it, right?
But that’s just me. I know some would argue that constant surveillance violates the rights of… I don’t know… someone, I’m sure. But I think we’ve seen plenty of reasons why body cameras should be a non-negotiable part of the uniform.
But what you think? Where do you stand the body camera issue? Let me know down in the comments!
*The Question of the Week can be found in The Book of Questions by Gregory Stock, Ph.D.