F**K THE POLICE

WRITTEN BY TAYO ADEBOYE

Police conduct or lack thereof has created much hatred towards law enforcement throughout the years. The words “F**k the police” even made famous through groups such as NWA and rap culture spread the ‘screw the Feds’ attitude. Well today I would like to explore this perspective.

I grew up in South East London, where it’s safe to say police are loathed more than they are loved. I was a legal case worker, mainly in criminal law, and I am a police station accredited legal representative. So in short; I’ve had more than my fair share of dealings with the police from both sides of the law.

The other day I was on my way to work and on the train I heard some youths say the usual ‘screw the police’ (they used much more colourful language). This made me think. Is this the attitude we want to pass down? Now let me be clear. I am no fan of the police, before I could understand why I didn’t like the institution I already knew I almost hated them. It took a lot of growing up to get rid of that poisonous mentality and I think that is the real problem. Many youths today will tell you they hate police; ask them why and all you get is an awkward silence. There’s nothing wrong with having animosity especially considering many of the travesties that the police are directly responsible for. The problem is a lot of people these days don’t have the knowledge that should come with this mentality. If your going to hate the police; at least do your research. The reason why I have strong negative feelings towards police is because of the lack of respect they show for the lives of ethnic minorities such as Stephen Lawrence, Mark Duggan, Carol Howard and Rashan Charles. Ask some of these youths who those names are and they’ll look at you blankly.

This screw the police mentality is poisonous and that’s from first hand experience. Ask some of these people what the police have done to them or their friends and family and they will tell you they’ve had no qualms with police. Yet you want to breed hatred and pass it to the next generation? Why not pass on knowledge and maybe, just maybe, they can be the change we all want to see. Music plays a big part in all our lives and the way we perceive things. I also feel it plays a big part in this dissemination of hatred. Please understand at the very least a lot of these rappers have good reason to dislike police; such as racial oppression.

Whether you agree with them or not, at the very least they can tell you why they hate police, the foundation of their beliefs are based on knowledge and first hand experience. It took me nearly 18 years before I gained that same knowledge. Let’s not forget some of these people who infect your mind with this are not exactly angels. Your screaming ‘F**k the police’ like you weren’t just caught selling guns; what were you expecting? A free ride to Hogwarts?

Finally; we can’t just focus on the negative because if that continues that’s all you will ever see! The negative! I have met some heroic police officers who do an outstanding job. The fact is police are an absolute necessity so how can we spend so much energy hating them? God forbid your house gets robbed, who you gonna call? The Ghostbusters? The point I’m trying to make is like many things in life, the institution of law enforcement is not perfect. I am still very sceptical of police and I can say with certainty I do not like them. These opinions of mine are based on the knowledge and experiences I’ve attained over the years. If you should form those same opinions having taken the time to do some research then fair enough. But, please do not pass on hatred without understanding; because that is simply ignorance.

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