The Equality in Policing Act
Avoids the Printz Problem
Congress’s prior efforts to legislate relative to state police powers have been hampered by Printz v. United States, which is controlling law. In Printz, The United States Supreme Court held that while Congress may require the federal government to regulate commerce directly, the Necessary and Proper Clause (Article I, Section 8) of the U.S. Constitution does not empower Congress to compel state or local Chief Law Enforcement Officers (CLEOs) to fulfill federal tasks, even when those tasks are temporary. The Equality in Policing Act does what no other proposal aimed at nationalizing policing has done to date. It Avoids the Printz problem and paves the way for federal control over local and state policing. Perhaps you ask, why is federal control important? It allows DOJ to develop policing standards that must be followed by every law enforcement agency (LEA) in the United States. We are excited The Equality in Policing Act falls strictly within confines the U.S. Supreme Court listed in the Printz decision:
- Congress could not require [state or local] Chief Law Enforcement Officers (CLEOs) to perform federal duties under the Necessary and Proper Clause. The Equality in Policing Act will be enforced from afar by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).
- “Congress could not circumvent that prohibition by conscripting the state’s officers directly.” The Equality in Policing Act does not conscript state officers. DOJ personnel will carry out all functions related to The Equality in Policing Act in the same way DOJ carries out all matters pertaining to pattern or practice investigations.
- The federal government may neither issue directives requiring the states to address particular problems, nor command the states’ officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. The Equality in Policing Act does not command the state officers, or those of their political subdivisions to administer or enforce any aspects of The Equality in Policing Act. Administration and enforcement are the sole responsibility of DOJ.
- It matters not whether policymaking is involved, and no case-by-case weighing of the burdens or benefits is necessary; such commands are fundamentally incompatible with our constitutional system of dual sovereignty. The core considerations related to The Equality in Policing Act do not involve a weighing of burdens or benefits but are instead aimed at enabling the United States to exert powers conferred upon it by the Constitution, including ensuring citizens’ constitutional rights are protected. Finally, McCulloch v. United States establishes that when the United States exerts any of the powers conferred upon it by the Constitution, no valid objection can be based upon the fact that such exercise may be attended by the same incident which attended the exercise by a state of its police power.”
Specifcally, McCullough states:
“That the United States lacks the police power, and that this was reserved to the States by the Tenth Amendment, is true. But it is nonetheless true that when the United States exerts any of the powers conferred upon it by the Constitution [Enforcement of various constitutional provision via laws (First Amendment, Fourth Amendment, Fourteenth Amendment, Equal Protection Provision, etc.)], no valid objection can be based upon the fact that such exercise may be attended by the same incident which attend the exercise by a state of its police power.”
Uphill Battle Convincing Constitutional Professors
We Found A Way to Federalize Policing
Every profession has its widely held conclusions and constitutional professors believe there is no way to federalize local and state policing. But we found a way. Interestingly, we are having the most difficult time getting constitutional professors to review The Equality in Policing Act because they cannot fathom we have done what they said could not be done. Ask constitutional professors you know to review The Equality in Policing Act and share feedback with us.
Sign Our Petition
ONUS’s effort to transform policing began with a small group of resolute mothers who set out to transform policing following the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. The mothers never wavered in their determination to find a way to standardize policing across the U.S. From their efforts, The Equality in Policing Act was born.
ONUS, Inc. is a 501(c)4 organization. Contributions are not tax deductible.
What Style of Policing Do You Favor?
“While departmental policing styles do influence individual performance and behavior, police officers have their own unique policing styles. These individual styles are based on predispositions that provide police officers with an array of responses to various situations. They reflect the officers’ attitudes, personal beliefs, morals and values, professional aspirations, and views of police work.
William Muir (1977) believed that officers developed distinctive styles and that their selection of an operational style was premised on whether officers possessed two specific attitudes. The first attitude, which Muir termed passion, pertained to whether officers recognized the need to use coercion and were willing to employ it to attain job-related goals and objectives. The second attitude, perspective, involved the willingness of officers to empathize with the circumstances of citizens with whom officers interacted. Muir developed a typology based on these attitudes. The typology consists of four policing styles: professionals (officers possessing both passion and perspective), enforcers (officers possessing passion but not perspective), reciprocators (officers possessing perspective but lacking passion), and avoiders (officers who had neither passion nor perspective).” Read More
We Will Never Forget
Colin Kapernick. You Shouldn't Either!
Football Player Colin Kaepernick put all his dreams on the line to focus national attention on unconstitutional policing. By so doing, he forfeited a passion he cultivated throughout his lifetime. While many stood with Colin for a time, the Football league soon lured them back. Once again, America gleefully watches, participates in, and supports the Super Bowl while Kaepernick—a good quarterback by all accounts—remains sidelined. We lament that Americans did not continue to standup for Kaepernick the way he stood up for us.
The George Floyd Act Won't Do!
We read every page of The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. It falls short when it comes to policing reform. Others share our sentiments:
- Washington Post Opinion: It will take more than the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to fix our broken system.
- LX News: What the George Floyd Act Can and. . . .
- Letter of Opposition from proponents of The Breathe Act (Justice in Policing Act (JPA), renamed The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act