Arguments Against Standardization Of Policing Policy

March 13, 2018

Arguments Against Standardization Of Policing Policy

by Ian D Scofield

Last week I wrote an article that spoke towards the pros of standardizing policing policy in America. There are a lot of arguments that standardization of policing policy could benefit the country. But there are also plenty of arguments against the standardization of policing policy. Let’s take a look at the con arguments because everything has two sides. Knowing both sides can help you to be informed.

Jurisdictions Vary Greatly

In order to standardize policing policies you would have to come up with a large amount of policies and have them vary depending on type of jurisdiction. A highway patrolman doesn’t always do the same job as a city police officer and a fish and game officer doesn’t do what either of those do. Standards need to be developed for every job that is out there.

You can also make exceptions for specialized policing but those same exceptions would void the purpose of having standardization.

State’s Have Always Had The Authority Over Their Laws

Since America began states have always had the ability to choose how to enforce laws and train law enforcement offers, as long as it fits within the constitution and other federal laws. If the federal government takes away the right for states to train their own officers, it could be a slippery slope to having other state rights taken away. For example, the ability to host sanctuary cities.

Accountability Can Be Achieved In Other Ways

One of the biggest reasons that people want to create a national standard for policing policies, is that they want more accountable police. There are actually better ways to create more accountable police agencies. And without violating a state’s rights to have authority over their own laws.

A good example of a way to create higher levels of accountability, is to mandate police departments have separate entities investigate their internal affairs issues. This is just an example.

State Laws Vary

Every state has varying laws. While a law may be written one way in state number one, in state number two it might be written in another way. National standardization would therefore only be applicable to the specific tactics allowed and training. There would be no way to standardize how the law is enforced if there is no standardization to the law.

Chances Are Critics Still Won’t Be Happy

Critics of police in the recent few years have become very probing for police change but no matter how police departments have started to change, the critics want more. To completely satisfy critics, you will have to completely revamp policing in America. Instead of exploring national standards, maybe exploring revamping policing in America is a better idea.

As you can see, there aren’t that many arguments against standardizing policy. Another idea that was raised during the Obama Administration, was the concept of federalizing police forces. This idea also has some downsides. Many of the downsides are similar to the downsides of standardizing policy.

Now that you have read some of the negatives that come along with standardizing policing, what do you think? Which side do you fall on? That decision is complete up to you. I am not saying that I support either way, I just wanted to provide you all of the facts that I could. Remember, stay safe out there.



About The Author:

Ian is a staff writer at APTI and hospital security officer at a major medical center who has a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice with a Specialization in Administration of Justice.  He has held multiple positions in the security industry from patrol supervisor to auxiliary public safety officer.  At APTI he brings his writing skills to help further the careers of others and provide quality content.  Feel free to visit his freelancing site or his creative writing site.

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