Should the Government Defund The Police?

Background

Ever since the video of George Floyd’s murder by police officers in Minneapolis circulated across the US, protests against police violence and racial injustice have erupted around the world.

Most calls to “Defund the Police” seek redistribution of funding away from police budgets and into other social sectors, such as education and mental health services. Other protestors are more focused on changing specific police practices, such as a national ban on chokeholds or an end to “qualified immunity” for police officers.

Discussion Questions

  1. What is the purpose of police? (What should their purpose be?)
  2. What is the most charitable interpretation of the phrase “Defund the Police”?
  3. What is the least charitable interpretation of the phrase “Defund the Police”?
  4. The “CON” side has a major premise that we need police officers to serve and protect the American public. Do you think that a world with fewer police would be safer? Why or why not?

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