Robocops – Shannon in Kansas City

I think it’s time for the U.S. to invest in technology to make robotic police officers.  In the 80s and 90s there was a movie franchise called Robocop that was very popular.  At the time it seemed far fetched and a science fiction fantasy but I think that in the near future robotic law enforcement could and should become a reality.

We interact with machines so much that we take it for granted.  Most of us use ATM machines and if you call a business like an insurance or credit card company you will be assisted by a machine before you encounter a human being.  Many industries employ the help of robots to make themselves more efficient and cost effective.

I feel that robotic police officers would be an asset to the United States because I hear of a police misconduct or shooting every other month if not more.  Citizens have protested, rioted and the Attorney General has gotten involved to make police officers more accountable for their actions but nothing has improved the situation.  I do not accept that police violence and killing should be the norm for American citizens.

Police violence becomes a problem for all of us because the officers are often not prosecuted of any crime and when they are they are rarely convicted.  But the victim or their family usually sues the city and wins millions.  The taxpayers pay for police misconduct, not the officers or the police department themselves.

I can remember well publicized incidents of police brutality and police killing as far back as the 1980s.  When I was growing up near Detroit the Malice Green murder was big news.  When I was a teenager I vividly recall the Rodney King beating and the L.A. riots.  While I was a young adult Amadou Diallo was murdered on the East coast.  In recent years these types of stories have become common place because of cell phone technology and social media.  This issue has been with me my entire life and I am sick of it.

Most of the victims of police violence that I’ve learned about are Black.  But Black people are only about 13% of the United States population.  It is very difficult to not suspect the police of being deeply racist when you consider the relationship that American has had with African Americans.  The U.S. has always been violent and callous towards Black people.  America has always felt the need to control the Africans within its borders.

The police rarely seem contrite in these situations.  They didn’t even show remorse when ten year old Tamir Rice was killed for playing with a toy gun at a public park.  They only justified what happened.  Police departments often make themselves out to be victims when they shoot and kill citizens.  If someone speaks out against them they threaten some type of work stoppage and make a statement about how officers are entitled and deserving of respect.

There is no doubt that police work is dangerous.  There is no doubt that law enforcement is necessary.  So why not take some of the burden from flesh and blood human beings and use nuts and bolts machines to take care of traffic violations or even city patrols?  Police officers will be safer and citizens will be treated more objectively.

No one can accuse an officer of racism if the officer is a machine.  It would be simple for a camera to clock cars as they speed by or check license plates for expired stickers.  The person in violation of the law will receive a ticket in the mail.  It’s happened to me.

If robots performed the more menial tasks such as writing tickets that would give officers more time to investigate and prevent crimes.  Everyone would win.  Citizens will have a more efficient police force.  The police would be safer.  Law enforcement would be more objective.  Robotic police officers would pay for themselves because of the decrease in lawsuits to the police departments which citizens pay for with their tax dollars.  The lawmakers of this country should be progressive and begin to research how they can make robot technology work for law enforcement.

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/tech/news/robotics/2008-03-01-robots_N.htm

 

 

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