With all the talk about body cameras and police shootings, two questions we should consider are: “Are we relying too much on technology?” and “Do we have higher expectations than what the cameras can deliver?”
While Americans have discussed, debated, and even protested to see the footage from controversial incidents, body cameras will not solve deep-seated trust issues people have with the police.
A University of South Carolina law professor recently published an article in the New York Times about how people perceived body-camera footage.
The first video presented will most likely make you sick from the motion, but it seems to indicate the officer was in danger, and most people surveyed said there was some danger. I was surprised to learn that when you saw the same video from a different point of view, what was actually happening was the men were chest bumping. Man, was I wrong, and so were so many others. Even though I think law enforcement should be equipped with cameras, are we relying too much on technology to solve cases, instead of using all means to judge the actual event?
The issues surrounding the use of police body cameras were the focus of an event hosted by the Civitas Institute in Greensboro last week.
In light of the technology that law enforcement is given, we need to understand not only the strengths of body cameras but also their limitations. It’s truer than ever that perception isn’t always reality.