TMW Book Reviews

A Badge, a Gun, but No God:
The Problems With Policing in America

by Hilton Napoleon

Author Hilton Napoleon recounts his experiences as a law enforcer in his book, “A Badge, A Gun, But No God.” With more than thirty-three years of experience, he offers an honest dissection of the American police system, all while dealing with his fair share of discrimination as a black man.

Much like the eye-catching title, the author draws you in with his intellect, honesty, and integrity. Throughout the pages, he recalls countless African-American citizens who faced untimely deaths at the hands of corrupt police officers.

While it’s easy to dismiss such officers as racist and ignorant, the author proves that such a problem goes deeper than individual shortcomings. First, he brings in the element of America’s complicated history with its minority citizens while proposing that change in the system must start from within its organizational structure.

All of which he delivers directly and honestly in a faith-based narrative that should unite all Americans.

Yet, despite the hardships and challenges, the author emphasizes the values that all officers must showcase. These values include duty, responsibility, empathy, peacefulness, and justice—all of which should be as clear as their badges.

Unfortunately, not every officer is a symbol of such values. Nevertheless, the author offers practical tips on how to keep your head cool while dealing with brutal cops. Additionally, while he examines the widespread problems within the system, he proposes potential solutions that could better the structure in the future.

With all these in mind, it’s safe to say that the author delivers a handy guide that is not only meant to inform but also to inspire. His written words will undoubtedly play an essential part in how we move to a better future. However, like change, we must all start within ourselves and play an active role in the community. If you’d like to know how to improve the system, read this book as a great starting point. You won’t be disappointed.

– The Moving Words Review

Official Entry: The Most Moving Book Award, Jan. 2, 2023

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