Defunding The Police


Step 1


What: Write a short thought-piece about your own initial thoughts about this issue (You need to agree with the idea of defunding the police please)


Why: Part of our agenda for Practicum is to examine some large social justice issue related to the following objectives: (1) Demonstrate knowledge of disciplinary concepts (gained from previous courses) through exploring social justice issues or case studies and (2) Apply social justice concepts to imagine, plan, and organize around solutions to the social injustices we observe.

Reflecting on where you are starting the thinking, learning, and researching process on a controversial issue is helpful for mindful learning (see below).


In the wake of George Floyd’s killing by Minneapolis police on Memorial Day, 2020, outrage has swept the US, and even the world, as the event triggered people re-examining again the patterns of racist police violence that is endemic to our country. The shooting of Jacob Blake by police in Kenosha, and the lack of addressing the killing of Breonna Taylor in Louisville, KY are additional cases that fueled ongoing protests.


While some activists, associated with the Abolitionist movement, have pushed for defunding policing for quite a while, this year’s uprisings and outrages have made the issue come to the forefront of public awareness more than ever before.




Questions to consider in your essay

o What is your initial reaction to the proposal to defund the police?

o What does “defunding the police” mean? (The assumption in this course is that you may start with a perspective that is provisional. Learning means being open to changing your mind as you learn new information.)

o What are your concerns – on any side of the issue?

o What do you think other peoples’ concerns would be (say who you are thinking of when you talk about “other people”).


Here are some principles of mindful learning to keep in mind:

· learning includes the continuous creation of new categories

· learning includes openness to new information

· awareness that new information may require new approaches

· our perspectives are always limited; conclusions are always provisional.



400 – 500 words (this is about 1.5 to 2 pages, typed, double-spaced in 12-pt font)

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