Violent Police Body Camera Footage

Experts Warn of Overexposure to Violent Police Body Camera Footage

Many people feel compelled to watch police body camera footage after terrible events when the videos are made public, despite the fact that most people are anxious, fearful, and stressed when they hear terror and see violence. People are advised to turn off those types of videos by psychiatry and pediatrics experts from Northwestern University.

“Seeing violence is stressful for us and witnessing harm to another human is a painful experience,” said The Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University’s Sheehan Fisher, an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. “In addition to that, it depends on what the type of violence is and the reason behind it,” he told Newsweek on Saturday.

Police body camera footage has recently been widely shared on news websites and channels, and it frequently goes viral on social media. Fisher believes Americans have been “overexposed to violence within the news.”

Recently, the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) released body camera footage showing officers quickly apprehending the alleged shooter at the Old National Bank. In addition to the shooter, five people died in the 146th mass shooting in American history.

“We want to have more transparency in terms of what’s happening in our world, but I think it’s also trying to find that balance of what is necessary to really expose ourselves to because these images are very dramatic and can cause trauma and high stress levels depending on what someone maybe has already experienced in their life,” Brewer told Newsweek on Sunday.

There has been a connection between angry and aggressive behaviors in younger people and virtual violence. Brewer advised parents to exercise extra caution in regard to the television and online content their children are exposed to.

“These videos are scary, and sometimes kids aren’t able to understand what they’re watching,” Brewer said. “When young people watch violent videos or other similar content, it affects their mental health and may make them angrier or more aggressive because their brains are still developing.”

While experts point out the dangers of watching real-life violence, they also assert that there are some advantages to the public’s exposure to this kind of content. The injustice minorities experience in America—particularly at the hands of law enforcement—is brought to light by this. According to Fisher, a psychologist at Northwestern Medicine, it also gives viewers a front-row view of how law enforcement and onlookers respond to situations that are frequently graphic. “It humanizes it, but once again, overexposure can also create the opposite effect,” he said. “Normalizing it risks making you less sensitive to it.”

Those who do engage in virtual violence, according to Brewer, need a constructive outlet for their emotions. She recommended activities like journaling, meditation, talking to close friends or a therapist, and going for a walk outside. For children in particular, she said, a coping mechanism is crucial.

“It can be quite traumatizing and can cause our stress levels to stay consistently high, which can be quite damaging to our brains over time, especially for young minds, if we don’t have those outlets to deal with some of those stressors or know how to do that.”

Read More: How Long Do Security Cameras Keep Footage?

Source: newsweek

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