2020-06-02: Policing by Consent                             rak

After reading about the mass protests around the US and
associated police brutality, I can't help but wonder why Peel's
Principles of Policing were never adopted into American culture.

=> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peelian_principles

Peel's principles are the basis of the "policing by consent"
approach of law enforcement in Commonwealth countries, and in my
experience lead to better relations between law enforcement and
the public. Indeed, under Peel's principles, "police are the
public and the public are the police" (principle 7).

I think principles 6 and 9 are also particularly relevant today:
you don't need crushing shows of force to show your worth as a
police force. It is sufficient to ensure the absence of crime,
and to do so through persuasion whenever possible.

1. To prevent crime and disorder, as an alternative to their
   repression by military force and severity of legal
2. To recognise always that the power of the police to fulfil
   their functions and duties is dependent on public approval of
   their existence, actions and behaviour, and on their ability
   to secure and maintain public respect.
3. To recognise always that to secure and maintain the respect
   and approval of the public means also the securing of the
   willing co-operation of the public in the task of securing
   observance of laws.
4. To recognise always that the extent to which the co-operation
   of the public can be secured diminishes proportionately the
   necessity of the use of physical force and compulsion for
   achieving police objectives.
5. To seek and preserve public favour, not by pandering to
   public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolutely
   impartial service to law, in complete independence of policy,
   and without regard to the justice or injustice of the
   substance of individual laws, by ready offering of individual
   service and friendship to all members of the public without
   regard to their wealth or social standing, by ready exercise
   of courtesy and friendly good humour, and by ready offering
   of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life.
6. To use physical force only when the exercise of persuasion,
   advice and warning is found to be insufficient to obtain
   public co-operation to an extent necessary to secure
   observance of law or to restore order, and to use only the
   minimum degree of physical force which is necessary on any
   particular occasion for achieving a police objective.
7. To maintain at all times a relationship with the public that
   gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are
   the public and that the public are the police, the police
   being only members of the public who are paid to give
   full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every
   citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.
8. To recognise always the need for strict adherence to
   police-executive functions, and to refrain from even seeming
   to usurp the powers of the judiciary, of avenging individuals
   or the State, and of authoritatively judging guilt and
   punishing the guilty.
9. To recognise always that the test of police efficiency is the
   absence of crime and disorder, and not the visible evidence
   of police action in dealing with them.


EDIT (2020-06-05): Daniel Gold wrote a nice reply to my post,
"Peelers and Posses (reply to rak)":
=> gopher://ascraeus.org:70/0/phlog/056.txt