2) With the recent events in Ferguson, I would say there has been a massive disturbance of police authority.
4) Recently I was pulled over after dropping a friend off at her car in an apartment complex I had never been to before. I was pulled over for suspicion due to recent break-ins in the area. I was asked to step out of the car as a result of the cop having smelled a little weed. This was problematic because the only chemical substances I consume are legal— tobacco and the occasional alcoholic beverage (which I had not been drinking that night). I gladly watched the officer scour through my biblical mess of an automobile while discussing what graphic design means in today's world with his backup. was told that my cooperation was greatly appreciated and I would be helped by the officers with whatever was found in my car. When the first officer had seen his fair share of empty McDonald's bags and cigarette butts in my car, I was told that I was free to go and instructed to have a great rest of the night. The officer even took the time to inform me that my father had been trying to call me on my phone during the duration of the search. However, I firmly believe that if I were not a well spoken, white male, this situation would have gone far worse for me.
5) I am still conflicted about the Mike Brown incident. I simply don't know what to believe— I wasn't there. I believe in justice for all, but I also believe in skepticism. With the issue being so close to home, the details and accounts of the incident became incredibly blurry very quickly. What I do know is that Michael Brown was indubitably unarmed. However, I was particularly disturbed with chokehold killing of Eric Garner in New York. I have been offered money, and accepted it, on many occasions to spare a cigarette. Never once have I been physically in contact with and officer of the law as a result. Eric Garner however, lost his life as a direct result of a misdemeanor. These are people with families and reasons to wake up in the morning; they should be treated as such.
6) I think police might act out of fear. However, I believe fear is driven by racial stigmas in a law enforcement context. We have stigmas engrained in us that tell us blacks are scary and likely to harm us. It should be our duty to fight these stigmas at all costs. When you give a portion of society the privileges that whites have been given, it is unlikely they will find it easy to give up their privileges.
7) I am not surprised by this statistic. Law enforcement is a job. If someone can make their job easier without being held accountable, they will; this is part of the human condition. Departments should be audited and held accountable for these kinds of records. I find it disturbing that I am berated at my retail job for not acquiring enough e-mail addresses to exploit with advertisements, however police departments are failing to record reports that could ultimately lead to justice in a case that deals with the ending of someone's entire existence.
8) People are afraid to see bad things in figures in society who have been traditionally seen as heroes. However, it is easy to see bad in a man who belongs to a race that only recently acquired rights to drink from adequate water fountains. This is the conservative, christian way, we see things as we want to see them and can easily ignore facts in order to produce a conclusion that is desirable for us (I say we, because this mentality makes up a majority of our country's way of thinking).
9) This is a hard question. In my area, I would say 10 because I've never seen an officer do anything other than write tickets for parking and speeding. One officer at my former gas station job even disclosed that he sits on the side of the highway parked while playing Candy Crush. On a national scale i would say 5 out of 10.
10) I know a great deal of officers and I respect/appreciate them all.
11) Accountability is the answer.
12) Art. Change happens through art, whether the world will believe it or not. We need our good artists to produce work that changes how we think about these issues.
13) All of these factors play into the issue of police brutality. The human psyche is a vast, unpredictable entity which makes me hesitate to assign blame to one or even five of these factors.