If You're Confused About What Defunding the Police Means, Allow John Oliver to Explain

All over the country, we’re seeing signs at protests demanding justice for police brutality and pressure on social media calling to defund the police. And while it might sound like a radical or confusing concept to some, on Sunday’s Last Week Tonight segment, John Oliver clearly explained what defunding the police really means and why it is the next step to moving forward.

“Defunding the police absolutely does not mean that we eliminate all cops and just succumb to the Purge,” Oliver said. “Instead, it’s about moving away from a narrow conception of public safety that relies on policing and punishment, and investing in a community’s actual safety. . . like stable housing, mental health services, and community organizations.”

Earlier in the segment, Oliver explained that after cutting spending on key services in many communities, the police are the only group of power left to handle almost any issue people have. He referenced the former Dallas police chief, who admitted in a briefing back in 2016 that “we’re asking cops to do too much in the country” and “every societal failure [is] put on the cops to solve.”

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