America’s Unjust Police Departments

Kaitlin Yu, Co-editor in chief

Our country says “every man is created equal.”

Except for minorities, it seems.

When it comes down to it, our police departments are festering with racism, homophobia and transphobia.

New York Police Department officer Pedro Serrano said to the commanding officers only want numbers. They want reports, and it doesn’t matter how petty the write-up is.

They almost always racially profile for stop-and-frisks, too, which is something Serrano experienced when he was a teenager. He described a racial tension between the police and the citizens.

It doesn’t seem like a big deal to be stopped more often than others. If you’re not doing anything, then it’s fine to be frisked. However, it’s almost dehumanizing how the color of your skin is what separates you from criminal and citizen.

LGBTQ people are also harassed, sometimes violently, by officers, according to

The LGBTQ community already has to deal with a lot of judgment and harassment everywhere else — they should be able to trust the police to protect them. However, they can’t.

Misogyny is common — female officers have been reporting abusive male officers.

But, a few bad cops can’t compare to the thousands of good cops out there, right?

According to, 60-80 percent of officers who abuse their authority or use more force than necessary aren’t reported by fellow officers.

There are good officers out there; however, these officers let corrupt officers get away with abuse. This perpetuates the fact that citizens aren’t as important.

Officers should be required to always wear body cameras to prevent abuse. This camera would be turned on at all times, so it would capture every moment of their day.

A study done by the Police Foundation revealed when officers wore cameras, it reduced abusive incidents by 50 percent.

If we truly want to have equality for everyone, then we have to start in our police departments. Cameras aren’t going to be able to solve for prejudice in the departments; however, it’s a good place to start.

When authorities finally treat everyone with equal respect, then respect can be returned.