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Analysis of Consent and Control in Daily Life
There are efforts by authorities to exercise considerable control over the populations under their supervision normally within the boarders of a country. In order for governments to exert the necessary authority, individuals must consent to their rules that are normally articulated in form of laws and rules. The laws are articulated in the enforcement of remedies to any individual who acts contrary to the rules that govern the nation. Most of these remedies require culprits to pay fines, penalties or be behind bars in prison.
In enforcing the applicable rules and regulations, the government normally enforces the provisions of the criminal justice system, which is staffed with experts in interpretation of the laid down laws and the prescriptions they provide in case of default. The decision arrived at by these experts who are mainly judges is considered final. These judges are trained on how to analyze the evidence availed by the investigators. The investigative work is done by the police who are the first to determine the seriousness and gravity of the committed offense. The police conduct their investigations in a secretive nature to avoid tampering by either party i.e. the offender or the offended. The police conduct themselves professionally and do not display any subjectivity in the course of their duties.
However, there are great disparities that police are faced with in the conduct of their duties which mainly revolve around prevention of crime, arrest of criminals and conducting investigative work on criminal offences. The police find great disparities between the formal learning environments in their training colleges and the actual informal world of crime (Hunt 369). The police are normally instructed to use their knowledge and skills to subdue and restrain their suspects in order to arrest them. They can only use reasonable force like firing their firearms when they notice that their life is in danger. The police who are new on their jobs learn to adapt to the informal world of crime through informal experiences and advice they get from their more experienced peers. Such police officers learn gradually that the ethics they learned in college may not be ideal in handling the pervasive environments which is the nature of their work. Due to their eagerness to develop rapport and credible reputation amongst their peers, they henceforth learn to exercise excessive force over their subjects. Such officers are made aware through exposure and experience from their colleagues what they should regard as normal or excessive force.
In essence, the government through its agencies such as the police and the courts exercise what can be referred to as biopower. It allows the authorities to exercise control over large populations who live in their jurisdictions since such individuals are considered to have consented to this power through ratification of laws and rules in constitutions and other enactments. Such consent and control is an integral feature of the modern state.
The government in exercise of its responsibility of enforcing the laws must demonstrate some gentleness and human face and the power they yield should be seen more as emanating from the people. This erases any dictatorial and high handedness that may have been reminiscent of earlier societies where wrongdoers were often condemned in most heinous manner. The view of power as emanating from the people creates cohesion in society and enforces discipline.
Discipline in society must also be seen in realm of each and every institution executing their core functions without interference from any quarters. Every institution must be individuated on the basis of their tasks, control, training and observation (Foucault 161). Discipline in institutions permits them to have a panoptic view over their subjects and responsibilities. They are able to develop surveillance mechanisms, which give them an overview over their performance. Any errors are corrected promptly through the use of established structures. Panoptic organizations including governments develop institutions and necessary frameworks that allow for order and control to persist amongst their subjects. This is normally done through the use of subtle and often invisible forces especially in this era of advanced technology. Most governments today are known to have installed surveillance cameras in strategic locations and are monitored daily in order to avert any subversive activities.
The continued use of control and surveillance mechanisms by authorities helps in eradicating the culture of excuses and justifications especially in some societal institutions such as the police. It increases accountability of everyone in his day-to-day activities. Accountability is also increased through the proper analysis of situational and abstract scenarios on the basis of information availed through surveillance. This is because most of scenarios, faced by law enforcement officers, are usually mutually inclusive. A thorough and objective analysis is required in order to develop an honest opinion, which should guide what kind of action should be taken.
The institutions in society such as prisons, schools, hospitals, factories and others play a vital role in creating a panoptic society. Each of these institutions operates under a set of rules which guide the subjects affiliated to them. Each system produces delinquents who in most societies work hand in hand with police and act as their proxies in noticing and reporting crime. They work as informers to police officers since they are aware of most acts of crime which are intolerable in society. This increases the level of surveillance in society.