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Controversial police shootings: Will things get wo...

Controversial police shootings: Will things get worse before it gets better?

The words police and shootings create a sensitive topic to discuss when used in the same sentence. But it may not be too often you associate those two words on a college campus.

Wayne State University, Ohio State University, University of California-Merced, El Centro College, Florida State University, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology are just a few schools that have been the center of attention because of violence over the past two years. And all incidents ended with either a dead officer or citizen. With all chaos and controversy that’s been erupting lately, it’s impossible to suspect where another threat may come from. Fortunately, even with the nationalized news, colleges do remain to be a safer location for those who inhabit and attend them.

But they still have their flaws. Last year, a University of Cincinnati police officer, who was white, shot and killed an unarmed black man during a traffic stop off campus. The jury was unable to reach a verdict in the case, which caused a mistrial. A new date has not yet been set. This subsequently caused an uproar of protests around the campus and city.

The university has said they are working to review and reform, if necessary, all policies, procedures and trainings. But are they just as confused, and even helpless, as the rest of the nation? Because we are still dealing with these issues now. And it’s starting to seem like a never-ending cycle: An officer kills a man who posed a threat, the man may or may not have been armed, citizens are outraged, the officer is charged, and more times than not, is not convicted.

Anyone have a solution? Our country can be much better than this.

This in no way favors any side over the other, as there dishonest and immoral individuals on both, but the grief is finding a solution that provides tolerable justice.

A report showed that from 1995 to 2002, individuals ranging from ages 18-24 were 24 times more likely to experience violence if they are not enrolled in college. I strongly believe those numbers are still relevant.

So it is in my greatest hopes that our schools will protect and value the lives of students who are choosing to pursue higher education and striving to lessen their chance of becoming yet another victim/suspect of a police shooting. If nothing else, let’s at least resolve that problem.

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About Sheridan C. Watkins

From sneaking to read “Goosebumps” under my covers (when I should’ve been sleep) as a child to writing and reporting news for my college newspaper, I’ve always had a passion for reading and writing. And when a motivated reader and writer interconnects inspiring words with awareness, changes can happen! I’ve always believed it’s important to stay up-to-date on everything happening around us. Locally, nationally, and internationally. News is its own butterfly effect, and ignorance is not bliss. I achieved my degree in journalism and English from THE Winston-Salem State University in 2016. And even beyond my college career, I make it a point to sustain as much new knowledge as I can take, write about it and share it with those who will benefit from it most. Sometimes, people don’t know what they need to know until they know it (if that makes sense). And that’s O.K. That’s what I’m here for—to share my knowledge and make my readers aware!


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