It is also true that many police officers are fine, brave, upstanding individuals honestly trying to make their communities better places to live and work. The true story of Frank Serpico is a perfect example of both sides of that coin.
Police Are an Isolated Community
SWAT Spells Bad
Watts Riots and the Hub pawnshop shootout in San Diego, both in 1965. While these elite squads were initially designed for crowd control and heavily armed opponents, over time uses of SWAT began to blur. It was like, why have an expensive Maserati if your not driving it to the Starbucks. SWAT was designed as a squad that might be need once every few years. Today, SWAT is being used when it is not needed and is, literally, overkill. There are 4.5 SWAT raids every day. SWAT is even being called out for no-knock raids to serve misdemeanor warrants. I'd also like to compare the SWAT officer above to this ISIS terrorist.
US Police Are Death Magnets
|The 2012 Empire State Building shooting saw Jeffrey Johnson shoot one person. Two NYPD cops wildly fired 16 bullets killing Johnson and injuring nine innocent citizens.|
That doesn't count deaths in custody, which is a stat the Feds do keep. In 2011, 4,238 American prisoners died in custody. In the UK the number is 223, 33 died in police custody and 190 in prison custody. For reference, the US has 5.5 times the population of the England and Wales.
A lot of this has to do with the American gun culture. There are over 300 million guns in the US; there are less than 4 million guns in England and Wales. Since 1995, 34 British police officers died in the line of duty, six were shot. In the US for the same period, approximately 1,500 police officers died in the line of duty with 628 shot to death.
In 2011, there were 640 murders in the Britain, only 44 killers used guns. In the same period in the US there were 12,664 murders; 8,583 used firearms.
- While the United States is a violent country its murder rate (4.7 per 100,000) is less than the global average (6.3) and half the murder rate in Russia (9.2). It is the highest murder rate of any industrialized nation, second place is Taiwan (3.0). The United Kingdom has a murder rate of only 1.0 per 100,000.
- American police die in the line of duty at a rate eight times more frequent than UK police. They are shot at a rate twenty times more frequently.
- However, American police kill citizens at a rate fifty times more frequently than in the UK.