Last Updated on February 17, 2022
Polls reveal that the African American community does not want their local police department to be “defunded” or “abolished” as is being demanded by Black Lives Matter, but instead want the police to maintain or grow their numbers instead, and the same sentiment is shared by all Americans.
Despite the Twitter pleadings of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), who called for the Minneapolis police to “disband” and then “reimagine” in the name of social justice, the majority of African Americans has never wanted and does not want the police to leave their community.
The Minneapolis Police Department has proven themselves beyond reform.
It’s time to disband them and reimagine public safety in Minneapolis.
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) June 5, 2020
This sentiment, despite being unpopular, is being shouted by Black Lives Matter protesters, who loudly booed the Minneapolis mayor when he refused to endorse defunding the police.
According to the Gallup poll, released on August 6, 2015, even though the African American community was split on whether police treat them fairly, a total of 92 per cent of poll respondents indicated they are either comfortable with the current number of police or would prefer additional police.
33 per cent of African Americans want a higher police presence in their community, and interestingly, of those African Americans who specifically believe that they are treated unfairly by police, 44 per cent want a larger police presence in their community.
59 per cent of African Americans want the current number of police to be maintained, leaving only 8 per cent calling for less police.
This is also true for white and Hispanic Americans. Among whites, 94 per cent want the same or more police, and among Hispanics, 95 per cent want the same or more police.
These results appear not to have changed wildly in the intervening five years, as a now famous YouGov poll reveals that despite the constant haranguing of Black Lives Matter protesters across the country, only 16 per cent of Americans want the police to be defunded:
Despite calls by activists and protesters to defund police departments, most Americans do not support reducing law enforcement budgets. Close to two-thirds (65%) oppose cutting police force funding. Just 16 percent of Democrats and 15 percent of Republicans support that idea.
While the number of those who want less or “defunded” police has grown from 7 per cent to 16 per cent in five years, it remains a minority view only held by a select few.
As was indicated in 2015, there is, however, bipartisan support for expanding police education and resources when it comes to deescalating conflicts, identifying potential bad police officers, and increasing to use of body cameras to record the behavior of police and the public they interact with.