Police shootings increase 2000% from GW Bush to Obama. Population growth requires delicate balancing act.
Every nation, society, organization, race, religion nook and cranny where the human race lives we can expect to find lawbreakers. As the U.S. population increases we can expect the number of crimes to increase too, likely in disproportion, but with increasing devastation to societal “norms.” President Reagan stated that “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.” On Sunday July 18, 2016 President Obama stated that “These are attacks on public servants, on the rule of law, and on civilized society, and they have to stop.” Reagan and Obama both laid the foundation that this is not a partisan issue and we clearly need to sort through the public demagoguery to put an end to violent killings of both civilians and police officers.
Police shootings of civilians increased by more than 2,000 percent after GW Bush’s Presidency (1989-1993) during the reign of the Obama Administration (2009 to date). Why? Based on public records, 124 police shootings occurred under President GW Bush compared to a record 2760 police shootings under President Obama. Before FDR was sworn into office some records reflect there were no police shootings as far back as President McKinley at the turn of the century. Up through President Carter no sitting President had more than 7 police shootings. President Nixon topped the list from FDR to Carter with 7 shootings. Under Reagan there were 17, Bush (Senior) 12, Clinton 50. For the record, see period 1900 through 2009: https://goo.gl/qjix2l. For the period 2009 to present see, including related year-by-year links: https://goo.gl/d7l9Ka The U.S. population increased from the turn of the century in 1900 through 2016 by 330% from about 76 million to about 323 million people projected in 2016.
America was founded upon civil unrest with the Crown. Our nation has a track record of overcoming adversity as proven by the results stemming from our historical roller coaster from the Civil War to the Vietnam conflict and challenges to our government at the time. What is different since Vietnam or earlier? The answer is not black and white and by no means does a wrongful killing of a civilian by a rogue police officer justify civilian shootings, open season style, on the very officers charged to protect us. The U.S. is one of the most civilized nations with one of the most honorable public servants in law. We must not let the public dialogue during a Presidential election year make this issue an “us” versus “them” issue. We are all Americans and most of us place a high importance on maintaining a civilized society with respect for one another, people of all races, religions or orientation.
A few facts. The vast majority of the 990 civilians killed by police officers in 2016 through July have been white male, more than any other race and gender. See: https://goo.gl/MISIhI The public debate suggests that the percent of race killed is the issue rather than the numbers: A higher percentage of black citizens have been killed compared to the percentage of white civilians. That is true.
You will find more statistics at Statista
Compare that the number of police officers killed by white v. black civilians (44 v. 43%) is a near dead heat according to the Washington Post. See: https://goo.gl/ETXYgi Officers killed in the line of duty is not a new phenomenon but statistically it may be getting out of whack. Since 1960 through 2015 the number of officers who died in the line of duty hit a low of 124 in 2015, peaked in 1974 with 280 killing just before the Vietnam war ended in 1975 and is tracking in 2016 on an accelerated basis with a death toll to-date of 66.See: https://www.odmp.org/search/year
You will find more statistics at Statista
Does the U.S. population factor into public discourse? I would submit yes. From one perspective the caucasian and black populations compared to the total combination of all other races showed the lowest, but steady, percentage growth since the Presidency of John F. Kennedy (1961-1963) through 2016. During the same time the total population increased from about 188 million U.S. Citizens to an estimated 323 million. See Census records https://goo.gl/56TcFC and presidential stats https://goo.gl/Ly571o The sheer volume of new citizens entering the U.S. is rapidly bring new “people” rather than simply “new races” to America. Every race and religion has “bad apples” that disregard the values of civilized society that both Reagan and Obama spoke to . Police officers are not immune either from having a few “bad apples” notwithstanding the vast majority are fantastic role models. How should we vet our police officers? What ratio of police officers to population base is the right, affordable size? See: http://goo.gl/CUfCyD How should we manage our immigration policies as a country? The fact is the U.S. is a very different country in 2016 than it was when FDR was in power having mushroomed from 137 million to 323 million citizens. The game has changed. Our collective strategy and resolve must change too. A lot more people must collaborate to reach a consensus today than President McKinley had to worry about in 1900!