Impacts of Excessive Force on Communities
Simple observations can shine light on the many negative impacts of excessive force in DC. Individuals who experience MPD excessive force first hand suffer physical and emotional distress that could impact their wellbeing long term. Individuals have died from interaction with MPD. This tragic injustice spreads to their families, friends, and communities. Knowing someone who died or was injured by MPD in any way causes fear and distrust towards those charged with protecting us. That fear can justifiably lead to rage. MPD’s actions lead to a disconnect with communities they are in charge of protecting. In response, some communities rise up and protest these violent crimes and demand justice, like DC Protests.
Raja Staggers-Hakim from the Department of Health Science, College of Health Professions, Sacred Heart University, Fairfield, Connecticut conducted a research study to explore the impact of national police brutality cases and extrajudicial killings on the social development, mental health, and overall well-being of young African American males. Between 2005 and 2012 Black boys and men were brutally killed by police officers three times as often as Whites. It is very clear that Black and Brown communities endure most of the Constitutional Rights violations due to the systemic racism that plagues MPD.Therefore it is important to understand the impact excessive force has on these communities. Staggers-Hakim concluded that even though the Black boys she surveyed were not from areas that had reported officer-involved murders, they were still extremely traumatized. These boys stated they were fearful when they see police officers, they are afraid they will not make it home, they try to ensure if an officer sees them they do not make sudden movements or gestures. This just further exemplifies the fear that is spread throughout communities with MPD or any law enforcement agency violates the rights of citizens.
The purpose of the police is to prevent crime and keep citizens safe. MPD does nothing of the sort. MPD terrorizes DC citizens with fear tactics and violence. Children lose their parents, are traumatized and forced to be around officers in schools, therefore impacting their academic engagement and success and eventually impacting their long term success. The current state of MPD only results in violence and trauma.