Remember, it seems like only a year or so ago when the media and the politicians thought that the solution to police violence were dash-cams and body-cams.
It has become clear here in Chicago that there is not a technological answer to the issue of police brutality.
Not if the mayor, the state’s attorney, the police superintendent and the Fraternal Order of Police conspire to lock that video tape up for a year and refuse to release it.
Now there is news that there is another video from a police killing that took place even before the shooting of Laquan McDonald. Ronald Johnson was killed while running away from police. The police said he had a gun. It seems the video shows something quite different. The city, State’s Attorney Alvarez and the police refuse to hand the video over.
Then there is the 83 minutes of video from a surveillance camera at a Burger King that were erased by the police. The camera was recording what happened on the street when Laquan McDonald was shot sixteen times by officer Jason Van Dyke.
Since yesterday’s firing of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy we keep hearing about the need to change the culture of the CPD.
Changing the culture sounds very benign when we are talking about dead Black men and women who have been killed by the CPD. Chicago holds the record for the most police killings in the country and fourth highest per-capita.
Dash-cams and body-cams haven’t stopped the killing. This is not a problem that can be solved by technology alone.
And I don’t know about any culture change. That sounds like some more diversity training workshops.
If you are someone who jumps out of a police car and fires sixteen bullets in 13 seconds at a seventeen year old Black kid who is on the ground after the second shot, I don’t believe diversity training is the answer either.
I lean more towards the current call for a real independent civilian review board – not appointed by the Mayor – to replace the do-nothing not-really-Independent Civilian Review Authority we have now.