I hope there is no serious doubt that I personally am doing all that it is possible for one engaged citizen to do to try to improve the relationship between police and citizenry in my community and within the US generally by my advocacy for citizen design of policing [citizenpolicing.com].
But, on this one year anniversary of the shooting of #MichaelBrown, I find myself utterly perplexed by the incident making headlines this morning, in relation to which a video has been released (#ChristianTaylor).
If this incident, and frankly, so many others, were to be the subject of any process flowing from citizen design of policing, it is my opinion that citizen participants would find themselves facing a very difficult yet pertinent question:
Precisely what rules of engagement do we design for our law enforcers when they are faced with an apparent lawbreaker who allegedly refuses to desist, will not submit to detention and seeks to flee the scene?
Do we instruct our law enforcers to detain at all cost? Or do we design a rule that states that a potential lawbreaker be allowed to go free?
A few side issues. Is anyone seriously suggesting this incident represents profiling or racial bias?
Save for the question of detention -vs- release, is anyone suggesting that the arrival of two police officers equates to an inappropriate display of law enforcement presence?
I say again, this incident just leaves me baffled. Not least because, and not for the first time, the response portrayed in the media seems to bear no relation to facts or resolution, but rather, more to arch political motivation.