Radiolab
Radiolab
Jun 17, 2022
No Special Duty
Play • 46 min

Since the massacre that took the lives of 19 schoolchildren in Uvalde, Texas, people across the world began to ask versions of one question: why did police wait outside the door instead of protecting the kids?

It's not the first time this question has come up. Two years ago, as she watched police respond to the protests that followed the death of George Floyd, Producer B.A. Parker wondered: what are police for? With the help of our Producer Sarah Qari, she found that the United States’ Supreme Court had given this a most consequential and bewildering answer.

We decided to re-air this episode to shed light on how a case from 2005 upended our assumptions about the role police are meant to play in our lives.

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