I saw a preview for a movie last night on TV. The movie’s title eludes me, which is a pity because it is high on my list of movies not to see. The tagline was something like “What does it take to eliminate police corruption?” And then the screen fades to a shot of ex-aikido instructor Steven Seagal pummelling a hapless member of the screen extras guild. I presume that the movie’s premise is that martial arts are an effective tool to eliminate the dishonesty that has taken root in some of our men (and women) in blue.
I believe that the correct way to combat police corruption is by citizen oversight committees, additional training in ethics in police academies, better supervision of police departments, “sting” operations to detect dishonest police officers, and possibly other practices that those better-versed in the subject than I could put forward. It is clear that violence is not the answer. A better movie would have been to see Mr. Seagal poring over police reports, starting a press campaign, and sacrificing hours of time travelling to different community groups and/or police training seminars discussing the harm to society and lack of faith in our institutions arising from the fraudulent practices of a few bad apples. The movie could end with a stirring speech by Mr. Seagal exhorting us to enforce moral values and teach them to our children.
I put it to the intelligent and academic minds of the SDMB. If you had a choice between those two movies (the Hollywood version - a mindless slugfest; or my revised version - a thoughtful examinations of the important issues), which would you go see? Please be honest. No sucking up. I can take the truth. I am confident that my cogent arguments will help you make the right choice.