Security, Intelligence and Policy

There are evolving approaches all over the world in tackling social insecurity. In deed,   the goal of any police force is to ensure the security of every person. Therefore, measures in improving the police industry are very significant since criminals change tactics everyday. However, the police should consider better ways and programs that will enable them reduce crime and not living out their relationship with the public. It is therefore laudable to observe the recent trends within intelligence led policing which aim to create a generation of community policing with more knowledge-based policing. The broadest term for capturing the most widespread police reform movement aimed at building community police partnerships is community policing (Zhao  Lovrich 2002).

As a result there will be a shift toward a problem-oriented approach and strategic use of information as a basis for management and better use of police resources. This study will review the emergence of knowledge-based policing and its impact on law enforcement. Current debates on risk and the risk society, the broadening or narrowing of the police role, globalization and the importance of networks, and governance and regulation will also be considered.

Emergence of Knowledge-based Policing
It is very impressive to note that intelligence lead policing aims to establish a generation of community policing with more knowledge-based policing. To shed more light on the issue of knowledge based policing a look at knowledge-based public order policing will be significant. The dictum that mob practices have no rationality makes it hard to trust a crowd in whatever event they get involved in especially in the public domain. A conglomeration of a large number of crowds is viewed as a threat and an offence in law. Police will be quick in dispatching crowds in the streets due to their perceived potential in carrying out criminal activities. By and large public order policing is still pegged on the perception that mobs are by nature devoid of reason and very harmful. However, this belief is misguided and serves as a recipe to policing interventions that occasion more violence and malicious inclinations in the crowds (Reicher et al. 2007).

This traditional connotation of mob psychology needs some improvement in that crowds can be turned into opportunities of peace and security. Therefore, policing can turn crowds into more responsible crowds and with fewer inclinations to criminal activities. In other words, the policing administered to them can be rephrased such that it becomes a society characterized by self-policed crowds. In this regard, no much police force will be needed to quell the crowds since they already identify with the policing programs and structures. For example, crowds take the initiative in fostering public safety and in such organizations there can be no breeding of criminals. By analogy, community policing is like draining water from a fish pond rendering the life of the fish therein impossible. In this case fish represent the criminals hiding in the crowds.

In this regard such knowledge-based crowd policing becomes a guide in making crowd events prospects of civil obedience and not civil disobedience therefore reducing intractable conflicts between the police and groups within the society. This radical expression of community policing is captured in the idea of a co-production of safe communities (Bazemore  Griffiths 2003), involving a significant shift in power from the police to community groups in safety enterprises (Barley 1994).

Whenever one mention the term policing what comes into mind is the public dynamics. In other words, policing necessarily invites the idea of crowds in a public framework. For example, policing will direct so much on people in the streets or towns other than two or three or four citizens having a cup of tea in the restaurant. Policing is to a large extent intertwined with the efforts in maintenance of public order. Why then does public order policing major on crowd events (Reicher et al., 2007). To respond to Reicher and others, it was mentioned earlier that there is a perceived view of the public as the real cause of disorder in the society. In fact, the use of public order policing is founded on the association of the mob with public disorder.

The connotation in public order policing hinders the possibility of considering police operations as also avenues to criminal activities in the social fabric. Just as how the public is considered a recipe for disorder so should the police. In this regard, little attention is given in the development of strategies, tactics and technologies that can reduce the risks in such a dilemma in deed, the police-crowd dilemma in respect to who is the cause of disorder in the society. If more emphasis is laid upon the crowds as the perpetuators of disorder living out the police, then it will lead to a state with suppressed crowds this can instill hostility in the people and from here the journey of defiance and calls for mass actions begin across the board. This mainly will take place in any sober and affluent democratic society.

The police forget that crowds have rights and when they are determined to fight for them nothing can stop them not even use of force by the police themselves to them. Robins (1984) gives a reflection on the scenario of Manchester funs and the teams chairman. The chairman out rightly termed his funs as animals and in turn the funs in the next match responded with chants describing that they hate humans. From this example, it can be noticed that the crowd react angrily, mockingly, and in the opposite direction. This is exactly how crowds respond to the policing measures of the day. If the police force them to be in their homes by evening, they react by being outside late in the evening if the police forcefully make them carry their identity cards they respond by not carrying their identity cards.  They will do the opposite hence creating serious public disorder. This is what translates into civil disobedience. Literally, it becomes a situation where if they are supposed to stand they sit and if they are supposed to sit they stand.

As indicated earlier long it is possible to work on a more amicable relationship between police and the crowds such that their relationship is no longer a police-crowd at war situation. As in, the era of crowds running helter skelter whenever a police patrol appears ends ushering in a new era where crowds feel free and even chat with the police and more importantly present the police with proposals on how to improve order in the society. In this regard, the crowds become the eyes of the police. Therefore, an informed understanding of the mob psychology can be re-evaluated in order to come up with other better forms of policing that promote coherence and co-existence rather than chaos and conflicts.

To deepen further on the concept of knowledge-based public policing, it is significant to note that individuals at some point seize to identify themselves in their cocoons but transfer their center of identity to the large collegiality of the people around himher. This fact is what catalyses the mob this is what energizes them in doing whatever they are determined to do together. The movement of the individual person from hisher identity to social identity is the rationale behind the possibility of group behavior (Turner 1982). To elucidate further on this argument, consider the following scenario. Fifty customers are in a restaurant having their meals quietly. The environment is very calm and so, every customer is busy with hisher affairs. No customer is even looking at the other nor smiling at the other simply because they are strangers. All of a sudden the restaurant manager exclaims that the meals that have been served are expired and that the customers need to re-order fresh meals immediately and free of charge. All of a sudden, they begin talking to each other, sharing their opinions about it and even laughing out. It now becomes an interactive environment compared to the former situation.

This interaction strengthens the social systems in a state such that every individual person feels obligated in safeguarding the well-being of the other person next to himher. This fire spreads across the social stream where every person sees the value of defending common good. The communities realize that they need one another and have a duty towards one another. This understanding is very vital in the measures put in place in dealing with lawlessness. Policing of whatever kind should base itself on this fundamental fact. Again, this re-emphasizes the observation above that the relationship between police and the crowds can be an amicable one. This makes it possible to have a community policing with knowledge-based policing. This shift is only feasible if it is grounded on this fact, that a crowd can unite and observe common good within the framework of the set laws in the penal code. This social responsibility consciousness becomes a major instrument in the orchestration of a responsible and law-abiding community.

Knowledge-based policing and Law Enforcement
By and large the social identities play a significant role in the policing approach applied by the security intelligence. It is worth noting that, whenever there a social group is established it is accompanied by beliefs and set of guidelines which in turn govern these groups. Crowd course of action is not merely spontaneous nor does it take place in a vacuum. It is characterized by strict conformity of certain beliefs and regulations within the group (Thompson 1971 Reddy 1977 Davis 1978). Further to this, even in those moments that the crowds are hostile, the rationale behind their hostility not excluding the objects of this hostility and the nature or manner of the attacks again to this objects-is a manifestation of the beliefs or convictions identified with the said crowd.

It is also very important to note that crowds operate differently from other groups in a given community. This is because crowds never carry out their operations or deliberations in the open or in a conference room they have no formal modalities in this respect hence their operations remain mysterious. The quest of establishing valid interpretation on the group action becomes more volatile and more complex, more fraught compared to any other situation (Reicher 1984). The most important point here is that it is not easy to predict the appropriate course of action to take in order to lessen the chances of triggering a hostile crowd or better still, collective violence. No wonder why despite the need to nurture a self-policed community, police will tend to dominate in the whole process. Wood et al.note that while community policing programs provide a possible means for mobilizing civic participation in the generation of security, police agencies generally tend to take the lead role in such endeavors (2006). They have held onto modern identities as the central agency, even within multi-agency policing and safety networks.

Turning now to the practice of knowledge-based public policing in the society, here will see how the police can build their operations on the principles of social groups and identities discussed previously. It is of great value if the police take into consideration the identities of the crowds. Here, the police take cognizance of the set of guidelines inherent in these social groups. In other words, they become the windows through which they carry out their policing activities. Knowledge-based public order policing commences within the frame of the information regarding this social identities.

The police should focus mainly on strategic responses to crowds events that are geared towards maximizing the objectives of the crowds. This almost sounds a contradiction. Well, this does not mean that police should sympathize with lawlessness or flawed activities, no they must maintain law and order at all times. It is true that some of the mobs intend to engage in illegal activities which the police should never permit but there are those crowds that seek to champion their objectives in a legal and moral approach. By not interfering with this process, the police will gain recommendable cooperation from the crowd and even get assistance from the very crowd in dealing with those small groups that carry out illegal activities. However, the police cannot achieve this if they do not understand the conscience of the group. Here, the conscience connotes the belief system of the group.

However and to a large extent, some of the explications above pose practical dilemmas and especially to the police in ensuring that the legal aims of the crowds do not invite illegitimate aims in the same crowd. To shed more light to this argument consider the following example. Crowds may take to the streets in order to express their discomfort on the governments intention in starting war like in the case of U.S. war in Afghanistan. People feel it is not the right and legal thing to do and so they demonstrate towards the office of the Defense Secretary. The police will do a good thing if they let the demonstrations take place but on the other hand, they might fear that demonstrations past the office of the Defense Secretary may occasion theft, burglaries and disruption and so on and so forth. See now, there is a dilemma between legal aims and illegitimate aims with the same crowd. In this case, it is advisable that the police liaise with the organizers or leaders of such crowds. They can jointly work together and ensure that law and order is maintained in the whole demonstration process.  The police must emphasize that they will not permit any defiant activities and illegitimate course of actions. In this context the crowds will feel respected and will not regard the police presence as an impediment but as an empowerment.

This approach by the police to the crowds as illustrated in the above example creates harmony in how both camps perceive each other. The crowds will proudly identify themselves with the police and by the way, making it easy for the police in their task. The crowds will actually dissuade the rest of the group to maintain law and order. They will not let their colleagues carry out criminal activities as they will denounce them out rightly. This way, no malicious gangs can cohabit in the crowds or better still, the crowds will no longer be a hid-out place where illegal and illegitimate acts are premeditated and executed. The essential thing in such policing is showing respect to the participants and in cases when some carry out illegitimate operations the police should ensure that it does not invite others to the same. This prudence from the police extends to the tools they use. Luckily, police are rational beings so they can control themselves and besides that, they can make judgments. However, the guns they use or the missiles they use or the bombs they use cannot make judgments. In other words, whenever a police officer fires a gun, the bullet does not take time to identify who is a criminal or who is not a criminal it lands on both the innocent and the criminal. It is evident in the society today of families who mourn their loved ones after they are shot by the police normally the claims are that their loved ones were shot and yet they were innocent. In this regard, technology used in aiding the police in the policing operations should not be an occasion where they exercise their mandate irrationally. Well, it is dubious to have a bullet that after been fired it stops on the way and goes back to the gun after noticing that it had been directed to the wrong target. The point here, however, is that technology in the policing industry should try to create tools that do not just aim to kill every body.

It is a widely held view that the greatest enemies or threats to the police are the youths. Police policy and practice in regard to young people by and large re-affirms the assertion that young ones need to be transformed and that the elder ones have the means to transform them, especially by adjusting their cognitive faculties and punishing them as deterrence (Casella 2002). Theoretically, restorative policing plays a major role in dissuading the general public to be involved in the promotion and maintenance of public safety. It is incumbent upon the community to promote reconciliation and co-existence among themselves while police agencies encourage and make it possible for them in this endeavor. By supporting the community in this role, police organizations devote maximum attention and resources to community building that aim at mobilizing and enhance the communitys skills and confidence in informal responses to crime. Restorative policing seems to be the next obvious step in community policing and police reform, it seems.

There are efforts in policy movements of different countries in trying to involve the youths in policing and security governance. This assertion is echoed by Cislowski (2002) when he notes on the use of the term youth citizenship in countries like Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada. He writes further that youth citizenship is found within educational and local government policy as a way of awakening and mobilizing young people in being actively involved in their everyday lives. The discourse of citizenship puts more weight in the attempt at including young people in plans to prevent violence, risk and crime (Shaw et al. 2002).

However, though the idea of youth citizenship continues to shape the social and public policy of these communities, doubts still revolve as to whether they are able to articulate on the matters touching on the young peoples destinies. In other words, it is still not easy to delegate public issues to the youths considering that they still are in the stage of self-discovery where there can be no consistency or stability in choices.

It can be argued and justifiably so that the main objects of the police are the youths in any social system. The police are quick to respond to crimes where the youths are involved and less where there are other ages like children or elderly people in their middle ages, for instance. In line with this, when women take to the streets hardly will you see police try to prevent them from the demonstrations. In fact, such an instance is brushed-off. Whenever it is a riot by a group of youths, police respond instantly and with all the weapons possible. It is almost the case that police exist for the sake of the youths. Or better still police institutions exist to deal with the youths in the society. The overall tone in policing has the youths as the object of study, it seems. While it is true that the young people are more inclined to commit malicious acts considering that they are young, energetic, flexible and swift and above all, in their stage of self-discovery that can lure them in creating havoc in the public safety. Their energy for instance, can lure them to burglarize a building and even destroy every thing in it their flexibility and swiftness can make them escape the police by making good runs contrary to what their parents or grandparents would do.

Turning back to the principles of youth citizenship above where the youth are instead made to be the eyes of the community as far as policing and public safety is concerned it can still work when the police institutions take into account the inherent potentialities in the youths. Recall what was mentioned earlier long that the police ought to understand the beliefs and systems governing a particular group or crowd before executing its policing mandate. In still the same way, they ought to understand the mind set and the governing system of the youths. Why not turn their energy, flexibility or swiftness, and their struggle for self-discovery into something useful in promotion of public safety Instead of using their energy to destroy property they can convert it into defense skills that in turn destroy the criminals.

To give even a more comic example, instead of taking advantage of their swiftness and flexibility in escaping the police through good runs, they can use this swiftness and flexibility in chasing after thieves. In deed, this example sounds funny but it tries to drive a very essential point here. That much is not in the physical reaction of the youths to crime but it is more in changing their attitude. They need to feel that the fight against public disorder is not only for their own good as youths but it is their responsibility. Therefore a heavy police presence in learning institutions like universities or colleges should not seem as if it is against the youths but should be an invitation to them in being agents of public safety. The presence of the police should be a direct invitation to the youths in the contribution of good policing governance and execution.

Policing as such aims also at establishing truth and this is why law enforcers need structures and guidelines just like anybody else. In this regard, evidence-based policing majors its assertions and assumptions on facts and not merely stories with an aim to reduce crime rate in the society. It also structures the thinking processes of the law enforcers hence inculcating in them a more critical approach to social crimes. However, this aspect of channeling operations of the law enforcers to a given structured systems may deter them from fully exercising their mandate. This is also because they are prevented from expressing their views and opinion.

From the onset, we have shown the relationship between the public and the police. We have also strongly emphasized on the need to have a public-police relationship and in deed a friendly relationship. In this regard, crowds or any conglomeration of a people say, a group of street protestors or youths should never be regarded as security threats but should be seen as opportunities for safety. This in my opinion is the greatest civilization that a state can attain. Civilization exists in those states where people see the police as friends and not as enemies as this is the widely held perception globally. You will bear me witness that there are people who are always on the run whenever they see the police around them. They run away with no apparent reason and yet they are not criminals. I agree that sometimes police do create this fear and attitude especially in the youths and it does not help. To reiterate, fear of the police does not imply that people are law-abiding rather it is a manifestation of immaturity as citizens. Communities should join the police and as such be 100 involved in the policing endeavors. Communities should be the eyes of the police.

But these assertions as explicated in our study should not imply that community-based policing is a replacement of the role of the police, no it is just the recognition that maintenance of law and order is a collective responsibility where police only play 40 role and the 60 is played by the public. I agree that maximum safety cannot be achieved by the police forces only since they are not super humans, they need the help of other citizens. The notion of knowledge-based policing is essentially the invitation of the entire family of a given community to consider taking part in their safety. They need to be involved since the battle is complex and needs other expertise that can only be attained through their cooperation with the police.


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