Digital media technologies can serve a critical role when examining the complexity of racial profiling. Cell phone cameras, video recordings and social media outlets provide users with the capability to expose racial inequality through second-by-second live action footage. In addition to creating revolutionary movements such as #blacklivesmatter, digital platforms can provide evidence to combat unlawful policing and racial inequality. Following the death of Michael Brown in August 2014, 34-year-old Mbye Njie began working towards a solution to expose racial profiling and minimize redundant stops, searches, and arrests. Njie is creating a multi-faceted app called the Legal Equalizer that is aimed at promoting positive police encounters through a more legally informed citizenry.
Njie wants to use the multi-face functions and capabilities of the Legal Equalizer app to challenge the entire justice system.
Here is how it works:
Once you get pulled over, you open the app, and it will start to record your interaction with the officer. Once the app is opened, it will locate your geographical location to identify exactly where you are. There is an option included within the app that allows you to send an emergency message to three contacts of your choice with the click of a single button. The app also provides information about your 4th amendment rights that protect against unlawful stops and searches. After the interaction with the officer, you can close the app and your three emergency contacts of choice will receive a recording of the entire encounter for to achieve a clear account of the incident.
“There is not a single app right now that does what we’re doing,” Njie told Huffington Post. “We want the power to be put back in the hands of the people so they know the laws at all times and just know they have that peace of mind to know your loved one or friend knows where am I when I get pulled over.”
Njie plans to release a functioning product by late September for iPhone and Android. The developers haven’t decided how much to charge for the app but the cost will not exceed $1.99. His GoFundMe campaign is asking for $25,000 to develop the app and so far he has raised a little over $3,000 with a family friend promising to match his earnings. To support Njie and his mission for justice against racial inequality, you can donate here. Peep the word above from Njie.