'Dominate with compassion': Trump pushes police reform in Dallas meeting to which black top cops were not invited
The president said his administration was taking four steps on police reform, an idea which has gained traction in the wake of Floyd's death
President Donald Trump on Thursday, June 11, seemed to be quite mellowed while talking about the street protests that are continuing in the US over the brutal death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police in May. He said his administration would ‘dominate the streets with compassion’ as he was in the process to release his plan for police reform in the wake of the protests that have spread like wildfire throughout the US in just a few weeks.
The president, who visited the Gateway Church in Dallas during the day for an economic roundtable, made his first remarks on police reform since the death of the black American and called his response to the protests as “dominating” but with “compassion”. The poll-bound Republican leader was criticized recently for his hardline stance against the protests which even included using the military to tame the demonstrators. The idea, however, faced a big backlash with even the defense establishment expressing disagreement with the president.
“We are doing it with compassion if you think about it. We are dominating the street with compassion,” Trump, who will turn 74 on Sunday, June 14, said. However, Trump’s Dallas visit was also marked by controversy as the city’s top law-enforcement officers were not invited. Three officers who were not invited-- Dallas Police chief Renee Hall, Dallas County Sheriff Marian Brown and Dallas District Attorney John Creuzot -- are all African-Americans. The roundtable, which was on the state’s reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic that has hit over two million people in the US and killed more than 113,000, featured a number of African-American leaders from various fields like religion, law enforcement and small businesses.
Trump, who has been vocal against calls for defunding and disbanding police departments in the US, said he was taking a four-point step on police reform and one which would “finalize an executive order that will encourage police departments nationwide to meet the most current professional standards for the use of force and that means force but force with compassion”.
The other steps include boosting economic development in the minority communities, taking on healthcare disparities by race and opening more school choice. A number of cities in the US have already decided to slash funds meant for police departments and use them for social services, particularly in the minority communities.
Trump, who was speaking at the campaign-style event, also said his administration would address police training more.
'No progress by falsely labeling millions of decent Americans as racist'
“In recent days, there has been vigorous discussion about how to ensure fairness, equality and justice for all of our people,” Trump said, adding: “Unfortunately, there's some trying to stoke division and to push an extreme agenda - which we won't go for - that will produce only more poverty, more crime, more suffering. This includes radical efforts to defund, dismantle and disband the police.”
"We have to work together to confront bigotry and prejudice wherever they appear. But we'll make no progress and heal no wounds by falsely labeling tens of millions of decent Americans as racist."
While Trump was cheered by the crowd as he talked, a large group of protesters assembled near the church with banners reading ‘Dump dumb Trump’, ‘F*** Trump’ and ‘F*** your orange Cheeto looking a**’. A group of his supporters also came with signs that read ‘Women for Trump’ and ‘Trump 2020’. Inside, however, the audience that cheered Trump when he called the coronavirus as “the plague from China”, did not care to maintain social distancing guidelines. Most of the people even did not wear masks.