For a long time, black Americans have been claiming that such things happen and were widely ignored or disbelieved. It was and is a grave error - I can't imagine how many victims there are. This raises critical questions:
1) Why did our society make this error?
2) How do we prevent making the same mistake in the future, regarding other issues?
3) About what issues are we making the same mistake right now?
Also: What do we do about the legions of victims? Ignoring them yet again would be a crime.
1) Police are corrupt. Maybe not all of them, but enough of them that "police are corrupt" is true. This will always be the case.
Police don't fight crime, nor prevent it. They create it. If you think this isn't so you haven't had enough exposure to them.
Maybe my opinion is coloured by my experience: illegal search of person, car, and house. They ransacked my house, stole money and property from me. It took 27 months to have the case dismissed nolle prosequi and my money returned to me.
If you see the police, cross the street.
Police are like the proverbial bull in a china shop. There may be a need one day to call on that bull, but they'll probably leave one hell of a mess, and hope you don't get trampled in the process.
There was a great post a couple weeks on the front page about a guy traveling through Germany I think it was, for a contracting software gig. He got detained on the bus because a cop "smelled pot" and you can imagine how the story went from there. His biggest personal takeaway was exactly as you say, treating people like this must be creating an awful lot of criminals.
There may be cops out there who still believe they are civil servants, and stewards of our constitutional rights. Who understand the terrible power they wield, and insist on always operating within the law. Who arrest civilians as a last resort. Eh, who am I kidding? 'Protect and Serve' changed to 'Shoot to Kill' a long time ago.
BTW, if that's your #1, I'm almost afraid to read your #2 and #3!
Not racist like we're out in klan hoods on the weekend, and it's definitely not like we're consciously choosing to be racist--this is just lifetimes of unexamined biases, media information, etc. We have these little biases that tell us not to trust the black guy's word and that adds up over time.
Overcoming that shit is hard.
They say the least reliable form of testimony is eyewitness accounts. Actually, I think the police have the eyewitness beat on this account. Too bad I've never had jury duty, and even if I did I'd probably be dismissed, so unfortunately I'll never get my chance as one of the 12 angry jurists to apply this in practice.
It seems like there are more and more like-minded people who will outright dismiss the grand-standing Detective and insist on just the facts please. Show me actual proof because your word is truly worthless.
When an IA officer testifies against one of their own fabricating evidence, I can be sure it is testimony that they are thoroughly unhappy about giving and not particularly self-serving. Therefore, more trustworthy. Somehow I doubt, for example, that the IA department operates under quotas and driven by officer-arrest stats.
In those cases. Not in tons of others, where it took a lawsuit or some investigation started from an independent organization (NGO etc), or even pure chance, to bring misconducts to light. "Internal Affairs" people are notoriously not popular with regular police.
The only reason anyone is aware of this story is because it was officers who took it upon themselves to leak the record and are agreeing to testify.
This shouldn't be necessary, but I probably need to point out that not every single black person has a lower intelligence than every single white person. It's just the average. Some black individuals have higher IQs than some white individuals, of course. Which means that solutions like segregation/apartheid are ham-fisted and totally unfair to these high IQ blacks.
For more info on the IQ and race thing, I recommend the book IQ and the Wealth of Nations by Richard Lynn and Tatu Vanhanen.
On the Internet, that isn't really true. There are always enough people who can be convinced of the merit of an idea, and so extreme groups continue to grow in size. As they do this, the overlap between any given extreme group and other groups grows, because the extreme group is growing. This means that their ideas metastasize out into the population as a whole.
Scientific racism, neo-reactionaryism, monarchism, even just defiant "political incorrectness" and "I'm no SWJ"-ness. The heightened availability of all of these ideas produces the same, as group polarization (a technical term in social psychology) happens on a scale never before seen. This is hardly limited to the right wing; liberal-identified Tumblr users are more behaviourally restrictive than most of the anarchist-communists I knew in college, even though the "safe-space" rhetoric of the current liberal milieu originates from more radical activist circles.
Expect to see more scientific racism on hacker news; hacker news is a fundamentally more friendly platform for racist and misogynistic viewpoints because women and people of color are so underrepresented and the focus on "objectivity" and "data" mean that a shoddy study that is the very essence of scientific racism can beat out the stories of however many women or PoC dare to speak out, only to be shouted down.
Most of the people making these comments would probably be fairly reasonable had you both been born 20 years earlier (or possibly later, if the world grows more sane) and met at a party. Few people set out to become a scientific racist, they just see an article linked (possibly by a Stormfront member, who knows) that "just makes sense to them"; they believe it and internalize it; when they see future statements they are more likely to remember those they agree with and forget those that disagree with their existing outlook; gradually, they become more and more "awakened" to the "racial reality" of the world until finally they're posting on Neoreactionary News about how they've finally realized democracy is degenerate and women should never have been allowed to vote.
And those people write your software.
Worried is the least you should be.
Another fun factoid. IQ isn't static and is a fairly useless measure of intelligence.
> Not racist like we're out in klan hoods on the weekend,
Usually I would never generalize the actions of a subset to the entire group, but in this case there is a key difference that justifies "(all/most) police are corrupt": the failure to clean their own house of the "bad apples". When a supposedly "good" policeman gives cover and protection to a criminal in their department instead of reporting the crime, they become an accomplice. in many cases, protecting the guilty may even be a crime in itself (misprision of felony).
In the US, this is not true. The police, at large, are there to control a situation and assign blame. Investigation is to those ends.
Do you honestly think that this is a fair statement?
Your analogy falls down when you apply that to race.
Black people are not responsible for the safety of the citizenry, black people are not defined by the need to protect and serve us, black people are in fact, just people.
Cops on the other hand are responsible for the safety of the citizenry, are given special powers due to the additional trust and responsibility we (all the other people) grant them.
The comparison is ridiculous.
Indeed. It's very rare for people to call local gang/NCAAP/#BLM/ACORN/other black orgs when police breaks into their house. The opposite, though, happens all the time.
"Gangs commit crime" is sort of a truism, but for the others... that's going to take some evidence.
I'll be waiting, but not holding my breath. At a minimum, your statement lacks nuance. At worst, and more likely, it is factually incorrect and smears groups with legitimate goals.
"The opposite, though, happens all the time."
The original claim is 'police break into houses and no one calls local gang/NCAAP/#BLM/ACORN/other black orgs.' The opposite claim is therefore that '"local gang/NCAAP/#BLM/ACORN/other black orgs" break into houses and people call the police'. I've conceded that local gangs may break into houses, and now I'm asking you to justify the assertion that "NCAAP/#BLM/ACORN/other black orgs" (it's NAACP, BTW) break into houses. Do you have sources that show that people operating under the NCAAP/#BLM banner actually break into houses? If you don't have information that suggests that, why do you make such an offhanded claim?
How is this trolling? How is this not a good faith argument? My distillation of your claims is that "blacks commit crimes, so black special interest groups must also be bastions of criminality." If that's not your point, then what is?
We're not in short supply of proposals, so what's the point? Everyone has ideas like this, they're meaningless because they don't address the problem, cops don't police themselves and never will.
>As early as 1998, other police officers lodged complaints regarding their beliefs that police officers were planting evidence.
In other words officers were policing themselves to the point of triggering Internal Investigations. Nevertheless, if the parents proposal has no point, and you have identified the problem, what is your proposed solution?
It's 2015, lodging complaint's that go nowhere for nearly two decades isn't "policing" themselves; arresting their fellow police officers for breaking the law is policing themselves and that's extremely rare. The thin blue line is a real thing, cops shun cops who rat on cops and since cops tend to only hang out with other cops, or fireman, being shunned matters. Civilians in general don't like hanging around with cops so it's a very segregated little culture.
> In other words officers were policing themselves to the point of triggering Internal Investigations.
Meaningless ploys to cover their asses that nearly always end in nothing being found.
I used to be a cop, I've known hundreds of cops because of this, in general (meaning yes there are exceptions) they're idiots and jocks who take the job because they get paid to be bullies and they like the power. They don't give a shit about your rights or you at all, they care about their stats and how they rank in comparison with each other.. who got more busts, it's like a sport to them. They compete. It wasn't for me, I switched to IT.
> if the parents proposal has no point, and you have identified the problem, what is your proposed solution?
As I said, identifying the problem isn't the issue, never has been. There is no solution to police corruption other than the public getting fed up with them and firing them all; they will not police themselves, internal affairs is a joke, and even the good cops generally keep quite in order to not be ostracized. Time and again cops are caught doing bad things, suspended for "investigation", and the investigation finds no wrongdoing after the media storm has died down and the cop is put back on the streets.
Police are corrupt; that's simply life.
One could serve 17 years in jail in that time.
My point is parent stated that officers are the problem because they won't police one another, not that officer complaints are ineffective (seemly a fair distinction). So I asked parent what his proposed solution was, and he explained the solution is to fire all police because they are inherently corrupt. I'm not taking a position, I am curious about the thought process. Do you believe as a society we are better off without police too?
That's because they knew there would be no consequences to be scared of.
Honest police may feel it's in their interest. It protects them from false accusations, and from leal and reputational consequences of being associated with dishonest associates. Being honest, they might also want to see dishonest, criminal actions stopped and punished.
Its dehumanizing and eats away at the core of any intelligent person wanting to ever be a cop.
The camera should be on in any situation that might later be a subject of dispute. If it's off in such a situation, the courts should consider that a reason to disbelieve the cop who turned it off. A cop who doesn't possess the judgement to operate a camera, probably doesn't possess the judgement to carry a firearm either.
I subscribe to the notion that cops absolutely need to be held to a higher standard, esp. given their potential for exponentially causing harm (because guns and LE powers).
> Honest police may feel it's in their interest.
> How do we prevent making the same mistake in the future, regarding other issues?
> About what issues are we making the same mistake right now?
- Drugs are a classic victimless crime; prosecutions tend not to be motivated by someone filing a complaint. Rather, it is the responsibility of the police to detect the crime and mete out punishment as they see fit.
- Society has reward processes in place for police who identify and punish drug offenders.
Those two are sufficient for a lot of abuse. There are some aggravating circumstances:
- It's easy for the cops to prey on low social classes, because they don't report to them. The higher social classes aren't really interested in what's going on elsewhere. A doctor's kid is unlikely to be the victim of planted drugs, and so is the doctor. That's not because doctors' kids aren't using so many drugs, it's because the police aren't really supposed to deal with the higher classes at all.
I see some other commenters saying that, e.g., society is always driven (at least in significant part) by racial tensions. While I don't actually disagree, I think this is at root an issue of social class rather than race directly. Police preying on a community of white-collar professionals will be reformed.
Since these communities don't have the political power to get rid of predatory police, the police are acting without supervision. It shouldn't be surprising that they do what they feel like.
I agree with much of the rest of your comment, and in the past I would have agreed with this as well. However, police are not inherent to the human condition. (We haven't always had police, and with luck we'll be rid of them soonish.) When police were created, it was largely for basically racist purposes, even if the "races" under consideration in many locales were "Irish" and "Italian". (Further south, however...) People would have objected to a police force imposed on everyone, so the trick was to impose it mostly on those who didn't control the public purse or the courts.
A society that relies on relentless, capricious violence to compel large swathes of the population to accept their assigned roles is not pareto-optimal. We will improve when we change our laws with the goal of reducing the necessity of policing.
Ok, but I think this is a reflection of different races falling en masse into different social classes. If you're in Italy and your city has natives, gypsies, african laborers, jews, and persian merchants (note: stylized example, not necessarily reflective of any historical events), I'd expect the police might be called into being as a defense (or, depending on your perspective, offense) against the gypsies and africans, while at the same time people largely didn't care about the jews and persians (from a policing perspective). They'd be dealt with more by the taxing authorities.
If the police were an expression of racism, I'd expect something different.
But think it through further, please. Why do different races fall into different classes? There is more than one reason! For your average racist fuck, the answer is "because race". But TPTB are not all, nor even primarily, average racist fucks. Like "race", "class" is an invention that allows elites to control and extract rent from the rest of us. Classes seem to the average person to be more contingent categories than races, so the concept of race is used to bolster that of class. It's easier to convince a poor white dude to oppress poor black dudes than it would be to convince him to oppress poor dudes in general.
Also, don't expect policing to conform to reasoned expectations. It is more effective for its real purpose of controlling and extracting rent from the rest of society, because it is capricious and unpredictable.
You argued (as I understand things) that the motivation for forming the police was usually "racist", and that it made more sense to view the depredations of police as race issue than a class issue.
I counter that in a society of several racial groups, some poor and some wealthy, I think the police would be expected to spend their energies on the poor groups while leaving the wealthy ones alone. To me, this is evidence that the police are a social-class based instrument rather than a race-based instrument, because if they were an expression of racism they'd be expected to spend their energies on aliens while leaving natives alone (in this analysis, Jews who have been resident for centuries but maintain their own separate culture are "aliens", not "natives").
You say that the different treatment of racial groups according to what social class they belong to is just more racism. You can call it that, but the label stops being useful -- if the police are a "racist" institution, by this definition, you can't predict anything about how they'll treat someone even knowing the race of that person, or knowing whether their race differs from the race of the police they're interacting with, or whether it differs from the race of the group running the police, or any such thing. You have to know their race and the position their race occupies in society. But the social position is doing all the work -- your predictions will be nearly as good if all you know is the personal social standing of the person interacting with the police. Race is a sideshow.
Why is treating different races differently because they have very different social standing primarily an issue of race rather than social standing?
Your example seems to be a largely static one, which is neither realistic nor particularly illuminating. Policing like any "modern" phenomenon is relatively recent, so we should examine the entire narrative of effects rather than taking a snapshot and presuming it to encompass the whole range of possible experience.
Race admits to much less mobility than most other pretexts for oppression. That is bad because it makes society less agile, and because it kills hope and confidence. Both of those emotions are entirely beneficial, so their loss in any subgroup is harmful.
2) Develop systems that are structurally uncorruptable and uninfluencable as best as they can be, by having significant separations of power by design. There must be no incentive for those with the power to audit to be influenced by those they're auditing.
3) Probably many, scarily enough. Corruption runs deep in many societies that tend not to be considered corrupt.
In this case, I like the idea that the officers should be sentenced to prison at some level proportionate to the amount of corruption they were responsible for. The wrongly imprisoned should be released, and the State responsible for implementing the auditing controls against these officers should be forced to provide the wrongly imprisoned the average (for a given value of average) wage, or a multiple thereof to account for additional damages, for the entirety of the time they were wrongfully convicted and imprisoned for. That way, there's a personal incentive not to be corrupt in that if you get caught you are heavily personally punished for said corruption, and there's a strucutral incentive to implement effective anti-corruption controls as the state is then responsible for those that represent it.
Oh kind of like The Constitution, for example? Obviously that hasn't worked out too well in the long term, what with the US being a burgeoning police state and all.
But if "we" write a new and more sternly worded piece of paper that says "rulers can't mistreat their subjects", that should work, right?
Besides, it's been "tried" already, in this form: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separation_of_powers - and by now it's clear how much that helped, right?
In reality, "the separation of powers" was just a bullshit PR-distraction, meant to give us a false sense of security, to alleviate the nagging subconscious awareness that the idea that we live in a system that benefits us just makes no sense whatsoever.
Regardless of how parts of the government are ostensibly "separated" or "firewalled", they're still all part of the same overall organization: the government.
There's no way to arrange an all-encompassing "authority of coercion" in a way that benefits the people being coerced. Another way to look at it is that forcefully taking people's money does not benefit whoever's money is taken. It benefits the takers.
The exploiters need the masses of the exploited to be blind to the exploitation, because otherwise it would come to an end, and that's why we find the idea of "the separation of powers" floating around, along with "the social contract" and "consent of the governed" and so on.
Similarly, homophobia has morphed into "pedophobia". We can't hate gays anymore but we're plenty virulent at hating pedophiles. Just the same emotions transferred to another group.
Inside, most of us are still basically the same bigoted people, but we've restructured our bigotry to fit the popular modern values.
2) Throw out corrupt leadership and anyone who evades auditing.
But the main thing I wanted to share was that he told me that bad cops sometimes plant evidence (usually drugs) in order to incriminate innocent people, and that I should be on my guard during these encounters and aware of everything that happens. And guess what? I didn't believe him! I honestly and naively could not believe that an officer of the law would do something like that. I had bought into the "protect and serve" nonsense.
Later, when I got a little older and more experienced, I figured out on my own that he was right and I told him that I had been wrong all along. Not because I got drugs planted in my car during a stop, but because I had seen it happen over and over again to other people, usually black or hispanic men.
When cops are found to be engaging in criminal activity and racism like this, they ought to be run out of law enforcement and never allowed to get another cop or security job. They should also be punished to the fullest extent of the law.
I can't understand this "surely this doesn't happen" mentality of a lot of Americans in general in such cases. I mean, I can understand wanting to see hard proof for a particular case (and to name names), but to think that these things do not happen or are not widespread seems delusional to me, like believing we live in Sesame Street kind of society.
Maybe because in other parts of the world the general culture doesn't include "trusting authority" as some default -- which used to be the case in the US too, for blacks, 60s students etc, but somehow got lost for the middle class. For a place with the biggest incarceration rate in the world, that seems bizarre.
This goes beyond police abuse too. While they would still condemn it, nobody would bat an eye in disbelief for something like "watergate" for example in other parts of the world. Of course those things happen -- in a place like Italy or France for example, they've seen the same things going on tons of times. But even when remember people like Hoover, they tend to think it was some isolated incident, due to a bad person, etc (the "few bad apples" theory as opposed to systemic issues).
"It can't happen here." It's very disruptive to some people's worldview to suggest that there's still any sort of racial inequality problem.
But these people were not innocent. This is the evidence. And justice will be served.
As long as discoveries like this are made and we have freedom of the press, justice will continue to be served.
edit: I do not make a claim to the sufficiency of the system, but am happy to see democratic ideals in action; there appears to have been a misunderstanding
Besides, what would you have them do? You speak of the failures we encounter in society, but not a way to solve them.
I am just happy to see democratic ideals in action. I do not make a claim to the sufficiency of the system in place, but to the ideals that the system stands for. I advocate for replacing the system. (and not the ideals.)
I think we need a (i) strong and (ii) independent audit system. We have the technology to make it strong, just borrow it from other federal agencies who specialize in intelligence. And with enforcement relying more and more on data gathering and extraction, audits would help ensure these are not misused, and help validate how well due process is followed.
The independent part would have to mean it is run by an agency that it not part of enforcement and in a way that is hard to influence. Who exactly it would report to, I'm not sure. Maybe a peer agency of the FBI & CIA?
That audit system would data-mine all enforcement activities and keep the data locked up in a vault. That data could then be requested via subpoena (for investigations like these) or FOIA requests (after a "reasonable" time to prevent interference with actual investigations).
Because America was, and is, racist.
And even as it is necessary, I wish HN didn't downvote you for it.
Military and Intelligence affairs.
Racism. Victims are most available in the disenfranchised of our society and black people have always been disenfranchised in our society.
Stop being racist. Stop disenfranchising entire segments of the population. Start investigating those in positions of power and stop the cover-ups.
Put another way: there are at least 2 layers of biases that occured before Mr. Moskos even touched the data.
> 2) his data is fed by news reports which may not evenly cover actual incidents
OK, although I doubt white deaths are reported LESS than black deaths (nothing to support it)
> 3) 25% of the data lacks racial info at all
OK, but this won't affect conclusion that much. Even if all those incidents involve black subject, it won't affect the conclusion.
> 4) the likelihood of biased policing being a factor in higher reported African American crime rates completely undercuts the conclusion he reaches
Of the 12,664 murders 4,077 were cases where offender's race was unknown leaving 8,587. Males were responsible for about 90%. 90% of 8,587= 7,728 US murders we know to be committed by males. White males committed 45.2% of 7,728 murders which = 3,143 murders. Black males committed 52.4% of 7,728 murders which = 4,049 murders. Black males make up 7% of this nation's population with about 19m individuals. White males make up about 28% of this nation's population with about 112m individuals.
Odds of a white man being a murderer: 1 in 35,634.
Odds of a black man being a murderer: 1 in 4,693.
African American male is 9 times more likely to commit homicide. It's very unlikely that biased policing is the cause of 9x homicide conviction rate.
For example it concludes:
> “Yes, more whites than blacks die as a result of an encounter with police, but whites also represent a much bigger chunk of the total population,” PolitiFact said in its Aug. 21 post.
> But PolitiFact did not take into account the percentage of those by race involved in violent crime or shootings of police, as Mr. Moskos did.
The data of who is involved in violent crime or shootings of police are themselves in question, because they are self-reported by the very officers and departments who are under consideration. Saying that police can't be biased, because their self-reported data does not show bias, is begging the question.
Until very recently, with only a few exceptions, the only data on police activity was provided by police themselves. The ubiquity of camera phones is now providing a growing body of independently gathered--and contradictory--evidence. I think this represents a fundamental shift that is taking place in policing today.
Wasn't there an article on HN about the government trying to rebrand Islamic State as Da'esh just a couple weeks ago?
Society doesn't act, individuals act. The error lies entirely with the corrupt police who did this.
2) Nothing since no one cares etc. You can vote to express your opinion but have fun losing every time to the majority who make their voting decisions based mostly on TV ads.
3) A lot of things, but again nothing can really be done since most people don't hold those in power accountable
I don't think stuff like this is going to change any time soon. Society is too busy looking at their phone.
1. Investigate reported crime (race/gender/economic parameters are ignored) OR catch criminal red handed.
2. Create a police report and submit evidence.
3. Testify if required, go to step 1.
Anyway I know at least one company working towards this goal as we speak, but I bet they aren't anywhere near that yet: http://gimltd.fi/ (Generic Intelligent Machines)
The only valid reason to draw a firearm is defense of life. If there are security robots around, one doesn't need to defend oneself or one's companions. (It's true that life may be threatened by tools of violence other than firearms, but robots might be trained to look for those as well.) Besides, by "incapacitate" I don't mean double-tap, rather something reversible like an enveloping foam etc.
This is unnecessary scope creep. Firearms have one legitimate use, killing. They are not props to use to bolster one's argument, even though the current state of jurisprudence allows police to use them as such. Keep it in your pants until it's time. Cops brandishing firearms are barely less of a danger to the public than anyone else doing so.
The bot can't always already be at the scene...
It's true that many locations, at least at first, will not have these robots installed. However, those places that have them, will have enough of them to control extreme numbers of armed humans. Capital costs might be higher than human security, but robots don't need doughnut breaks. So "arriving at the scene and figuring it out" is also scope creep, and incidentally not something humans are good at either. The robots will always be on the scene already, so they'll always be ready to take action.
I am probably looking at this problem through smaller-and-safer-country specs, Here police shootings are really rare, but so are other kinds of shootings. I thought of bots with high mobility due to the recent advancements in that sector, which would in my opinion make much more sense here than installing dozens or hundreds of stationary devices in every public space.
It might not make economic sense yet, but the trend only goes one direction. Electronic devices get cheaper and more capable over time. Robocop might not ever make sense, because that is a very complicated use case. However, a constellation of devices charged with enforcing a single rule, "no human hands may hold a firearm in this set of rooms", is already nearly within reach of current technology.
These are the hard problems we should be solving, not $social_network_flavor_of_the_week.
Financial compensation and putting those that caused the injustice in prison equaling the total of all of the terms served by all of those affected. That is as close to justice as could be had.
As for preventing corruption- there's no way to do this as long as there are people that can be corrupted. You can add oversight. You could replace the entire force with minorities. But if there are people that are corruptible, these efforts will fail. The best that you can do is to (1) promote ethics education in schools and flag students that reject it/scoff at it as they may need much more help and (2) don't divorce government and schools from religion which is an additional force for peer-pressure and community support against corruption.
If you work to exclude religion as a whole because some religions or those practicing them have certain beliefs you may find reprehensible, you also exclude other moral and ethical beliefs, peer pressure, and community support that would combat corruption.
To which I would reply yes, religion in any form can be (and is) used to support and encourage corruption.
All (communal, as opposed to internal) religions look good on the surface, promising wealth (prosperity gospel Christianity), eternal life (various abrahamic religions), removal of body thetans (scientology), etc.
They all share the attribute of not being provable, and all will fight (often quite literally) for their own survival based on no evidence at all.
And they all require the existence of THE OTHER, a threat, sometimes existential, sometimes racial but in some way unacceptably different.
Actions against THE OTHER are seen as noble, even when they otherwise seem to go against the letter and spirit of the communal creed.
Religion cannot be used as a tool of inclusion because for someone to be considered "good", there has to also be an identifiable "evil". Strangely, nobody ever claims this latter title for themselves.
Finally, I'm sure we (you and I) will never know for sure, but I'm willing to bet the majority of the authorities involved here were all part of their community churches.
I feel strongly that it is foolish to remove the freedom to practice religion if it promotes moral and ethical behavior. Freedom to believe and have faith in something that helps society shouldn't be dissolved.
That said, I'm all for having additional secular classes in ethics and morality for those that don't want to practice a religion. Freedom goes both ways as long as it doesn't promote values that hurt others.
We need to work together to solve corruption and other problems. Religion is not the enemy of morality, and neither is secular education of morality.
Much of our morality and ethics are innate and stem from our nature and evolution as a social species. Religion just took credit for it.
Even social groups of monkeys and rodents tend to avoid killing eachother and do what is in the best interests of the group.
Where is your evidence for this? It would seem more evident to me that the source I am aware of through my education in history and life experience for teaching of morals and ethics has been religion.
Although many here may not be old enough to realize it, countries that are mostly secular not long ago historically speaking had much moral and ethical teaching from their religions.
Attributing this to monkeys and innate behavior may account for part, but from what I understand, you could just as easily bring up monkeys in a ruthless environment where it is every monkey for him/herself. Having an established organization or organizations that teach morals and ethics is important.
Are there any important religious teachings that wouldn't be taught in a secular ethics class?
Not saying that people can't practice freely, but that it has no place in state education and government. No need for it in ethics classes either.
FWIW, I come from a country where religion doesn't play a big part in life and can think of two friends out of 50-100 that would be considered at all religious. Religion might seem more relevant to people in other countries obviously.