Although it might be hard for some of her constituents to believe, a sitting U.S. congresswoman is calling for a police department to be disbanded.
According to Breitbart, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) is in favor of the drastic measure for the Minneapolis Police Department in order to “reimagine public safety” in the city.
“Proven themselves beyond reform”
Her comments come in response to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week after ex-officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes.
Omar made her comments in a tweet on Friday, asserting that the city’s police force “has proven themselves beyond reform” and needs to be rebuilt from the ground up.
“It’s time to disband them and reimagine public safety in Minneapolis,” she wrote.
“We’re not simply gonna glue it back together”
The congresswoman went on to credit Minneapolis City Councilman Steve Fletcher for his “leadership” on the issue. He expressed his support for disbanding the agency in a recent Time editorial.
Councilman Jeremiah Ellison, the son of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, is another leading voice for the cause.
“We are going to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department,” he tweeted on Thursday. “And when we’re done, we’re not simply gonna glue it back together. We are going to dramatically rethink how we approach public safety and emergency response. It’s really past due.”
“A transformative new model of public safety”
His sentiment received the support of City Council President Lisa Bender.
“Yes,” she wrote in response to Ellison’s tweet. “We are going to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department and replace it with a transformative new model of public safety.”
While the city council scheduled a meeting on Friday to vote on the first potential police reform measures, any such proposals would need the approval of a judge before going into effect.
As anyone who watched the video of George Floyd pleading for oxygen would agree, excessive force and abuse of power are issues that this and many other police departments need to address. Dismantling an entire agency, however, could have far-reaching effects that put the law-abiding people of Minneapolis at risk.