- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 10 hours and 35 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Brilliance Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: June 7, 2016
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01EM6UGDS
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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To Protect and Serve: How to Fix America's Police Audiobook – Unabridged
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Top customer reviews
Norm Stamper on America’s police.
“[It] has a way of chewing up even strong-willed, well-intentioned young officers and spitting them out. Or co-opting them, and taking special pleasure in doing so.”
Norm Stamper on the cop culture.
Whether you’re a thirty-plus year veteran of law enforcement, as I am, or a citizen who knows America’s police only from the media, you should read To Protect and Serve: How to Fix America’s Police. It’s the right book at the right time, and asks some difficult questions. Why do police academies, on average, provide new officers 107 hours of instruction on use of firearms and defensive tactics, but only 16 hours on techniques of de-escalation and crisis intervention? What lasting effect will cell phone cameras and body cameras bring about, if any? Why were the police, city management, city council, prosecutor, and judiciary in Ferguson, Missouri complicit in “policing for profit”? If SWAT teams are designed for hostage, barricaded, and active-shooter situations, why are they used eighty percent of the time for drug raids in a $41 billion per year “bankrupt, no-win drug war”? And why are some 63 million positive contacts each year between the police and citizens undone by fifty-six baton blows to Rodney King in L.A., or a police shooting of a fleeing suspect in South Carolina, or the fatal choking of a misdemeanant in New York, or a deadly rough ride in a police prisoner van in Baltimore?
Norm Stamper, retired San Diego assistant police chief, former Seattle police chief, expert law enforcement witness, and a national speaker for LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) has the impressive credentials to ask such questions. He also provides a prescription on how to “fix” America’s police, now under heavy fire resulting from the succession of controversial police shootings and in-custody deaths. In a self-revealing and disarmingly honest discussion, Stamper sets a compass bearing along a less-traveled road from here to a better place. With a “buckle your seat belt” admonition, he proffers a revolutionary transformation on how America should select, train, and supervise its police officers so that they serve as “peacekeepers” instead of “warriors.” He sees the local community as the senior partner in the community-police partnership, and recommends key roles for women officers and the Federal government in accelerating the transition.
This book will infuriate many and elicit a loud “amen” from others, but few will be unmoved by Stamper’s well-written and persuasive arguments. Thick skinned and well-acquainted with controversy, and in something of a sequel to his first book, Breaking Rank, Stamper’s new book sets forth a provocative point of view that will most certainly stimulate much discussion in the near future. He has lit the torch. Who will try to extinguish it? Who will be willing to carry it?
Seattle Police Assistant Chief, retired
To Protect and Serve is an up to the minute reflection on the wrenching events that, on a regular basis, wound and deform our national life. The Charleston AME Church killings, Earl Garner, Columbine High School, Michael Brown, John T. Rice are all in the book. So are police officers like Brian Moore who were killed in the line of duty or slaughtered just for the hell of it. Stamper recounts it all. When he sees corruption, racism, sociopathy or professional incompetence, he names it and doesn’t excuse or forgive it. Yet he also cites fear, isolation and misdirected training as factors that contribute to the troubled state of police and community relations.
With a span that encompasses Sir Robert Peale and his bobbies and, just this week, retiring Commissioner Bill Bratton of the post-9/11 NYPD, the book looks at many aspects of policing: how officers are trained, why police forces have become so militarized, and how the traditional police response to mental illness has so often ended in tragedy. As unsparing as he is in describing the failures and shortcomings of both the police and their most extreme critics, Stamper does not absolve himself. As Seattle’s top cop, he led the law enforcement response to the 1999 World Trade Organization riots. Stamper accounts for the events that unfolded with perspective (he has had a long time to reflect) and with eloquently expressed regret.
It is from the vantage point of a life spent in law enforcement and in engaging with all aspects of our society that Stamper offers hope for the future. But maybe what To Protect and Serve is ultimately about is humanity: the humanity of the victims of police violence, the humanity of the victims of racism and poverty, the humanity of cops who willingly confront fear and risk their lives on a daily basis, and the humanity of heroic, engaged, compassionate law enforcement officers who are committed to guiding our society to a better, more just and safer place. Throughout, the humanity, intelligence and deep compassion of the author illuminate the perspective and insight of this important book.
Most recent customer reviews
This book doesn’t question enough. A book on police reform needs to pose fundamental questions.Read more
Stamper is an insider - a cop's cop who went from patrolman to chief of department - but he's also an...Read more
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