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Thu Jun 11, 2020, 03:07 PM

'Qualified immunity' puts police above the law

By Noah Feldman / Bloomberg Opinion

The Justice in Policing Act of 2020 introduced by House Democrats this week contains a provision that is likely to become the subject of lively debate: The provision effectively eliminates the legal defense known as “qualified immunity” for state and local police who get sued for violating citizens’ civil rights.

The proposal is extremely important from a symbolic perspective. The U.S. Supreme Court has used the doctrine in recent years to send a message to lower courts that it wants less litigation against police.

Now is the time for Congress to send the opposite message. Lawmakers should make it clear that police should not be “immune” from responsibility when they break the Constitution.

The doctrine of qualified immunity muddies the principle of equal justice under law. Nor is qualified immunity contained in the text of any federal statute. It was invented by the Supreme Court in a series of cases, most importantly the 1982 decision of Harlow v. Fitzgerald.

https://www.heraldnet.com/opinion/commentary-qualified-immunity-puts-police-above-the-law/

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Reply 'Qualified immunity' puts police above the law (Original post)
Yo_Mama_Been_Loggin Jun 11 OP
The Magistrate Jun 11 #1
soothsayer Jun 11 #2

Response to Yo_Mama_Been_Loggin (Original post)

Thu Jun 11, 2020, 03:42 PM

1. It Has To Be Done, Sir

The standard for exculpation must be that a reasonable man would agree the violence employed was necessary, not whether the officer at the time thought it right and proper. Police complain about being second-guessed, and split-second decisions and all the rest of it, but people entrusted with arms and the power of arrest in the name of the state ought to be second-guessed by citizens when they behave outrageously, and people who make split-second decisions about life and death cannot be allowed mistakes. Break a man's skull, shoot him or strangle him, you had damned well better be right. And if you aren't, at the very minimum you should be out of the profession in disgrace so deep people would welcome a leprous pimp into their homes before they would speak to you in the street.

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Response to Yo_Mama_Been_Loggin (Original post)

Thu Jun 11, 2020, 03:57 PM

2. "Non-starter" for drumpf

If his opinion matters at all.

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