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Sb411 Bill Paper

1547 words - 7 pages

Kendal Foster
Professor Robb
Poli Sci 1

Bill Paper
How many people today have witnessed police brutality either in person or on
TV? In a Washington Post article by Kimberley Kindy, she stated “at least 385 people
were shot and killed by police nation during the first five months of this year, more that
two a day, according to a Washington Post analysis. That is more than twice as much of
fatal police shootings tallied by the federal government over the past decade, a count that
officials concede is incomplete”. Police brutality in the United States is a huge problem
today. Each month you hear about more stories about the police using excessive force on
a person. There ...view middle of the document...

On February 25th
State Senator Ricardo Lara came up with a bill making it completely legal for people to
record police activity. The Senator’s Bill 411 was signed on August 11th, 2015 by
Governor Brown, after going through legislation for several months. This bill states that a
person can photograph or video record a police officer in a public place. The person
taking the photograph or video has to be in a place they have the right to be. An officer
can’t detain the person because there is no probable cause. District attorneys, police
chiefs and most of the Republican Party oppose passing this bill.

The Patriot Act is an antiterrorism law passed by Congress in 2001 after the 9/11
attacks. The act gives the government access to tap phone lines and track internet users.
So to the groups that oppose this bill, why can the government invade the people’s
privacy for protection against terrorism, but the people cant record law enforcement for
the protection of them selves against those who our supposed to be protecting us? In
addition, the first Amendment says we have freedom of speech and press. According to
Mickey Osterreicher, an attorney with the National Press Photographers Association, told
the Huffington Post “ There are first Amendment protections for people photographing

and recording in public. As long as you don’t get in their way, its perfectly legal to take
photos and videos of police officers everywhere in the United States”. Therefore not
being able to record the police violates the first Amendment if you are following the
specific terms. The Peace and Freedom party supports the Senator’s Bill 411 because we
want the public to have as much freedom as possible. In the book “The Struggle For
Democracy” it says “The First Amendment of the Constitution helps ensure that the news
media will be able to expose officials misbehavior without fear of censorship or
prosecution” meaning police officers can be exposed by the people. The Democrats also
support this bill.

Notably, being a member of the Peace and Freedom party we fully support this
bill. On our website our platform says “We call for the defense and extension of the
liberties guaranteed in the bill of rights, including freedom of speech, press, assembly and
association”. Which means we think the people should have the right to videotape in the
act of their defense or with another individual. We also want controlled police review
boards of discipline. Usually when someone videotapes an officer today, the officer is out
of discipline and not doing the correct procedures to detaining a person.

This bill being passed is a start to finding a solution to this problem. Recardo Lara
said in the “DailyKos” article says “The issue of video taping, by telephone or other
means, has been a flash point at any number events and cause for arrest for those doing
so. This makes clear, absent other actions, one cannot be arrested or detained for the sole

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