IllinoisHumanities

 

The criminal system is a system put in place to protect individuals and create a better and safer environment for them to live in. Their main priority is to “serve and protect the people.” And that’s what they have done, for decades. Although, the criminal system seems to have gone rouge. Many cases have emerged, making the ones who are meant to “serve and protect” us seem like criminals themselves.

Recently, over the past few years, videos and news reports have been going around, informing the public of innocent people of color being shot dead by police. In all these cases, the police claim that they believed the victim was armed, only to later realize they weren’t. Videos have surfaced, taken by cameras installed in police cars, showing victims following procedures, remaining calm, and keeping their hands in plain sight at all times, only to be confronted with violence. Given the fact that it is almost always with people of color, it raises a few eyebrows and concerns. They are meant to catch criminals, not falsely accuse normal people. Are we really all safe in the hands of the criminal system?

Another thing that can be addressed is the fact that there have been incidents where people of color have been pulled over and racially profiled. Recordings have gone around the internet of different individuals being pulled over by Caucasian cops, for invalid reasons, only to be met by hostile behavior, violence, and disrespect. On one occasion, an African American man was pulled over, and when he asked why, the officer proceeded to ask for his ID and license. When he failed to comply and once again asked for a reason behind him being pulled over, the officer forcefully tried to get him out of the vehicle. Once again making us wonder if we are, in fact, safe at the hands of the criminal system, who fail to catch actual criminals.

Now, from personal experience, I have close ties with someone who used to be in jail. Only being there for three months, I was informed that individuals in there are treated poorly. Some of the guards, whose job is to make sure that everyone is kept in line, treat the inmates like animals. Even though most of them are in there for good reason, some aren’t. And even then, people are still people, and deserve to be treated as such.

To finish off, I believe that the criminal justice system has gone corrupt. They need to be more careful who they let work for them and who they choose to protect us. They also need to be more reliable and vigilant when accusing people. As hard as it may be for them to hear, they are not always right.