Police in the left-leaning city of Denver are calling out school officials who presented to students at a high school a video that warned them off of calling authorities if they saw “racist” or “transphobic” situations.
“While it is commendable of school administration to educate students relative to possible responses to racial attacks at school, it is reprehensible of them to include a tip that specifically states not to contact police while simultaneously telling students they should put themselves front and center of the exchange,” said a statement from the Denver Police Foundation.
“Sharing this advice is irresponsible as, first and foremost, there are bias-motivated acts that are mandatory report situations and delayed reporting causes more harm to the victim. It also puts students in situations they are not trained to handle. Additionally, it discourages cooperation of the victim, potentially leading to no accountability of the offender and their behavior, and lastly, it portrays officers as the problem in the situation.”
It is the Denver Gazette that reported on the showing of the video, “Don’t be a Bystander: 6 Tips for Responding to Racist Attacks.”
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Its point number 4 “explicitly warns against calling the police in case of a racist or transphobic attack,” the report said.
One of the claims in the video, the Gazette explained, is that “law enforcement officers have been trained to view members of minority groups as ‘perpetrators of violence.'”
The narrator charges that, “Armed police presence often escalates, rather than reduces, the risk of violence in a situation. Because police have been trained to see people of color, gender non-conforming folks and Muslims as criminals, they often treat victims as perpetrators of violence.”
The messaging adds: “So, if the victim hasn’t asked you to call the police, do not – I repeat – do not call the police.”
South High Principal Rachel Goss said the “intention” was to empower people “who may witness these types of attacks,” the Gazette reported.
The publication explained, “The incident is the latest in a tumultuous relationship between Denver Public Schools and law enforcement. The DPS Board of Education voted in 2020 to remove school resource officers from campuses. On its website, Denver South describes itself as committed to being ‘anti-racist’ and to ‘dismantling systemic and structural racism in education, creating academic access, and facilitating success to black and all students of color.'”
The video starts out complaining about the “long history of violence” against people of color, disabled, Muslims and others in America.
The Police Foundation said, “Showing a video that states ‘police have been trained to see people of color, gender nonconforming folks and Muslims as criminal’ and that ‘they often treat victims as perpetrators of violence’ is not only a blatant misrepresentation of the training received by the Denver Police Department and law enforcement as a whole, but it also encourages anti police attitudes.”