07 Dec 2014 Renewed Community Policing Pushed to Promote Peace
With tempers flaring in the black community about alleged persecution by the police and an atmosphere of fear and distrust between cops and young black men, Project 21 member Kevin Martin – who once found himself accidentally on the wrong side of some angry cops – said the road to renewed trust can come through more interaction between the two parties through changes such as bringing back community policing and encouraging local residents to join the police force.
In a conversation with guest host Larry Elder on the 11/28/14 edition of “The Rick Amato Show” on the One America News Network, Kevin said “you change a problem from within.” He added, based on his own experience in helping change the way police and residents related to each other years ago in Price Georges County, Maryland: “Some of the men out of the street protesting [in Ferguson]… should be joining that police force. And not only the police force in Ferguson, but police forces nationwide.”
After his own experience being ripped from his car and thrown in a jail cell after being mistaken for a wanted criminal suspect years ago, Kevin said his response was not to lash out be to get involved. He “actively became a part of [his] community” by testifying at a civilian review board and at other local events in which he could share his perspective on crafting police policy. Speaking again about what occurred in Price Georges County, he said “we encouraged our young men… to engage and join the police force” and “if you are the police, and you look like the county, you have nothing to fear, in my opinion.”
Responding to Elder’s concern that that community policing to make police forces look like the community might turn into unproductive demographic quotas, Kevin said: “I don’t care what your skin color is. I don’t care what your gender is. As long as you’re competent, as long as you can do the job… hey – sign up.”