Friday, February 3, 2012

Cleaning up the Streets or Not really

We all grow up learning a specific set of morals from either our own families and those from peers throughout our lives. Law enforcement officials are expected to be more ethical than an average everyday person. We have been discussing in class the roles ethics play in society and how to distinguish right from wrong. Like many jobs, police officers are tempted every day with making easy money, letting people of authority off and accepting gifts from the public. We as a society hear from time to time about criminal justice officials getting involved in acts that are morally wrong. Not filing evidence, planting evidence and distributing drugs and alcohol.   
Bigger Police departments have undercover narcotics units. In this video below is how we expect all officer to act in these situations with drugs in communities. It is the way that Kant would expect any official to act in drug bust situations. Something stressed religiously throughout Kant's views of ethics, is that everyone no matter who they are should be treated equally. Kant believes that happiness is irrelevant. The law is the Law no matter what. This youtube video below displays a deterrence method within the criminal justice field. We talked also about Utilitarianism, which happens to be the logical way of thinking and rationalizing.   

We hear all the time that there were busts on police departments narcotics units. "A drug addict performed sex acts on New York Police Department officers in return for crack cocaine," according to A Daily Mail reporter. In this specific case a police officer was asking for sexual favors from an addict and distributed drugs after the fact. In the article below shows and proves that this specific officer was only thinking about his happiness and not looking out for the greater good. Not only what he was doing was unethical, he was promoting more drugs onto the streets. When people act out in these ways they don’t stop to think that they are preventing other officers perform their duties. This officer’s virtue was way off because he presented himself in a way that makes all of police officers look like they don’t know the difference between wrong and right. More of the article dealt with the fact that police officers have a “blue code of silence.“ A term that is very important to people on the force, because they are supposed to have each other’s backs and not snitch on one another. “Melanie Perez, testifying at the trial of Jason Arbeeny, told Brooklyn Supreme Court that another officer called her to his home, made her smoke drugs and then demanded sex.” (Daily Reporter) This here makes myself and other reader believe that there was more than one officer involved and no one had moral values to step up.
In the end we hope that police officer can use their discretionary decisions themselves and can find a balance between ignoring the law and applying the law too rigorously. The value of ethics helps increase the sensitivity to what is right and what is wrong. We all like to think we act out for the greater good, but we all have an ounce of selfishness within us. Laws are there for us to follow the rules and if it applies to one person then it applies to all people, no matter the race, gender and age.   

Victoria Sims

Daily Mail Reporter, “NYPD narcotics officers 'gave crack addict drugs in return for sex.” Mail Online. Web. Feb 1 2012

1 comment:

  1. You made a good point that I really liked earlier in the article about how police officers are supposed to be held to a higher moral standard than the average person. This is so true and very important. Like you said, my morals were instilled into me long ago by my parents. They taught me how to live a good life and be an all around good person. I've always held myself to a higher moral standard, and that is one reason why I want to become a police officer.