The controversies regarding House Bill 2 and police camera video access (House Bill 972) have been lumped together as examples of wrongheaded actions by the N.C. legislature. I contend one is and the other isn’t.
HB2 was passed in haste based on unfounded fears and political miscalculation.
The video access bill was studied for months with the input of various stakeholders. The goal was to provide the police and the public with the benefits of having the cameras.
The controversy involves the question of access. Opponents feel the law allows “the fox to guard the hen house” and believe unfettered access for the public is the only way to ensure that video can be accessed when needed. But there are privacy, if not legal, issues associated with that position.
The drafters of the law believe there must be some controls in place; they aren’t trying to block access but are trying to implement procedures that allow reasonable access.
HB2 should be repealed. HB 972 should be discussed among people on both sides. Believe it or not, both sides want the same thing: access to those videos to help ascertain what happened in relevant situations.