Understanding the policy process is key to the developing, implementing and evaluation of effective polices. The following will briefly summarize the policy making process as described by Furlong and Kraft before delving into the highly politically profiled topic of excessive force.
AGENDA SETTING/ DEFINING THE PROBLEM
Agenda setting is the first stage of the process. It describes how a problem gets set on the political agenda (Kraft and Furlong, 2010, 73). They give a variety of examples in why certain issues are placed on the agenda and how citizens can get their issues on the political agenda. Social pressure and unrest is one way to get an issue on the agenda (Kraft et al., 2010, 73). In light of recent events surrounding cases such as Michael Brown, Eric Gardner, and Tamir Rice, the conversation regarding police use of force and the militarization of police forces has been a hot topic. The social unrest seen in riots, protests and boycotts has brought the issue to the political forefront, forcing politicians to develop strategic solutions to settle unrest.
Kraft and Furlong define policy formation as the drafting of goals and developing strategies to achieve set goals (Kraft et al., 2010, 73). Policy formation is critical because once the issue has been conceptualized and defined in the agenda setting phase, policies are created to address the defined problem. Policy analysis, law-makers and other stakeholders play vital roles in setting goals and creating ideas to solve problems set on the agenda. Policy formation has already begun surrounding the topic of excessive use of force.
Creating new ideas to solve problems is great, but without proper funding it will not be effective. Kraft and Furlong (2010, 73) describe policy implementation as “institutional resources for putting the programs into effect within a bureaucracy.” Programs need financial support in order to be successful. Support can come from the federal or state level as well as nonprofit organizations and private businesses (Kraft et al., 2010, 73). Without proper funding, great policies can become ineffective.
It is imperative to be able to measure effectiveness of implementation policies. Program evaluation determines future funding and support (Kraft et al., 2010, 73). It also allows analysts to make recommendations on how to better improve programs or develop new programs to address problems that may not have been addressed.
When full evaluations and recommendations are received, it gives policies an opportunity to morph into something new in order to fit the political environment (Kraft et al., 2010, 73). The excessive use of force definition that stands today may change of the course of months, years and decades. As the definition changes, so will the policies that address the defined problem. This will bring the policy cycle full circle.
B. Summary of Policy Issue
The excessive use of force by police officers has become a big phenomenon across the United States in recent years following the brutality displayed on our television sets, on our blog sites, and our social media sites i.e. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Even with the wealth of cases provided that are deemed excessive force, the term does not have a solidified definition; however, for the sake of this paper, we will define excessive use force as “acts that threaten or inflict physical harm on suspects” (Terrill, 2003). In this paper we will define excessive force as a threat or the action of inflicting pain up to death. We would argue, that if the number of excessive force complaints decrease, the use of excessive force decreases as well.
While there have been many indicators and reasons deemed appropriate for the use of excessive force, we often times think of an officer’s force in relation to external controls as opposed to an officer’s internal influences. Though police officers go through mental evaluations prior to coming on the force, these illnesses can be diagnosed or indicated later on in their careers. It will be important to find research on drug use in order to prevent excessive for
In order to properly examine an issue, it critical to recognize the contexts surrounding the problem. Public policy is not created in a vacuum. Many factors influence public policies making it a dynamic force. Furlong and Kraft discuss five contexts policy analysts should use: political, social, economic, government, and cultural. Dr. Waldner introduces a sixth context to consider which is historical.
The political context is conceptualized as part affiliations such as democrat vs. republican which can greatly influence policies. In Social context consists of the demographics of a particular place and time. The governing context involves the structure of government and asks the question who carries it out? The economic context involves the state of the economy and if it is in a deficit or surplus, the historical context cites the regulations in place and a stepping stone, and the cultural context deals with the values and beliefs system.
The most important context in this topic is the social context. Beyond just social media, there has been an outpouring of social support for providing justice to victims of excessive force. The more recent victims of excessive force have been minority men in urban settings with the same demographics. The issues have not been handled on an economic level, as they regard lives and not the government’s money, and the government is slow to action when it comes to seeking appropriate measures to ensure the violence ends.
C. Reasons for Government Involvement
There are many reasons why government would get involved with an otherwise free-market economy. The three major reasons for government involvement is 1. Market failure, 2. Ethical reasons, and 3. Political reasons (Kraft et al., 2010, 15). Market failures expresses that the free market has some gap or is lacking to provide what is considered a public good to its citizens thus the need for government involvement (Kraft et al., 2010, 19). Government also regulates businesses, preventing monopolies and oligopolies from dominating a market which negatively impacts free-market competition. Another reason for government involvement is ethical. Morality, the concept of right and wrong, forces the government to intervene on social issues in order to stabilize the climate (Kraft et al, 2010, 16). Politics will continue to play a role in government involvement on public policies. Elected officials may use their power in office to influence policies in order to advance their careers (Kraft et al., 2010, 16). Politicians have enough leverage to sway which issues are placed on the political agenda.
The reason for government involvement regarding the use of excessive force is arguably a mixture of the three reasons listed by Kraft and Furlong. The two major reasons for government to get involved are market failures and ethics. An example of a market failure in this case in the results of the use of excessive force has on communities. Ferguson and Baltimore are prime examples of market failures in play. The negative externalities of riots plague the cities. With businesses, homes, and families destroyed, the government has a crucial role in rebuilding broken communities. Ethics is another reason for government involvement. For many, police use of excessive force impedes on an individual’s rights. Ethics is the interpretation of right vs. wrong. When officers are guilty in morally, but not within the justice system, therein lies a disconnect. It is important for the government to address the ethical concerns surrounding excessive use of force. Police officers are supposed to protect and serve the communities in which they live; however, some communities feel like officers are the aggressors and not the defenders of their areas. For these reasons, it is imperative the government gets involved by developing and implementing policies to address public concerns.
D. Instruments of Public Policy
Policy instruments are methods used by government to get desired results. These toolkits can be broken into two subcategories: regulatory instruments and economic instruments. Regulatory instruments encompass laws and regulations in order to influence behavior (Kraft et al., 2010). An example of a regulatory instrument are speed limits. Speed limits are a direct result of government policies that was passed through laws in order to reduce the number of road fatalities. Using regulations allows for uniformity and creating typically unbiased standards for all to adhere. On the other hand, it limits flexibility, so the same regulations may be too restrictive in some areas, but too lax in others. Tax credits, subsidies, incentives, and trade permits are examples of economic instruments used to influence businesses and individuals. For example, American farmers, can receive subsidies on their goods in order to supplement their incomes.
As it relates to excessive force, the government has many tools at its disposal to influence policies and gain support. Regulation is one instrument the government may use to achieve the desired result of reducing the use of excessive force by law enforcement. Creating a national standard of ethics for officers, mandating police agencies to use updated technology, or creating a separate agency are all examples of how the government can regulate excessive use of force. One downside to regulations is its limitations because what works in a small rural area may be ineffective for urban city centers. In order to overcome these limitations, all levels of government should be involved with developing policies so that the best solutions are implemented effectively at the street level.
E. Policy Typologies
Distributive policies are individual programs o grants that a government provides without regard to limited resources, or one party’s loss to help another party gain (Kraft et al., 2010, 91). These are often thought to be pork barreling programs as well (Kraft et al., 2010, 91).
Redistributive policies are typically controversial in nature and reflect ideological differences between two or more groups (Kraft et al., 2010, 92). This is where government takes from one group of people and gives to another, such as welfare entitlements and affirmative action (Kraft et al., 2010, 92).
Regulatory policies are the government’s restrictions and rules and because they are so broad, they fall into two categories (Kraft et al., 2010, 92). The first category is competitive regulation because it simply regulates businesses to keep the market fair, and the second is protection regulation, which protects the general public (Kraft et al., 2010, 92). The excessive use of force and its policies of trying to reduce it, fall under regulatory policies, more specifically the protection regulation, as the goal is to protect and serve.
F. Theoretical Model
Two theories of politics and public policy applicable to topic of excessive use of force are group and political systems theory. Group theory is the idea that the power of the political systems is widely spread amongst varying interest groups. Varying policy actors such as grassroots organizations influence policies. Black Lives Matter as well as other group are examples of advocacy coalitions that have gained political status in light of the social injustice surrounding law enforcements use of excessive force.
Political systems is another theory that one can apply to excessive use of force. Political systems theory is typically more comprehensible, covering a widespread policy issues. It mainly focuses on the response of political systems. In the case, the with the growing unrest and community outcries, all political systems have been impacted including federal, congressional, and judicial. Each system has a stake in calming the growing tensions that has swelled over the course of the year since the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Gardner. Social, cultural and economic contexts are largely considered in this theory. These are the two best theories to narrate the use of excessive force.
G. Three Policy Alternatives
The Excessive Use of Force Bureau (EUB) would be created to hold the actions of police departments, in the area of excessive use of force, accountable. The EUB will be a national level organization with state level sub-departments. In recent television broadcasts and social media outlets, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, we have seen police officers, such as Darren Wilson and Daniel Pantaleo, not even indicted, much less charged with committing these crimes and serving time. There is belief in the community that the same people who are jurors and carry out the investigations of these crimes, fit the same description of the officer in question. Because the case is handled by those in that department and who share similar cultures or backgrounds, it creates an undeniable bias and this bias is what often leads to a lack of justice for the fallen victim. The EUB would do away with such bias by not employing anyone who has anything to do with the police department, and bringing in a third party investigator. Every case of force used by the police would immediately be sent to the EUB and investigated by them. If the EUB finds that the force was justified, through careful investigation and consideration of the influences, there would be no indictments and no need to seek further investigation, but if foul play is in fact a factor, that officer or officers, who participated in the execution of excessive force will be indicted. Unlike most prison systems, however, the EUB will make it possible for the indicted officers to redeem themselves by offering rehabilitation services and programs in order to educate that officer on not only how they could have handled the situation, but how to handle any situation that may arise in their future.
This program would be modeled after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and what it did for the U.S. against terrorist acts, as well as FEMA. While Homeland Security has its hang-ups with its employees and can be a little costly, it has been highly effective against defending the country against threats from abroad. It is believed that the EUB will be able to mimic the success of the DHS with a budget that will be more feasible than that of the DHS due to the fact that most of the EUB will be administrative and will not need monies to build structures or employ its own officers as with the DHS.
In 2011, out of all the individual removals (approximately 396,906) by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) 55% of the individuals (approximately 216,698) had felonies or misdemeanors which was an 89% increase from 2008 (Homeland Security). These statistics are not just good in evaluative numerical value, but it serves a greater purpose. With this amount of illegal criminals being removed, it makes room for focus to be put on priority cases that could possibly result in another 9/11, which is why DHS was created in the first place. The desired result of the implementation of the EUB is that as it is hold accountable and indicts police officers that have been involved in excessive force cases, it allows more solid and viable data to be collected in efforts to reduce excessive force altogether. As the data is brought in, the EUB will then be able to produce criteria that may be used to prevent such cops from being hired, as well as intimidating current and future cops in a way that will reduce the likelihood of them using excessive force.
Body Cameras are an alternative as well. Body-worn cameras are mobile audio and video capturing devices that allow officers to record what they see and hear (Mateescu, Rosenblat, &Boyd, 2015). The devices can be attached to the body, including head and glasses, chest, lapel mounts and can record the interactions in greater depth than the typical in-car camera or interrogation room camera (Mateescu et al., 2015). Certain cameras can record 30 seconds prior to when an officer hits record, and the 30 seconds after they hit stop in an effort to capture all of the events and not just the incident in which the officer wants the viewers to see (Mateescu et al., 2015). While body cameras have proven to be a technological benefit in many situations, their use is subjective in nature as the officer decides when to press record and stop, the officer determines its level of comfort, and if it is not comfortable they are not always obligated to use them.
Body cameras are thought to provide unambiguous accounts of police-civilian encounters, as well as reveal instances of police misconduct, reform everyone’s behaviors, and rebuild trust between the police and the communities (Kozinski, C.J., 2014). Eugene Ramirez (2014) states that the primary benefits of body worn cameras are transparency and accountability, identifying system issues and making corrective actions, and the retention of evidence for investigations and court cases.
Although body cameras have great perceived benefits, there have been instances where a camera has filmed the situation and there is still no justice served, in the case of Eric Garner and Jason Harrison. In these two cases we see that cameras had none of the perceived benefits associated with the justice of the victimized. However, in the recent tragedy of Freddie Gray, with the camera footage received, six officers were indicted on severe charges.
Technology is an economically sound way to help solve part of the epidemic surrounding the use of excessive force. It is projected that by 2017 more than 200 million people in the United States alone will have a smart phone ("Smartphone users in the U.S. 2010-2018 | Forecast"). With this type of access due to the affordability of internet services, Americans are likely to own a smartphone which gives them an opportunity to download, share, and post to applications on their devices ("Smartphone users in the U.S. 2010-2018 | Forecast").
One policy alternative to consider is a mobile Police App. This application will be a portal joining together other smaller apps into one larger database. Similar applications do exist. For example, there is an app called Mobile Justice CA created by the ACLU that allows “ ordinary citizens to record and document any interaction with law enforcement (Besant, 2015).” It also has a GPS feature for individuals to track police incidents in their area ((Besant, 2015). A crucial limitation of this application is the fact it is limited to the California region. Similar applications are found in other states such as New Jersey, Oregon, Missouri and New York (Besant, 2015). Unfortunately, these applications are not currently available in multiple states, limiting its effectiveness. To address this issue, a newly developed police app will be created to connect the fragmented pieces. The growing number of citizen monitoring available on mobile applications is steadily rise as a response to the growing number of police brutality. The point of a nationwide app is to allow for efficient tracking and citizen accountability.
H. Three Evaluative Criteria
In this paper the evalutative criteria used will be effectiveness, cost and political feasibility. Effectiveness is defined of how likely the proposed solution will work. In this case, solutions are considered effective by how well it reduces or eliminates the use of excessive force.
Cost is the weight of the goals versus benefits. The criteria cost for this paper will evaluate the ethical and financial resources associated with excessive force. The ethical costs associated will be the human life aspect regarding a human’s level of privacy, a human life at stake and human compassion. The financial cost is the measurement associated with the monetary expenditures on creating and implementing the given alternative. It involves the policymakers, the stakeholders, politicians, and anyone directly affected by the given alternative.
The last criteria used is political feasibility. Political feasibility means how well elected officials support the policy proposal. Excessive force is an emotional, political, and socially charged issue with many politicians weighing in on recent occurrences. It is important that the solution(s) has political support in order to be effective and fully implemented, as well as the support of its stakeholders and the community at large.
In assessing the three alternatives we will first use the evaluative criteria mentioned above in a decision matrix chart. We will use a scale 1-3, with 3 being the best in the decision matrix, followed by a compare and contrast method of each policy alternative by comparing alternative #1 to alternative #2, followed by the better alternative of the two to alternative #3.
Excessive Use of Force Bureau
Mobile Police App
Alternative #1, the EUB will be the most effective. Because this is a new policy to be created, there is no research to prove its effectiveness, but because it emulates other organizations that have proven their worth and result, such as FEMA, independent monitoring agents, etc., its impact will likely be great. The bureaucratic nature of allows no room for error or human manipulation, such as the body-worn cameras or the policing app. This approach takes the bias from each case and makes it public record that a case of excessive force has been committed. It will be effective because it will hold each police officer, each department, each person involved in the case accountable, and in the process will create an intimidation factor that will have not only officers reducing excessive force, but the perceived suspect from violating laws as well. It will also be effective because it will help rebuild officers who may be accused and indicted of excessive force. Because they are human as well, we do not want them to go without proper management skills in day-to-day life.
Alternative #2, body cameras have more research determining their effectiveness. Following implementation of the body-worn camera program, citizen complaints against police declined by 88 percent—from 24 in 2011, a year before the study, to just three complaints during the camera project study period (Farrar 2013). Moreover, use of force by police officers dropped by 60 percent, from 61 to 25 instances, following the start of the body camera study (Farrar, 2013). Farrar (2013) reported two findings, first, shifts without cameras experienced twice as many incidents of use of force as shifts with cameras and, second, a qualitative review of all use of force incidents determined that officers without cameras were more likely to use force without having been physically threatened. The Rialto experiment showed a significant decrease in officer’s use of force. It is possible that this finding may be explained in part by changes in citizen behavior, citizens may have altered their behavior during encounters with officers who are wearing cameras, such as being more respectful and compliant, which led to fewer incidents in which officers needed to use force (White, 2014). A second significant trend is the improvement of officers’ attitudes (White, 2013). Initially, officers were typically negative or nonchalant about the job they did. Body cameras have also been effective in the UK, through the Plymouth Head Camera Project, by the documentation of the violent crime’s occurrence and its likelihood in developing a guilty plea instead of heading to court (Goodall, 2007).
Alternative #3 is unfortunately the least effective policy. Not only is the application new, there are so many versions of it, that it can leave an individual stuck on whether the application should be downloaded or not and its reliability. As with all new technology and apps, there will be glitches, updates, and potential crashes and viruses that can affect its availability. Another limitation of its effectiveness is its potential use for something other than just seeing incidents in the area, some may use it just as a way to track where the police are. The biggest limitation however is the fact that the app is limited to the state of California. To reduce excessive force, this app needs to be nationwide without defects.
Alternative #2, body cameras, are the most cost effective, both ethically and financially. Body cameras and their visibility can help save the lives of the perceived suspect because of an officer’s decision not to use excessive force with the camera on, as well as it can save the officer’s life from danger if the suspect recognizes the body camera and decides not to harm the officer. There are also social costs and concerns associated with the use of body cameras. They include: concerns for citizens’ privacy as well as an officer’s privacy, and witness privacy (White, 2013). As federal law states, warrantless videos are illegal and this can be a cost if not properly handled and regulated prior to implementation. Witnesses and informants may be less likely to provide information to police, knowing that the encounter is recorded and can be viewed by others later (Harris 2010). With these ethical concerns, come financial costs as well. Each camera starts at $800 and can go to $1,000 for the TASER AXON and VIEVU models to be worn by officers (White, 2013). The cost of data storage and management can be significant as well. The Mesa (2013) report states that the initial purchase of fifty AXON FLEX cameras, including applicable sales tax was $67,526.68 and the video storage with Evidence.com for $93,579.22 and a third year option for $17,799.22. Alongside those costs is the redaction process cost that takes one time, at least 10 hours of video editing, not necessarily their money (MPD, 2013).
Alternative #1, The EUB, is the most financially costly. If we align the similarities of it to the DHS or FEMA, we see that over $60 billion are spent annually. In terms of human life, there is no cost or price on saving a life, which makes it a more sound decision than alternative #3.. The Bureau combats the loss of human life by taking every avenue to ensure that not only is justice served for the victims that have already lost their lives, but by making sure excessive force doesn’t happen in the future.
Alternative #3, is the mostly policy option. The cost of developing a successful mobile application can be pretty expensive. The range of mobile development runs from $50,000- 200,000 respectively (Formotus, 2015). Cost mainly depends on the depth of the application (Formotus, 2015). In-house developers are one way to keep costs down. Another possibility to address cost is to partner with local police agencies. In a recent article, one California city reports a local police agency partnering with a free app, Alert- 360, to increase community policing in their neighborhood (Bay City News, 2015). Partnering with local governments and possibly federal agencies such as the Department of Justice will cut the investment cost of developing a national database for police accountability.
Alternative # 3 is the most politically feasible. An effective citizen-monitored police app is politically feasible. While there may be some officers who are offended by the thought of having an application so readily available to its residents, most would welcome the change. Similar to the feedback of body cameras, majority of police officers welcome the footage to showcase their work. Also, though start-up cost may be high, developing an app is cheaper than most alternatives presented. The nationwide app gives citizens an opportunity to hold law enforcement accountable as well as inform communities about police safety. MyPD is an example of an application that is currently being used on a smaller scale. The application gives individuals an opportunity to quickly contact their community police departments ("MyPD - My Police Department App - MyPD App", 2013). MyPD has a variety of features all related to connecting the community to their local police department. At this time, police departments have to opt in to use the app. From the report, roughly 200 police agencies have opted in ("MyPD - My Police Department App - MyPD App", 2013). Increasing awareness will draw more neighborhoods to use the app. Government officials would also support technology like MyPD because it is a smart, tech savvy, way to smooth tension in police torn communities.
Alternative #2, body cameras are the second best option. In regards to elected officials accepting and supporting the policy of body cameras, there has been much objection, from every level, including mandated laws. Federal law blocks the warrantless capturing of photo or video images of people where they have an expectation of privacy and a number of states require two-party consent before a recording of private conversations can take place (White, 2013). In September 2011, the Seattle Police Department determined that use of body-worn cameras would violate Washington state law and the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, a police union, responded by threatening to file suit against the department because the cameras represented a “clear change in working conditions” that would have to be negotiated through the union contract (Schoenmann 2012).
Alternative #3, the EUB, will have the least amount of political feasibility. Though it will be created with political bureaucracy in mind, stakeholders, mainly the police officers themselves, will be opposed to its implementation. Not only will it cost the federal and state government billions of dollars, which makes them not want to implement the policy. It will hold these police departments accountable, and in turn can cost that department the loss of trust in the community and it will cost them financially if they see a case presented. The only supporters will more than likely be the community, because it will stop the negative images of victims so prominent indwell stop the officers from being victimized, when they can be the perpetrator.
ALTERNATIVE 1 TO ALTERNATIVE 2
In discussing the alternatives, we first compare and contrast the EUB to the body cameras. Because of the political nature of the EUB, its regulations and government implementation- political feasibility- will be more easily accessible and predicted because of the emulation of Homeland Security and FEMA. While the cost may be substantially greater, it is more likely to gain support over time, while body cameras violate many laws and human privacy rights. Body cameras are also more subjective in nature and they can easily be mishandled by not turning them on, intentionally turning them off, etc. The EUB is a government entity that holds everyone accountable, not just when the camera is on. The EUB will be more effective, for reasons already stated. It will be mandatory, it is bureaucratic in nature, and it is not situational, whereas body cameras can be distorted, tampered with, and potentially voluntary.
ALTERNATIVE 1 TO ALTERNATIVE 3
Three criteria were used to measure each alternative - effectiveness, cost, and political feasibility. To recap, Alternative 1 is the Excessive Use of Force Bureau (EUB). The EUB is an independent third party agency that investigates any incident revolving excessive use of force. Alternative 3 is a nationwide Police App, MyPD. The police app will connect communities to local law enforcement agencies allowing for citizen oversight and accountability.
Using the first criteria, effectiveness, Alternative 1 comes on top. Although it would take time to develop and flesh out all details, a fully functioning EUB agency addresses many concerns surrounding excessive force incidents. In the case of Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, and Eric Gardner, the stories of the officers seemed pretty identical as if there is internal coaching within the police department. The culture of police departments has the public distrusting the very people who had sworn to protect and serve them. Having third party oversight will bring checks and balance to an injustice judicial system. Alternative 3 does not address effectiveness as directly. The impact of Alternative 3 will not leave as lasting of an imprint when compared to Alternative 1. As technology changes, so will the use of any applications. Alternative 1 offers a more well-rounded solution when it comes to the likelihood of effectively addressing the issues of excessive forces.
Perhaps surprising to most, Alternative 1 beats out Alternative 3 when it relates to cost. Costs does not simply relate to monetary gains. The price of saving a human life is practically invaluable. Alternative 1 is a solution that in the long run will save more lives because holding police accountable and decreases the likelihood of officers using excessive force. Creating a third party agency also builds trust that has been lost. Financially, Alternative 3 is a sure winner; however, financial gain is only a portion when it relates to determining the overall cost of programs. I would agree the benefits of Alternative 1 far outweigh its costs.
Alternative 3 is the easiest to gain government support. Using technology allows for citizen oversight, but does not require as much “hands on” policy changes. Elected officials have an opportunity to remain politically neutral with Alternative 3, so it is a solution they can support. Alternative 1 is likely to receive backlash. It is going to take both parties to come to a consensus in order to fully support as well as fund a third party agency such as the EUB. Political feasibility is not impossible with Alternative 1. The growing tensions matched with grassroots organizations can persuade elected officials to fully implement the EUB.
J. Justification of Best Alternative
In summary of our compare and contrast we believe that the EUB will be the best suitable solution. There has been research and statistics that show when there is an organization put in place to handle crimes as seen with DHS there is a significant decrease in such activity. The EUB seems to be more of a fix to excessive use of force rather than a Band-Aid such as body armor and policing apps. But the good thing about the EUB is that it could use alternatives such as these to help accomplish the goal of ridding the country of excessive force incidents.
K. Types of Policy Analyses
The most resourceful methods of policy analyses in the case of excessive force are the impact assessment and ethical analysis.
The impact assessment is the interest in trying to project the consequences of adopting or not adopting a policy proposal (Kraft et al., 2010, 174). It is to see if analysts can systematically examine the effects that may occur by taking action (Kraft et al., 2010, 174). In the case of excessive force and the potential policies to be implemented, it will be important to understand and construct the impacts so that the policy goes beyond formation and into implementation, legitimation and evaluation.
Ethical analysis is the systematic examination of ethical or normative issues in public policy (Kraft et al., 2010, 177). Though ethical analysis rarely receive the kind of attention it needs to receive, this particular topic has a violation of moral and ethical codes written all over it, and this is beyond an economic crisis or political pressure, these are human lives, that are invaluable.
The excessive use of force by police officers is an epidemic running rampant through the American culture. Excessive force has so many variables that contribute to its use. They include race of both the officers and suspects, the stereotypes of the perceived suspect, the neighborhood policed and many others. In this assignment we have described the rational analysis, we’ve discussed excessive force and its components, and we’ve discussed reasons for government involvement, including market failures, ethical and political concerns. We also delved into the instruments of public policy, policy typologies, and we discussed the theoretical model presented best in this context. In the second half, we devised the three best policy alternatives to solving the issue of excessive use of force. We developed a new program altogether, called the Excessive Use of Force Bureau, that will leave no case untouched if excessive force has been used. We also suggested the continued use of body-worn cameras on officers to combat the use of force, and we also suggested implementing a police app across the entire nation. To best decide on the appropriate policy to adopt, we used three evaluative criteria, effectiveness, cost, and political feasibility and a compare and contrast method. In the end, we decided, through the appropriate assessments that alternative #1, the Excessive use of Force Bureau, is the best option for eradicating excessive use of force. Its design is to eliminate bias, create accountability of the police officers and perceived suspects involved, and give every case a fair trial.
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