Biased, militarized policing. The police state. Police corruption. Police brutality. Rebuilding trust in law enforcement. These have been serious topics of discussion in our communities lately, and it's no wonder. Just as I stepped out of the office last week after reading one of the latest news stories about yet another one of our nation's police scandals, I watched as a Denver Police Department officer turned on his emergency lights on his cruiser and backed up traffic to pull across a busy street and park on a lawn. He then got out of his vehicle swinging his baton in the air aggressively as he approached a homeless man sitting on a bench before holstering the weapon. He approached the man, asked him his name, told him to move along and nothing more - didn't check his ID, nothing. Clearly, it wasn't an important stop, but just an opportunity to badger a man down on his luck with no home. Just a chance to show how tough he was - a guy that probably got bullied in school now bullying others with his new-found authority. Disgusting. Another one of the bad ones.
There are so many good law enforcement officers out there, and yet it only takes a few bad ones to give the entire community of public servants a bad name.
And then there are the statistics - they speak for themselves. The topic of this cartoon, racially biased policing has been proven by study after study over the last several decades - moreover, by the many tragic anecdotes flashing across our television screens recently - to be a serious ongoing epidemic in America. It's time for it to stop.
This cartoon was printed in the June 5, 2015, edition of The Colorado Statesman. To subscribe to The Statesman and become a member of Colorado's premier journal for political news coverage, debate forum and exclusive commentary, click here.