Smart Ideas: Improve Policing by Making It More Female

A worker lifts materials as construction continues on the new roadway deck of the Bayonne Bridge in Bayonne, N.J. on Nov. 15.
AP Photo/Mel Evans
Add to Briefcase
March 1, 2017, 8 p.m.

Look for more waste than stimulus from Trump's infrastructure plan

Ver­o­nique de Rugy, writ­ing for Reas­on

Amid Pres­id­ent Trump’s call for a $1 tril­lion in­fra­struc­ture bon­anza, we would do well to re­mem­ber that gov­ern­ment “sys­tem­at­ic­ally over­es­tim­ates the be­ne­fits and un­der­es­tim­ates the price of in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects.” Any job growth or eco­nom­ic stim­u­lus from in­fra­struc­ture is pre­dic­ated on “shovel-ready” jobs that can be star­ted as soon as funds are made avail­able. But as Pres­id­ent Obama “dis­covered in 2009 when he tried to spend $47 bil­lion from the Amer­ic­an Re­cov­ery and Re­in­vest­ment Act on in­fra­struc­ture, there aren’t that many shovel-ready pro­jects ly­ing around. And since job seekers rarely have the skills needed to start build­ing a bridge or high­way right away, em­ploy­ers are forced to poach work­ers from their ex­ist­ing jobs.” Rather, we should look to fund such pro­jects through user fees. “That change kills two birds with one stone: It lessens the need for massive fed­er­al ex­pendit­ures, and it gives the private sec­tor an in­cent­ive to spend money on cru­cial but not ex­actly sexy main­ten­ance tasks.”

Trump's address boxed in Republicans

S.V. Date, writ­ing for The Huff­ing­ton Post

Paul Ry­an called Don­ald Trump’s Tues­day night ad­dress to a joint ses­sion of Con­gress “a home run.” However, Ry­an and many of his fel­low Re­pub­lic­ans “may come to re­think that en­thu­si­asm in the com­ing weeks and months … be­cause Trump in many ways boxed in his Cap­it­ol Hill party mates.” When it comes to health care, Trump’s plan in­tro­duced “an im­possible com­bin­a­tion” of more choice, lower costs, and bet­ter health care. “Every prob­lem can be solved,” Trump said. He “should not be sur­prised if the real­ity of mak­ing that hap­pen is a good deal harder than read­ing words off of his tele­prompt­er.”

Democrats need to stop marginalizing themselves

Former Sen. Judd Gregg, writ­ing for The Hill

An at­tack be­ing lobbed at Pres­id­ent Trump is that he “is mar­gin­al­iz­ing him­self by pur­su­ing ini­ti­at­ive after ini­ti­at­ive aimed at the low­est com­mon de­nom­in­at­or among his sup­port­ers.” However, Demo­crats are do­ing the same thing, and likely won’t be gran­ted the pleth­ora of second chances that the of­fice of the pres­id­ency will earn Trump. “People want the party out of power to of­fer up ra­tion­al, use­ful ideas that pass the com­mon-sense test,” and un­for­tu­nately “the Demo­crat­ic Party is well on the way to mar­gin­al­iz­ing it­self as an ef­fect­ive op­pos­i­tion party.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

More women in law enforcement would reduce brutality

Neha Thir­ani Bagri, writ­ing for Quartz

Ex­cess­ive force by po­lice of­ficers, in some cases en­tire po­lice forces, has been a ma­jor story over the past five years. One solu­tion: hire more wo­men po­lice of­ficers. “Mul­tiple stud­ies have shown that fe­male po­lice of­ficers are less likely to re­sort to ex­cess­ive force.” While men of­ten feel the job is to en­force the law, more “fe­male of­ficers see poli­cing as a very im­pact­ful way of help­ing a com­munity solve its prob­lems,” ac­cord­ing to Kath­er­ine Spillar, cofounder of the Na­tion­al Cen­ter for Wo­men & Poli­cing. Po­lice re­cruit­ment needs to re­frame the job de­scrip­tion, go­ing away from pro­mot­ing phys­ic­al force and in­stead en­for­cing cer­tain skill sets, such as com­mu­nic­a­tion and ne­go­ti­ation. An in­crease in wo­men and a de­crease in force could re­store strong com­munity-po­lice re­la­tions, much needed in Amer­ica today.


Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.