Rash solutions for police brutality cases will not work

The police shooting of unarmed black teen Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. has brought about speculation as to how the country should prevent these types of incidents.

Officer Darren Wilson was named as the shooter on Aug. 15 and has faced no disciplinary action as of yet.

People want to see their law enforcement take action and hold themselves responsible for this tragic event. Some want the local police department to hire more black officers, while others want to see policemen wearing body cameras — though these are merely Band-Aid solutions.

Hiring more black officers creates the notion that this is a black problem. This is an American problem, and it is insulting that this is one of the solutions being pitched.

According to Politifact.com and Ferguson’s QuickFacts profile from the U.S. Census Bureau, Ferguson has a population that is 67 percent black. Their police force, however, has only three black officers compared to its 50 white officers. Though this difference is alarming, increasing the amount of black policemen will not eradicate the issue of police brutality. It will simply redirect it.

Sure, having more black policemen will help calm the racial tensions between the citizens of Ferguson, but that does not remove the fact that police brutality is still an issue. After all, who is to say the black policemen will not target the white people of Ferguson?

A more effective, but still flimsy solution that has been pitched is the requirement of body cameras on all police officers. 

Jay Stanley, the senior policy analyst of the American Civil Liberties Union, believes that body cameras are a type of technology that have “a very real potential to serve as a check and balance on police power.” This, in all honesty, is very true.

Having police wear body cameras makes it easier to serve justice to civilians who fall victim to police brutality. But the fight is not against the justice system. It is against the violence between police and civilians. Having the cameras will serve to help achieve justice speedily, but it does not prevent police brutality.

While the body cameras should definitely be implemented to protect police and civilians, people must also realize that cameras will not fix the problem from its root. The solution is increased police training on the appropriate use of force.

It is comforting to know that there are people who are deliberating legitimate ideas to prevent this tragedy from replaying. The ideas to use body cameras and add more black officers are only partial solutions that belittle Brown’s death and the justice being sought.  

America can do better. This is a chance for the nation to prove how civilized it is.