UH Law Professor Ken Lawson joins A-1 Nick on the A-1 Podcast
Mr. Ken Lawson is the Co-Director of the Hawaii Innocence Project and a popular legal analyst for Hawaii News Now. At the University of Hawaii's William S. Richardson Law School he teaches courses on criminal procedure, criminal law, professional responsibility, and evidence. He was kind enough to participate in the A-1 podcast, where I asked questions pertaining to the Black Lives Matter movement, George Floyd murder, and police brutality.
I did not shy away from controversial questions, like, "Why do you think Colin Kaepernick's kneeling during the national anthem has been conflated with disrespect toward the flag, anthem, and/or military?
Mr. Lawson explains the dynamics of the "majority society" as a possible reason for the adverse reactions back in 2016. He reminds viewers that the first amendment protects Kaepernick's right to freedom of speech and peaceful protest.
I also asked, "How do you reconcile the divisions created by BLACK LIVES MATTER, BLUE LIVES MATTER, and ALL LIVES MATTER?
Mr. Lawson responded by detailing the underlying spirit of the BLACK LIVES MATTER movement. He illustrated how historically, when unarmed Black people are killed or injured during the arrest process, law enforcement officers in many visible cases are not charged, or if charged, found "not guilty." It's as if the "BLACK LIFE DOES NOT MATTER."
When I asked about the #defundthepolice hashtag, Mr. Lawson quickly pointed out the problem with the choice of words for the movement. As Mr. Lawson explains, many want to reappropriate city and state budgets so that the police DO NOT have to respond to every matter, especially when its not critical to public safety. Some problems may be best resolved by a mental health expert or social worker. As I've reviewed information on the internet, I do see that a vocal minority of people may want to simply abolish the police; however, that is not Mr. Lawson's position, and through our conversation, it was clear that the branding of #defundthepolice could imply many things.