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Police Protection

According to Romans 13, authorities exist to be a terror to evil-doers. However, this is not a call for the state to proactively stop evil and doesn't suggest the capability of the state to do so. It is a statement that it will punish those that have done evil. it is self-evident that the more the state can stop things prior to happening, the less freedom and privacy a people will have. Beyond that point, stories are not unknown of the state intentionally stepping back and not interceding during violent events. Individuals ought not rely solely on the state for protection but should instead be prepared to protect themselves and others. In fact, court precedent states that the police cannot protect people and are not obligated to do so.

“Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.”  Romans 13

Court Cases

DeShaney v. Winnebago County Department of Social Services.

“Nothing in the language of the Due Process Clause itself requires the State to protect the life, liberty, and property of its citizens against invasion by private actors," stated Chief Justice Rehnquist for the majority, "even where such aid may be necessary to secure life, liberty, or property interests of which the government itself may not deprive the individual" without “due process of the law.” Source

Warren v. District of Columbia

In a 4–3 decision, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals affirmed the trial courts' dismissal of the complaints against the District of Columbia and individual members of the Metropolitan Police Department based on the public duty doctrine ruling that "the duty to provide public services is owed to the public at large, and, absent a special relationship between the police and an individual, no specific legal duty exists." Source

Article

“Neither the Constitution, nor state law, impose a general duty upon police officers or other governmental officials to protect individual persons from harm — even when they know the harm will occur,” said Darren L. Hutchinson, a professor and associate dean at the University of Florida School of Law. “Police can watch someone attack you, refuse to intervene and not violate the Constitution.”
 

The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that the government has only a duty to protect persons who are “in custody,” he pointed out. Source

News Stories

LA Riots

“Shocked and scared by the slow police response to last month’s riots, thousands of residents are buying guns and learning how to use them.”

“One of the riot’s starkest images was of blacks pummeling a white truck driver, Reginald Denny, after police had retreated from the area. The attack was captured on videotape, like the King beating.” Source


LA Riots

 

“Where are the police? Where are the police?" Lee whispered over and over from his rooftop perch. Lee would not see law enforcement for three days -- only fellow Korean-Americans, who would be photographed by news agencies looking like armed militia in what appeared to be a guerrilla race war on the streets.” Source

Chicago Mayor Lightfoot

On Tuesday, Mayor Lightfoot acknowledged that a crush of 911 calls has overwhelmed both the system and Chicago Police Department. But she also told her city’s residents that, if trouble comes their way, they should call 911 instead of using guns to defend themselves.

“Obviously we’re aware of the fact that Illinois is a concealed carry state,” Lightfoot said. “Do not take matters into your own hands. Call the police.” Source

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