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As I See It

Calls to defund the police fall flat



After the murder of George Floyd, the calls to defund the police grew loud. But while they were loud, they weren’t entirely clear what was meant by defund the police. There were vague notions of directing money intended for police to other government agencies which proponents said would more effectively deter crime and protect minority communities. But what is clear is that defund the police is a terrible slogan for what proponents of improved policing are hoping to achieve. Polling shows public support for restricting police funding has waned. A recent Pew Research survey finds 47% believe police funding in their communities should increase, not decrease, up from 31% in 2020. Clearly, calls to defund police are not resonating with voters and not leading to victories at the ballot box. That is not to say some changes aren’t needed. The George Floyd Policing Act before Congress would prohibit racial profiling, ban chokeholds and no-knock warrants and end the qualified immunity officers currently enjoy. But that is not the same as defunding the police. La Crosse County’s new police oversight board should read the tea leaves and realize that defunding police is not a popular idea as they consider changes to local police practices.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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  1. Chip DeNure

    February 7, 2022 at 6:41 am

    When you talk about the murder of George Floyd, you should also consider that he had 3 times the fatal level of fentenyl in his system, and was saying he couldn’t breathe prior to being taken to the ground after resisting arrest.

  2. Kent Porter

    February 7, 2022 at 8:25 am

    George Floyd is Dead , and a Stinky Cop is in PRISON , I guess we win both ways , I wouldn’t DEFUND THE POLICE , LETS DEFUND BAD COPS AND THUGS !!!!!!!!!!!!! THAT’S THE WAY I SEE IT !!!!!!!!!!

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