Higher penalties may help

I have been thinking about how to analyze the root cause of police killing people during an arrest. The current thinking that the police are to blame.

So I thought it would help if we used an analogy that would take the politics out of the process. What would happen if I put water in the fuel tank of my car? The car would start and run until the water got into the fuel injection and then it would stop. The wheels stop turning so they are to blame for the car stopping. Is that reasonable? The wheels stopped because the transmission failed to transmit power to the wheels. So the transmission is to blame for the car stopping. Is that reasonable? The transmission failed because the engine failed to deliver power to the transmission. So the engine must be to blame. Is that reasonable?

But the real reason for the car stopping is the failure to use the proper fuel for the car. I put water in the fuel tank. It is my fault.

Now, let’s look at the situation dealing with police killing a suspect during an arrest.

My observation is that in each case the suspect resisted arrest in some significant manner. Some used guns, some used knives, and some used significant physical force. Now, is the bullet to blame? Sounds like the story of the wheels. Is the gun to blame? Sounds like the story of the transmission. Is the policeman to blame for defending himself or others against threatening force? Sounds like the story of the engine. Is the suspect to blame for resisting arrest by using threatening force against the policeman who is just doing his job of arresting a suspect?

Now, let’s increase the penalty for resisting arrest to discourage people from trying to resist arrest. I believe that will be much more effective than defunding the police, and more effective than restricting law-abiding citizens from purchasing guns, or placing more limits on police that are carrying out the responsibility the lawmakers gave them. Let’s use some common sense in determining what action to take in this situation.

Wendell W. Brown


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