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Hope for Other Cities to Follow After Minneapolis School Board Votes Unanimously to End Police Contract

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/06/03/hope-other-cities-follow-after-minneapolis-school-board-votes-unanimously-end-police

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Speaking of the Minneapolis PD, did anyone see this over at The Intercept? The head of the po-po officers union there is a straight up thug and proud of it:

~https://theintercept.com/2020/06/02/minneapolis-police-union-bob-kroll-shootings/

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I think Amy Goodman or Sonhali had something on about him a couple of days ago. He just comes off as the typical racist thug cop. Takes a lot of steroids and watches a whole lot of Fox News.
He reminds me of the head of the police union here in Pittsburgh. A reactionary piece of shit

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If the divestment plan expands these bigots will either have to reform or move on. They could, should, must be weeded out.
We have to fix poverty neighborhoods and bad cops that cruise there.

Yup. If brutal policing cured poverty we’d all be rich by now.

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This guy is a complete nut job.

But I worry the left overall is making tactical mistakes trying to wash away concern that a lot of people have about violence. I watched the debate between Saagar and Krystal, and when I’m agreeing more with Saagar, I think we have a problem - as he says, “The answer to looting is not looting itself.” Most people are going to experience this through their TV screens and what they are going to see is not what they’ve seen in normal protests. They are going to see the violence. And if it takes the military to quell that violence, well it seems pretty obvious who that will benefit electorally. Luckily (for those that want to get rid of Trump), the president is making a ton of stupid mistakes along the way so the normal reaction of rallying behind the leader in times of crisis may not happen to the degree it normally does.

I am not happy with any spokespeople that aren’t attempting to tamp down violence and there are a lot of them.

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I reserve judgement on looting.
It’s not my right to dictate how the enslaved choose to fight the slavemasters.

And prior to mass protests – including riots – I didn’t see The Man paying much attention.

The history of lawsuit payouts by major police forces based on wrongful brutality/murder/excessiveforce is beyond lengthy. This shit is continuous, egregious, and widespread – to the tune of hundreds of millions of $ in “sorry we killed you” compensation. Here’s one of countless many:

~https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Malice_Green

The vids I watched from all over the country, there’re all straight up thugs, The more I watched, the more pissed I got. They all need a serious ass whipping. The worst were the ones who took a knee with the protestors, then less than an hour latter were beating the shit out of the same protestors they were kneeling with, disgusting.
Never trust a pig.

I don’t think I’ve changed my mind exactly, but I have come to a different understanding of where I think it makes sense to put an emphasis for those who are still trying to reform the police however difficult a move it is. After listening to the Fresh Air with Wes Moore (Jun 3), I’m convinced (and I should note that others here - including you probably - have said something similar) that a bigger lever to use than any possible lawsuit to change behavior is a fear of reprisal by those who see (or in this case participated) behavior like this and don’t take an active role to stop it (Moore gives a few non-threatening phrases one could say to Chauvin to completely remove him from the scene had these other cops wanted to do the right thing). So basically training needs to start right now on the very basics of what is expected of all cops to do in this same or similar scenarios and if they don’t do it, the quite stiff consequence (legal and financial and other) should be well publicized. Because basically the Chauvin’s are already gone. A deterrence of getting charged with murder 3 or now 2 with a now perhaps likely conviction probably doesn’t even enter in his mind. But probably a good 90-95% of cops may not be perfectly ethical, but they have their head on straight enough to do the thing that won’t get them into huge trouble. They just need to be crystal clear on what that thing is and what is in store if they don’t do it.

Since I’m lecturing protesters, I’ll add the following suggested demand to whatever list they have already (and I hope some of them are making them):

We demand that all police officers be trained in how to deescalate when one or more other officers are deliberately or carelessly putting civilian lives in danger by breaking a clear set of rules all officers must follow. And if a civilian is murdered by an officer, felony murder charges must await those officers who don’t try to prevent it.

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In some cities, Minneapolis now among them, police departments are losing security contracts with public school and parks departments. That’s one handy tool in the arsenal of “defund the police” measures.

Of course, whatever replacement security comes to be hired as rent-a-cops will be the next issue. One would suspect that moonlighting officers (like Chauvin) will take those jobs.

As for de-escalation, the infamous thin blue line has worked both behind the scenes and overtly to undermine initiatives to replace “us versus them” policing with community policing.

On the topic of us versus them, I had the chilling experience of visiting a bar that packed with Detroit police after late night shift changes – a friend of mine tended bar there. A more sullen and hostile crowd could not be found, the place oozed with tension. Now a Detroit beat is undoubtedly stressful, but these guys – this was a bar for white cops – were wound tight. I guess my point is, the first area to de-escalate is a cop’s mindset.

That said, I have one friend who started in policing at an early age, rose through the ranks to become a high-ranking detective in a largish Michigan city, and retired young – all without being anything but mild-mannered, and a good husband and father to boot. I have another “friend” – a Detroit cop – well, let’s just say that he was never particularly honest.

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