Decoding the Phrase “Defund the Police”: What Does It Really Mean?

3 min readSep 16

I just read a comment on reddit claiming it’s a CNN plot started by people that aren’t very bright. They used different words, but that as the gist of it. The phrase “Defund the Police” has been the subject of intense debate, social activism, and media coverage. Opinions on its meaning and implications vary widely, and the term itself has been the victim of political polarization. Contrary to some opinions that dismiss it as a conspiracy or an unintelligent idea, the phrase encapsulates a more nuanced conversation about law enforcement, public safety, and social services.

What Does “Defund the Police” Mean?

At its core, “Defund the Police” generally refers to the reallocation of financial resources from police departments to other areas that could help address the root causes of crime and social inequality, such as education, mental health services, and community development. The idea is that by investing in these sectors, communities can reduce the need for heavy policing and create a more equitable society.

Represents how a budget allocation might change before and after “defunding the police” is implemented (hypothetical data.)

- The left bars represent the percentage of the total budget allocated to various sectors before any reallocation.
- The right bars show the hypothetical distribution after reallocating some funds from the police department to other sectors like education, mental health services, community development, and drug rehabilitation.

This graphic serves as a simple illustration and is not based on actual budget data. However, it captures the essence of what “Defund the Police” aims to achieve: a more balanced distribution of resources that addresses the root causes of social issues.

The Philosophy Behind the Movement

The “Defund the Police” movement argues that current policing models often contribute to social inequality and can sometimes escalate conflicts, especially in marginalized communities. Therefore, some advocates propose that funds typically allocated for law enforcement be redirected to social programs that aim to eliminate the underlying causes of crime. The philosophy rests on the assumption that reducing factors such as poverty, lack of education, and inadequate mental health support can result in a…


Mom of three boys. Computer programmer living in the country with my husband focusing on my hobbies and youngest son.