The Paramount Network has cancelled the long-running television show Cops, one of the first shows to expose an American audience to law enforcement in the field after 32 seasons. The network took the show off its schedule following demonstrations triggered by George Floyd’s police killing.
Now, the network has confirmed that the reality show is completely dropped, showing police chasing down and apprehending accused, kicking in front doors and arresting people, almost always pursuing suspects in high-speed chases. According to a podcast called Fleeing From Police, officers will often trick offenders into signing releases to film.
Cops, who debuted in 1989, had one of the longest runs in the history of American television. Also, inspired a variety of similar programmes. Over the years, the show faced criticism from those who said the program glamorized police aggressive behaviour. Also, took advantage of the misfortune of suspects. In 2013, Color of Change, a civil rights group, began a campaign urging Fox not to renew the show and calling on advertisers to withdraw support. The community applauded the decision to cancel the show in a series of tweets Tuesday evening.
Other police shows have come under fire recently, too. Last week’s episodes of Live PD were pulled by the A&E network – which also tracks officers in real-time, though the series is not yet cancelled outright. Javier Ambler, a black man, dies in Austin in March 2019 as the Live PD cameras rolled away. After a poker game, the 40-year-old postal worker and father of two had his bright on as he drove home.
Cops telecast mostly on Fox network for 25 years to 2013, when Viacom-owned Spike TV chooses it. After Spike rebrand as Paramount Network in 2018, the show stays on the air.