On Friday, activists with the country's growing racial justice movement unveiled a new campaign to end police violence, bridging protester demands with data and policy to create structural solutions to the crisis that has gripped national attention for more than a year.
Score for “Officers Of The Peace”:
“More than one thousand people are killed by police every year in America,” the group states on its website. “Nearly sixty percent of victims did not have a gun or were involved in activities that should not require police intervention such as harmless ‘quality of life’ behaviors or mental health crises.”
What is the official “Terrorists’ kill score,” in comparison?
Homeland Security is aiming in the wrong direction!
“In the year that has passed since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot to death by an officer in Ferguson, Missouri, police have killed at least 1,083 Americans—an average of nearly three people per day, according to figures compiled by VICE News. Even that figure, released August 9, quickly became outdated.”
Land of the free…
Beacon of light to other nations…
TRAVESTY… due to the macho rites of homage to Mars rules… war, force, weapons and armed guards everywhere. This ilk (and what it represents) is anathema to peace AND prosperous conditions for all.
Definition of Mars rules right here: “Campaign Zero launches just as new reports highlight the lack of training and culture of aggression that permeates law enforcement agencies throughout the country.”
Culture OF aggression: right on!
Suspending officers without pay during the investigation is the only effective tool the I read at their website.
There should be an independent investigation, but to have it occur from a state office is asking for cover-up. Investigations need to be controlled by the immediate neighborhood in which the police violence occurred.
People need to be informed of their rights to prosecute police for violence and to have the right to file charges against police. The family, friends, neighbors, and non-profits need to be empowered to file charges in the name of the victim whether the victim dies or survives police violence or whether the victim want to prosecute.
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“Homeland Security is aiming in the wrong direction!”
So true- much more pain/misery from our own, than outside entities. And we get THOSE acts of terrorism reports far too often.
Another young man was killed in St. Louis and the facts in the incident don’t add up, at all. Accountability has flown the coop, yet zero happens at the Federal level or DOJ. Here we go again. Shot in front or back, armed or not, this constant cover up business is going to take everything sideways. Disarming the police, using community centers of enforcement and new officers with proper training, please. Bernie Sanders has some great plans for changing things when he wins the Presidency. Please visit his website and volunteer to work on this issue and ending economic injustice in this country. The source of injustice begins with not being able to get/afford a good attorney, often times. Jill Stein is not an attorney, btw, Bernie is. Bernie isn’t really an attorney but he plays one in The Senate. It’s Friday and time for more " politickin’ ", eh?
Here is a proposal for “Campaign Zero Lives Matter” that would surely eliminate the problem:
Pass a Federal Law, that for every Police shooting or Police Tazering, the officers involved would be REQUIRED to fill out the paperwork on the incident without help from the clerical staff.
The new victim mantra would become:
“Don’t taze me bro … Or you will have to do the paperwork”
The law could go even further to say that “No Donuts” until all of the paperwork is complete. But our Supreme Court would undoubtedly hold that additional provision to be cruel and unusual.
Anyone familiar with the rudiments of US history will not be surprised by the fact that police forces kill armed and unarmed citizens in large numbers, often with no legal justification whatsoever. In the good old days when “the Negro” and “the Mexican” knew their place, and when the ACLU and other troublesome outfits were nowhere in sight, police officers abused and killed the citizenry with near impunity. In fact, in the Jim Crow system (wrongly thought of as purely a Southern phenomenon) law enforcement was often complicit in lynching and murder. It was understood that there was one penal system for the whites, and another for the n***ers. Policing was no different. Police forces were ready to “protect and serve” white communities from “negro crime.” But they showed no commitment to protecting blacks from white terrorism and oppression. Of course, police generally protect the middle classes rather than the poor and the rich rather than the middle class. In other words, the police exist to protect property. This was true when police forces were originated and it’s still true today. The central contradiction of policing in a so-called “capitalist democracy” like the USA, is that the police must enforce class-biased law in a society pretending to social equality. Many people are bemused that the US jails such a high proportion of its populace, and that most of the inmates are poor people of color. But this is no accident. The law is applied exactly as you might expect in a society dominated by Money and Property. If you rob a bank with a gun, you will end up in a prison. But if you rob the banking system with a pen and a computer you might well end up as US Treasury Secretary. You certainly won’t go jail. You are more likely to end up owning shares in a company that runs private prisons.
I remember not so long ago that Amnesty International published a report on police brutality in the USA. The report pointed out that torture was used in some Chicago precincts to secure confessions. The LA Ramparts scandal showed that some police units were de facto criminal death squads, trafficking in drugs and murdering people who got in their way. The killings in Ferguson, NYC, Cleveland and elsewhere have to be seen in the context of this larger culture of corruption and impunity.
The USA has slowly but surely been moving towards a police state. In a police state, officers don’t enforce laws; they terrorize and oppress the populace. Too many police officers–especially in minority communities–have a police state mentality. Their authoritarian bent is glaringly evident in their refusal to brook no dissent from non-compliant citizens. In the case of Sandra Bland, for example, the Officer escalated the situation into a confrontation because she refused to put out a cigarette. Is his request to put out a cigarette a lawful demand? What law was she breaking when she refused? The little Hitler with the badge and the gun had no right to threaten Ms Bland with a taser for failing to obey him on this matter. A man who needs to feel absolute power at all times has no business wearing a police uniform. It’s obviously an issue that so many police officers are ex-military fresh from “counterinsurgency” in the imperial hinterlands. The mentality of a military occupier is not what you want in a police officer, who has to deal with the public in a multitude of contexts. If you’ve seen the video of the abusive officer in McKinney, Texas, you will know what I mean. The Officer behaved like a true imbecile, a bird brained Rambo, as he forced a 13 year old African American girl to the ground, as though she were a dangerous killer. Her crime? She may have crashed a teenage pool party. The bully in blue was acting all paramilitary, as the girl cried for her mother. He then drew his service weapon on other kids who were in the vicinity. The conduct of this fool sums up what is wrong with so much US policing.
First, he perceives all blacks as the Other. As far as he is concerned, blacks are Iraqis or “Arabs.” It makes no difference to him whether the black in question is 13 or 36–“they are all dangerous.” This is the racist claptrap you hear from occupying armies, from Afghanistan to Palestine. The officer has no concept of “protect and serve,” for the simple reason that he does not care a wit for the humanity of black people. It was notable that he did not try to talk to the black teens in a paternal or adult fashion. He just came down on them, as though they were a pack of wild animals (and in his mind, they probably are). The officer’s paranoia, and his rage at being disobeyed, easily lead him to violence. And his abusive behavior makes plain that he has full confidence in the power of badge and uniform, that whatever he does will be sanctioned by the force and by the State. Again, the similarity to the military mindset is obvious.
Campaign Zero is a powerful call to bring the police under civilized control. The movement should be supported by all citizens and by decent police officers, unless they want to live in a police state. It absolutely amazes me that so many so-called “white” Americans are willing to take the side of the police in their deadly encounters with black Americans. These “good Americans” (in the good German sense), these law-abiding folk, are lending themselves to state tyranny. Because when the police can kill with impunity, there is no law; there is only raw, naked power.
Police are just following the oligarchy’s orders to keep minorities from revolution… or voting.
► While we’re carrying on about social justice, Darren Wilson has become a leper for defending his life and doing his job.
Back when mug shots were available online in my state, I used to see people brought in to the local jail with charges such as traffic violations and other misdemeanors beaten and bloodied. It made me seriously wonder what happened along the way? Did the person resist arrest because they were being taken in on trumped-up charges? Were the charges fair? I would see a list of charges so long I reckon they were hoping to throw the book at them, thinking at least one would stick.
And most of all, how and why did it resort to violence, anyway?
“In the year that has passed since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot to
death by an officer in Ferguson, Missouri, police have killed at least
1,083 Americans—an average of nearly three people per day”
Don’t worry; that’s only 1/12th the yearly murder rate in the USA. Now about them thar terrorists threatening the very fabric of USAian society…
His life was threatened by someone running away?
And they really think that Hillary or O’Malley or even Sanders will carry all this out once elected? They forget that there are plenty of lobbyists in Washington which will tell the elected president and politicians what to do and what not to do. Oh, they might get a band aide solution like cameras but the system will not be changed at this point.
It worth pointing out that with all of those thousands of lynchings committed by mobs and vigilantes in the USA ,generally against peoples of color, not one is recorded to have happened in Canada.
Now a lynching is not necessarily an act committed by a Police force but the same factors have to come into play here when it comes to the Police killing Civilians. In another post a person defending the police forces in the USA revealed himself when he claimed in essence that more civilians are killed in the USA by police than places like the UK because the UK does not have “blacks with an attitude that will not follow orders.”
In other words blacks better not have “attitudes” when someone gives them an “order”.
Two factors are at play here. Racism and Authoritarianism and both come out of the patriarchy aided along by the tendency to embrace fundamentalism as a religion which is more prevalent in the USA then in Canada or the UK or Germany…Couple this with a culture of impunity which the Police forces tend to have and it a recipe for disaster.
Now the mindset of the current police forces in the USA can be best illustrated by the words of a Police Chief commenting on why millions spent to move from light blue uniforms to black. He stated black was more “intimidating” and that the people should feel intimidated when seeing a police officer as they would be more deferential.
Nothing will happen without also addressing the problem of police unions, and their ability to overturn sanctions of cops through union “arbitration” . As Johnny James pointed out, Union mandated “police bill of rights” demand that police have several days or weeks before they can be questioned. They have a right to view any incrimination film or evidence before giving a sworn statement (getting their stories straight) . If fired they must get a reinstatement hearing. If police are forced to rehire they get back pay. Something like 75 percent of cops that are fired with cause are rehired after union pressure and review.
Canada has its own issues with the First Nations and racism against certain peoples, but compared to God’s Own Country, the USA, Canada is a paradise of harmony and justice. The presence of slavery on United States’ soil was a great evil: we shall be living with the consequences of that historical tragedy for quite some time. The long shadow cast by slavery still darkens the American scene, not least because too many so-called “White people” think that they are white, and that being white makes them members of the superior race. These deluded, pathetic people are sustained in their delusion by the social fact of black impoverishment and marginalization. In other words, to all intents and purposes blacks look like they are socially inferior, which can only mean that whites must be racially superior. Alas, this nonsense, this great and evil lie, has frustrated the radical possibilities of US political culture, which ought, by right, to be one of the most dynamic and creative political cultures in the world today. The US has remarkable cultural politics, but it has a dismal political culture, rife with sclerosis and imbecility. And this because 100 million Americans can’t let go the psychological comforts of their “race.”
I share your amazement that some people think the issue of police brutality is a matter of “Negroes With Attitude.” This way of looking at things is deeply white supremacist: it suggests that blacks are responsible for their own victimization when they do not pay proper respect to the (white) authorities. One is reminded here of the slave patrol and the Jim Crow system where every negro had to know his place.
Racism, authoritarianism, patriarchy, fundamentalism–these and some other ingredients are the toxic brew in which American policing marinates…
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I concur on the issues of Canada’s own racism when it comes to our First nations peoples but this helps to illustrate how it becomes ingrained into a culture. Many Canadians do not see themselves as racist or would insist racism not an issue , yet when discussing or reacting to our First Nations peoples see them as persons “less than or inferior to themself”. The drunken lazy Indian stereotype abounds.
I really think this is changing in our younger generation. With so many migrants from the world over with many of them coming from countries where they were oppressed as minorities fewer of their children seem willing to embrace the same views towards the First Nations peoples that some of the longer established peoples might have embraced.
But how to start fixing this problem? Public exposure and debate are excellent first steps. One possible next step is to create local Citizen Review Committees to take the investigation away from the police and their friends in the district attorney’s office. In an open, public forum, let the local citizens call witnesses, review evidence and decide if a matter will refer to a Grand Jury.