Opinion

Charleston seeks to prevent another Ferguson

An editorial from the Charleston Daily Mail 

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Cities across the nation have watched events this fall in Ferguson, Mo., and asked, “How can we prevent that from happening here?”

That question prompted Pastor Wayne Crozier of Abundant Life Ministries to invite Charleston Chief of Police Brent Webster to an open forum on police and community. Webster accepted, and the event was hosted by the church in Charleston’s East End last Wednesday.

The result was a valuable conversation that transcended the “us versus them” narrative present in much of the recent national debate over police tactics.

“I wanted to humanize,” Crozier said. “Allow some of the police department to see that we love our children, we love our families, but also wanted the community and the church to see that police are people too. Behind that badge, behind that uniform, that’s a man.”

Both sides of the dialogue emphasized the importance of a proactive approach that builds trust and anticipates problems…

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