Why I Thought of This: Fergusnowden

A project log for ReportSafe

Let's build a tool that gives good cops a way to report bad cops safely & anonymously.

John VilsackJohn Vilsack 03/11/2015 at 21:010 Comments

I was inspired by Hackaday's call to action for this year's contest to build something meaningful. There are usually a few projects rolling around in my head; but I wouldn't consider any of them world changing.

When it comes to weighing my political priorities, equal rights and privacy are the two issues most important to me. When I sat down to think about what needed to be fixed in these two areas, equal rights kept bringing me back to Ferguson, and the proper noun most associated with privacy in my mind these days is Edward Snowden.

The Ferguson report was pretty damning. Unless there was some sort of mass body snatcher conspiracy localized entirely within the Ferguson Police Department, I could not accept the premise that all Ferguson Police were bad. So why didn't anyone speak up?

So from that question, came this idea. Maybe if the police were more confident they could report issues they themselves are concerned with, maybe the system will help to work itself out. Maybe even the very existence of such a tool can act as a deterrent to stop the morally indecisive to not do the bad thing.

A tool like this could be expanded on even further. Maybe if we were all a little less afraid of being Ned Stark'd any time we stick our necks out, the real injustices of the world could be dealt with with more expediency and transparency.

I want to live in a world where decent and truthful people do not have to fear punishment for standing up for what's right.

Please let me know if you'd like to help.