Although the Minneapolis City Council committed to defunding the police in June, it now regrets its promise and declares that “abolishing the police is not the right approach.”
This statement was made by City Council President Lisa Bender, one of the most convinced, in June, that the police department should be abolished, according to The Daily Wire of Sept. 28.
For Bender, who claims to be a progressive, defunding the police would have meant not being complicit in “white supremacy.”
The furor over defunding the police arose with the death of African American George Floyd in police custody on May 25. This case sparked a major wave of violent riots in many cities.
While the City Council debated the defunding of the police, the rise in crime broke several records.
By July 25, at least 275 people had been shot in Minneapolis, exceeding annual totals for the past 10 years, and the average number of shootings was nearly 60 percent higher than the five years before that date, according to the local Star Tribune.
Faced with the overwhelming police capacity, Chief of the Minneapolis Police Medaria Arradondo and Mayor Jacob Frey asked for help from the FBI; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; and the Secret Service, among other federal security agencies.
“The FBI has a lot of technology at its disposal that it can use to help local departments,” explained Kyle Loven, a former FBI agent, according to the Star Tribune.
Some city groups accused the Council of recklessness in planning to abolish the police without having adequate plans to meet security needs.
The mayor and the Council need to move much, much faster on their commitments to transformative change. Justice cannot wait another year,” said Sheila Nezhad of Reclaim the Block.
The police not only deal with crime issues, but they often deal with other welfare services such as mental health and traffic regulation.
They also support safety in schools and universities, and even in disruptions to coexistence such as noisy neighbors. In some places they also respond to 911 emergency calls.
Previous attempts to defund police in cities such as “Memphis and Chicago found that cutting law enforcement budgets did not reduce police violence or produce healthier relationships with the neighborhoods they patrol,” The Marshall Project reported.