📆 11 Oct 2021 | ⏱️ 4 minute read

Why I Don't Trust Police and Neither Should You

This writing only applies to cops in the United States. In other countries, the police culture may be better (or worse).

Why I Don’t Trust Police

I’ve had a police officer yell in my face after refusing to provide him my phone number. I was being completely calm and respectful. I don’t even normally carry a phone. Phones are addictive, distracting surveillance devices with non-free bootloaders, non-free modem operating systems and proprietary hardware. But that wasn’t any of his business. The same cop handcuffed me behind my back for no reason, then tried to bully and intimidate me by threatening a misdemeanor charge over a fender bender where nobody was hurt and I wasn’t even driving.

He then pretended to be my friend saying we got off on the wrong foot and lectured me about giving information to the police. I just agreed with him so he would leave me alone and because there was nothing to gain out of challenging him. After that, he reminded me how well-liked he was. This could’ve just been him boasting or a veiled threat. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt and say it was boasting.

Besides that instance, I’ve caught cops in outright lies before. Cops have put words in my mouth and twisted what I’ve said. I’ve witnessed cops misrepresent reality numerous times to extract information from people. They’ve harassed people I know and put undue stress on their families. They obtained a no-knock warrant to bust down the door of someone I know looking for someone else that didn’t even live there. Then they refused to repair the damage to the door and never apologized for it. Every time I’ve personally seen or heard someone report an incident to the police, the police either couldn’t help or didn’t care to. And finally, in every encounter with a police officer, even if I’m just walking in the park, I feel like I’m being treated as a potential criminal. Every conversation feels like an interrogation, like I’m always under suspicion. So those are my personal reasons for not trusting police.

Why You Shouldn’t Trust Police

Here’s a non-comprehensive list of 20 reasons you shouldn’t trust police either (in no particular order):

Rethinking the Role of Policing in Society

I do believe in the institution of policing. But in practice, perverse incentives lead to a toxic police culture and a society where people (rightfully) do not trust the police. We need major police reform here in America. Perhaps I’ll explore possible solutions in a future journal entry.