Pacifica Institute of Los Angeles was honored to host LAPD Chief Deputy, Michael Downing, who shared his insights regarding the topic of, “Policing Convergent Threats of the 21st Century”.
The traditional role of law enforcement, the Chief Deputy said, was dealing with murders, robberies, and narcotics, amongst other crimes of that nature, but post 9/11 the role of law enforcement has evolved to complement the role of national security.
The Chief Deputy suggests that we must take advantage of the “many approach”, which consists of two components, the first component being the ability to comprehend the opponent’s intent and capability. The second component consists of getting the public involved. Outreach and engagement should be our method, especially to those communities who feel isolated, balkanized, or discontent. As a nation it is our responsibility to reach out and do what we can to, not by assimilating, but by integrating all communities into our pluralistic society. We need to find a way to be able to inspire, motivate and liberate communities to help protect the homeland. A model must be created, said Chief Deputy, for the rest of the world that involves dialogue and discussions, leaning on our constitution. “Our constitution is out shield, the people are our strength,” said Chief Deputy Downing.
Americans must become more conscious of the global world outside the miles that encompass the United States. “What happens in Pakistan during breakfast, can be felt here during lunchtime,” and that is because people from those offshore countries are here, they feel the affects of those countries. Our strength is our diaspora from all over the word.
Having worked closely with the Muslim American community over the past seven-eight years and trying to develop what it means to be a Muslim American, the Muslim community has denounced terrorism and violence completely and have said ISIL or ISIS is barbaric and inhumane and does not represent Islam. Chief Deputy reiterated the importance of outreach and involvement as a combatant against terrorism.
The talk was preceded by a Q&A where Chief Deputy Michael Downing answered many questions regarding our youth and how to address their attraction to terrorist organization. Chief Deputy stated that parents along with community leaders play a critical role in the protection of the youth. It is our responsibility to know what our youth is looking at on the internet, where they are getting their news, because groups like ISIS know where to look for vulnerability, but it is our responsibility to provide guidance.
Pacifica Institute would like to thank Chief Deputy Michael Downing for joining us to discuss the policing of convergent threats of the 21st century. We would also like to thank all of our guests for their attendance and participation.