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Woman & Doctor
Police & Law Enforcement

It is a rather overlooked irony that Hawai'i residents that are employed as law enforcers, are mired in so many controversies that involve them breaking and or violating the law. Being that that is the case, shouldn't we do something about it?

Pro change and complete reform, not anti Law Enforcement.

     Why is it that when we talk about government corruption, everyone nods their heads in acknowledgement. Then, when one shifts the subject and talks about police corruption, suddenly the air gets very still?


     I love humanity. It is the reason why I am choosing to engage into controversial political subjects in lieu of a normal quiet life. But the fact remains, if we are to do something about our corrupt government, regular people need to stand up and speak the truth. The same goes for law enforcement.


     I have great respect for those that wear a badge. The things is, with that badge comes enormous responsibility. As a law enforcer, first and foremost you must be the example. The only way to do that is to obey the law, to follow it to the letter as you go about your duties, and when the law becomes destructive or harmful to the people you are supposed to protect, you must either question or stand down from enforcement until that particular issue is addressed. This isn't a matter of policy, it is a matter common sense and decency, not to mention of the responsibility to do what is morally right.


     Everyone that wears a badge has different strengths and weaknesses. That will make your average law enforcer resilient or susceptible to the corruption that can happen in their heart or mind because of the power of the badge.


     Does that mean they get a blanket pass when they do wrong?


     Does that mean they get special immunity from scrutiny or accountability?

     Here in Hawai'i it is one controversy after another. And instead of adopting a policy of transparency and accountability, in order to maintain the public trust, secrecy, subversion and cover ups are the standard. At what point is enough, enough? I understand that law enforcers are human and the classic argument is that they are just doing their jobs. I understand that it is a tough job. Even so, you do not have the privileged position of saying you are just doing your job when what you do directly affects the lives of others and the trust that the residents of your communities and state have in you. The ramifications of that breach of trust are deep and can be severe.

     We must re-establish trust with each other and with our law enforcers. In light of that, changes must be made.

  • Retrain all law enforcement on how to serve the people and their communities. 


  • Increase the amount of training they receive in deescalation of force, non violent resolution, community relations, international law and basic human rights. 


  • Change the rules and standards for hiring law enforcement officers.


  • End needless SWAT raids, especially when serving search warrants. Reserve SWAT for last resort.


  • Transition to non-lethal weapons and tactics.


  • Increase the quality of recruits through more stringent screening, higher standards of applicants and higher standards of graduation from training.


  • Create absolute transparency of their records and behaviors to the public to help with accountability and trust. 


  • All police wrong doing that results in monetary awards shall come from their funding. No more forcing the public to pay for your mistakes.


  • Include regular psychological evaluations for all law enforcers, especially prior to hiring.


  • End internal unofficial policy: “the blue line.” 


  • Law Enforcers will be held to a higher standard when dealing and interacting with fellow residents. This includes on or off duty, while driving or even eating in public.


  • Dismiss all law enforcers that have any history of violence at work or at home.

     This isn't by any means a fully comprehensive list but it is a good start. The police in our state do a great many a job, from protecting our road workers to assisting motorists when they are in trouble and even in recovering stolen items. I want to help them. I want to improve their work atmosphere, to create an atmosphere of trust and accountability, I want to foster communication and better training. Being a police officer is tough work and I believe that by making some fundamental changes we can rebuild trust and simultaneously improve the moral and overall happiness of our law enforcers.

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