US Opinion and Commentary

“VOA will present the policies of the United States clearly and effectively, and will also present responsible discussion and opinion on these policies.” — VOA Charter

Showing Archived Posts

How to Prevent Violence in Cleveland

Posted July 15th, 2016 at 10:32 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

It’s encouraging that the police chief, Calvin Williams, has rejected, at least in theory, a militarylike appearance for his officers. Police officers in a free and democratic society don’t look, or act, like soldiers.

It’s Not About Sentencing. Police Need to Make More Arrests.

Posted April 25th, 2016 at 2:49 pm (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

the share of violent crimes in the U.S. for which arrests are made is shockingly low — less than half in 2014, the FBI reports. For burglaries, the share was only 14 percent….A better approach involves not only expanding education and employment opportunities, to provide better alternatives to crime, but also increasing the odds that a criminal will […]

A Year After Freddie Gray’s Death, Two Baltimores

Posted April 20th, 2016 at 4:15 pm (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

Have massive protests and an ongoing trial caused police in Baltimore to change? It depends on who you ask.

Tamir Rice Protests Must Be Peaceful

Posted December 29th, 2015 at 10:30 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

We are not Baltimore. We are not Ferguson. We are Cleveland, and so far, we have shown the world how to protest without injury or harm to property. When those other cities burned, the violence achieved nothing. Innocent people were hurt and the schism widened between the police and the communities they serve.  

Reality of Implicit Race bias Is Well-documented

Posted November 6th, 2015 at 9:05 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

…Training can help people overcome implicit prejudice and the heightened perception of threat it brings, but there is an important caveat: They have to be motivated and willing and have to leave their defensiveness at the door.

We Need Cops With People Skills

Posted October 5th, 2015 at 10:57 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

One of the most important weapons in a cop’s arsenal is his authority. But authority presupposes legitimacy and trust. How much of either can a police officer — or a police force or the institution of policing itself — command when they operate under such a blatantly different set of rules?

Cops Die, Too

Posted August 31st, 2015 at 11:40 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

This has been a difficult year for violent incidents involving police. The news has focused mostly on cops using excessive or deadly force against unarmed men, mostly white cops shooting and killing unarmed black or Hispanic men…

How Ferguson and #BlackLivesMatter Taught Us Not to Look Away

Posted August 10th, 2015 at 8:53 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

One year ago, on August 9 2014, then-police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri…. From that minute has grown a movement, reinforced on a seemingly daily basis by new violence.  

Sandra Bland’s Fate Sealed by Bad Policing

Posted July 28th, 2015 at 1:46 pm (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

The trooper’s authority over Bland ended when he wrote her a warning ticket. But he extended that traffic stop … And for that he is morally — and a civil court may find him legally — responsible for what happened to Sandra Bland in that jail cell.

At Sandra Bland’s Funeral, Celebration and Defiance

Posted July 27th, 2015 at 9:05 am (UTC-4)
Comments are closed

Funerals are often predictably somber — a cloistering and culminating of grief and pain. Not Sandra Bland’s funeral…. Bland was the 28-year-old Illinois woman arrested after a traffic stop in Texas who died in a county jail.