Police Aren't The Solution To This Country's High Traffic Death Rates

Black man in driver seat
Zain Murdock
November 2, 2021

 “If you get pulled over by a cop, move slowly. Comply, comply, comply.” That’s what we’ve been taught, right? But from Sandra Bland to Daunte Wright to nearly Lil’ Romeo, compliance at traffic stops clearly doesn’t keep police from killing us. 

And when traffic stops account for 25% of police shootings of unarmed Black men, we need a better way!

84% of people’s interactions with police actually happen on the road. And traffic safety is actually a huge problem in the U.S.

Despite all that law enforcement, the traffic death rate is 50% higher compared to other countries. 

So if we got rid of traffic police, wouldn’t that mean things would just get worse?

Actually, no! There are always other solutions, that either already exist or that we can imagine

Automated license plate cameras can prevent speeding. Mental health and addiction services can handle drunk drivers and people in crisis. Tech can prevent cars from starting unless you’re buckled in and sober. Better driver’s ed would help. More reliable, accessible public transportation would be huge!

It’s hard to think about a world without police because we’ve been taught all our lives that we need them. But do police actually serve a net good for Black people’s safety on the road? We are allowed to imagine better for ourselves. The less opportunity police have to kill us, the better.

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