OPINION BY NATE BARNETT
In 2016, the media spreads information and opinions without waiting for the facts leading to our country’s police constantly under fire from the media while at work.
The public opinion of police has been becoming progressively negative since 2013, and people believe the media has had an impact.
Many different sources state that the number of police being killed on the job is low, but media coverage of police being killed is high.
At the same time the media has covered many police involved shootings, including the shootings of Michael Brown, Alton Sterling, Freddie Gray, Tamir Rice, and many more.
Why is the media not reporting on the good things that the police do? With enough searching, it is very easy to find positive information on occurrences with officers of the law, yet major media outlets choose to only report on the negative side of law enforcement. If the media decides to libel the name of law enforcement, they should also be responsible to show the positive side of it.
This wave of negativity towards officers has been brought on by continuous negative media and social media coverage. In many cases when a man is shot and killed by an officer, the media reports without full knowledge and social media spirals out of control. This leads to riots and the occasional “revenge murder” as major media outlets such as the LA Times call it.
A lot of the violence directed towards police has made many officers more jumpy around people who do not follow orders given to them, resulting in many more police involved shooting.
I know many officers and they all agree that the media is very negative towards police and other forms of law enforcement.
A great example of this type of incident that inspires this fear is the recent Boston shooting on October 11th. Two officers were shot and are in critical condition. Officers responded and were forced to shoot and kill the man. He was in body armor, had an automatic rifle and he was believed to be only targeting officers.
The media has a major amount of influence over many people; this includes different forms of social media. Some people will believe anything they see at first glance without looking into the topic. This leads to even more rumors and this is how social unrest starts.
There are cases where “bad cops” ruin the respected name of police, but the media does not help either.
The most recent example of negativity towards police was the recent shooting in Los Angeles where an African American man was shot. This shooting led to riots throughout the city. Two days after the shooting, an LAPD officer was shot and killed in a ambush with six others.
This is an example of how one bad accident can lead to another mans death, and unfortunately, the media does not help solve problems, they only create problems.
People forget that police officers are not machines. At the end of the day, they are people, and they do feel scared and pressured. They have families that they want to return home to, no matter the cost.