Those Police Unions

Closing Thought–20Aug20

First of all I take exception to the term ‘Union’ when applying it to the police.

At best it is an association……to imply it is a union means that it is part of the larger labor force…they are NOT!

That is my short bitch…..what this post is about is the coming storm of reform that is hitting the police forces around the country.

But why are these “associations” so strong?

Police unions are at the center of questions about what will happen to Chauvin and the three officers who watched as Floyd was suffocated. And they are also key to understanding why officers across the country escape discipline time and again after beating or killing people. As other labor unions have shrunk in recent years, membership in police unions has remained high. While the Black Lives Matter movement encouraged people to document police brutality on camera and demand accountability, police unions, which now have hundreds of thousands of members, have pushed back in almost every way imaginable—by overturning firings, opposing the use of body cameras, and lobbying to keep their members’ disciplinary histories sealed.

All of which can make officers feel invincible when they commit acts of violence. A forthcoming research paper from the University of Victoria in Canada found that after police officers formed unions—generally between the 1950s and the 1980s—there was a “substantial” increase in police killings of Black and Brown people in the United States. Within a decade of gaining collective bargaining rights, officers killed an additional 60 to 70 civilians of all races per year collectively, compared with previous years, an increase that researchers say may be linked to officers’ belief that their unions would protect them from prosecution. A working paper from the University of Chicago found that complaints of violent misconduct by Florida sheriffs’ offices jumped 40 percent after deputies there won collective bargaining rights in 2003.

The Infuriating History of Why Police Unions Have So Much Power

Reform is sadly needed but it will be a hard row to hoe…..because these so-called unions will fight any reform that is sadly needed.

In May, just days after a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, Lieutenant Bob Kroll, the bellicose leader of the city’s police union, described Floyd as a violent criminal, said that the protesters who had gathered to lament his death were terrorists, and complained that they weren’t being treated more roughly by police. Kroll, who has spoken unsentimentally about being involved in three shootings himself, said that he was fighting to get the accused officers reinstated. In the following days, the Kentucky police union rallied around officers who had fatally shot an E.M.T. worker named Breonna Taylor in her home. Atlanta police staged an organized sick-out after the officers who killed Rayshard Brooks were charged. Philadelphia police sold T-shirts celebrating a fellow-cop who was caught on video clubbing a student protester with a steel baton. The list goes on.

Along with everything else about American society that was thrown into appalling relief by Floyd’s killing, there has been the peculiar militancy of many police unions. Law enforcement kills more than a thousand Americans a year. Many are unarmed, and a disproportionate number are African-American. Very few of the officers involved face serious, if any, consequences, and much of that impunity is owed to the power of police unions.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/03/how-police-unions-fight-reform

Until those much needed reforms hit in your police department….there are a few things we all can do to try and keep the cops in-line with the rest of society…..

As a reporter covering law enforcement for the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey, and now in partnership with ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network, I use investigative reporting techniques to strengthen police accountability. Other journalists do the same. But, in truth, any citizen can apply the same methods to ensure the law enforcement system they’re funding is serving them well.

Police culture can be insular and tough to penetrate. But I’ve been surprised by how often it’s possible, though time consuming, to expose important issues by requesting and examining records and data from police departments and other government agencies and engaging citizens and key leaders. So here are five techniques concerned citizens, journalists and policymakers can use to examine police conduct in their communities.

https://www.propublica.org/article/i-cover-cops-as-an-investigative-reporter-here-are-five-ways-you-can-start-holding-your-department-accountable

Read the list and try to help keep the PD on a thin line…..it is time for them to return to their prized motto…”To protect and serve”….instead of the one they live by these days…”to punish and enslave”…..

Do yourself a favor….READ THE DAMN POST!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Is It Police Reform….Or Defund….Or Abolition?

The protests hitting our streets has called for a lot of things and even different things within the same protest.

Do they want police reform…..or is it the defunding of the police…..or in extreme cases….the abolition of the police…..but these things and ideas do overlap in spots……

Which one of these things is what we all want?

The conservs are even attacking the possibility of reform/defund/abolition with TV ads to scare the Be-Jesus out of the people.

A recent political ad, sponsored by the conservative State Government Leadership Foundation, imagines the hellscape of a post-police Minneapolis. A terrified white woman jolts awake at 2 am during a home invasion. She alerts her husband. She grabs her phone. She calls the police. But it’s too late. They have all been defunded. A dispatcher informs her that a “human resources” specialist can’t help her right now as the camera pans over her sleeping child, the burglar advancing ominously. “Radical liberals are fighting for a police-free future,” the narrator intones. “Don’t let them put your family in danger.”

There is one thing — and only one thing — the ad gets right: On all sides, in all directions, the debate over the future of policing remains a debate over safety, driven by communities who desperately, deeply want to feel safe.

In the aftermath of George Floyd’s killing at the hands of police, virtually every faction in American politics — from Trump Republicans to Biden Democrats, from Cato libertarians to intersectional Marxists — says they want to change policing.

On one end of the spectrum stand abolitionists, who want to “delegitimize the police.” These activists demand an entirely new public safety system based on social and economic equity, bolstered by a network of nonviolent emergency responders. They are offering more than a different vision for public safety — they are offering a different vision for the composition, and fundamental assumptions, of society. They have a different view of what causes crime. In the world they imagine, America would spend much more on education, health care, and infrastructure, and nothing on police departments as we currently know them.

https://www.vox.com/21312191/police-reform-defunding-abolition-black-lives-matter-protests

For those that would not take the time to read…..this is the ad I was referring to in my post…..

Personally, the police need to return to the role of “protect and serve” and leave military action to our soldiers.

There are some good ideas for a change in policing…..

https://www.vox.com/2020/6/24/21296881/unbundle-defund-the-police-george-floyd-rayshard-brooks-violence-european-policing

Just a thought about Portland……https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/what-we-know-dont-know-about-portland-dhs

Since the Trump lackeys think they have the right to police cities then why not abolish the police departments?

Acting Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Chad Wolf argued Monday that he does not need authorization or an “invitation” from local officials before deploying federal law enforcement assets to detain suspects.

In an interview with Fox News, Wolf defended his authority to conduct law enforcement operations on the streets of Portland, Ore., where local officials have requested that DHS withdraw after videos of protesters being snatched off the street by officers in unmarked cars sparked outrage.

“I don’t need invitations by the state, state mayors or state governors to do our job. We’re going to do that, whether they like us there or not,” Wolf said.

https://thehill.com/policy/national-security/department-of-homeland-security/508176-acting-dhs-secretary-i-dont-need

The idiots around Trump are making the case for abolition…..do these morons think before they speak?

MY guess is NO….for one needs some sort of mental process to speak…..and their heads are so far up Donald’s ass that the process is non-existent.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Let’s Form A Commission

Good grief we have been fighting for racial equality for how long?

And in the 21st century we have come back to the bad old days of the 1960s and the fight for equality and the end of racism…..and the civil rights movement thought they had accomplished that with the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act……but apparently nothing was truly settled in those days with those Acts.

I know let’s form a commission to get to the bottom of this problem.  Seriously?  A Commission?  Action to let politicians feel good about their cowardice.

That seems to be the reaction that all politicians have to the spiraling violence centered around the deaths of black citizens…..Trump has a plan, Dems have a plan and the GOP has a plan….https://lobotero.com/2020/06/19/gop-answer-to-police-violence/……..and all of them basically call for a commission or study group or whatever the politically correct term is these days….but in reality they are just giving a delaying game in the hopes cooler heads will prevail……in other words they are calling for what they always call for….INACTION!

There is nothing new about these calls for a “commission”…..it has been going on since the 1960s….and look where we are today…..fighting the same battles they fought in the 60s…..where’s the progress?

There’s a limit to the relevance of the so-called race riots of the nineteen-sixties to the protests of the moment. But the tragedy is: they’re not irrelevant. Nor is the history that came before. The language changes, from “insurrection” to “uprising” to the bureaucratic “civil disorder,” terms used to describe everything from organized resistance to mayhem. But, nearly always, they leave a bloody trail in the historical record, in the form of government reports. The Kerner Report followed centuries of official and generally hysterical government inquiries into black rebellion, from the unhinged “A Journal of the proceedings in the Detection of the Conspiracy formed by some White People, in conjunction with Negro and other Slaves, for burning the City of New-York in America, and murdering the Inhabitants,” in 1744, to the largely fabricated “Official Report of the Trials of Sundry Negroes, charged with an attempt to raise an insurrection in the state of South-Carolina,” in 1822. The white editor of the as-told-to (and highly dubious) “The Confessions of Nat Turner, the Leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Va. . . . also, An Authentic Account of the Whole Insurrection, with Lists of the Whites Who Were Murdered . . . ,” in 1831, wrote, “Public curiosity has been on the stretch to understand the origin and progress of this dreadful conspiracy, and the motives which influences its diabolical actors.” What happened? Why did it happen? What can be done to prevent it from happening again and again?

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/06/22/the-history-of-the-riot-report

Now is not the time to be faint at heart…..protesters MUST not settle for talk…..they have in the past and look where we are today.

Stay in the streets!

Do Not Settle!

“lego ergo scribo”

“De-Fund The Police”

Closing Thought–24Jun20

This one term has had a profound effect on the psyche of Americans….from reforms and change to they want to disband the police…..

In my opinion it is the worse possible term to use at this time in our evolving history.

Sorry to my die hard “law and order” readers but the police needs to change……they no long protect and serve but rather look like they are there to “punish and enslave”…..

But is there a way that a my responsive police department can be resurrected from the ruins of their history?

The vague and easily misinterpreted call to Defund the Police has been spreading quickly across the USA. Some may have a knee-jerk reaction to “just say no” to this call, but polls show a vast majority of Americans are concerned about improving the lives of people of color across the country. Reforms such as teaching police to de-escalate conflicts and enforcement of body camera use have support of about 90% of Americans. So, what could solutions to the current situation look like, how could they be paid for, and should relative costs realistically be coming out of police budgets?

Here are some steps you can take to make a difference:

educate yourself about public budgets, and how they can be improved
find out where and when relevant decisions are made, go there and be vocal
influence the media by writing to the press, being active on social media
mobilize your family and friends to take action with you
ensure that alternative solutions are created, proposed, and heard

Why and How to Defund the Police

I wrote about this on my op-ed blog, Gulf South Free Press……https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2020/06/11/what-does-de-fund-mean/

For example……how much has been given to PDs in military stuff?

According to a CNN analysis of federal data, the Department of Defense (DoD) has sent at least $760 million worth of military equipment to local law enforcement agencies since August 2017. This includes $5.3 million of gear used to quell protests, such as riot shields, gas masks, tasers, and other materials local law enforcement requested for “crowd control.”

Across the country, more than 8,000 police departments have been suppled with such equipment, at no cost, through the 1033 program, which allows the DoD to donate surplus combat material to law enforcement agencies.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/24/pros-j24.html

That needs to cease NOW!

Society cannot wait any longer….police reform is needed now and any postponement will only matter matters worse the next time.

Citizens want reform and change now….and they have taken to the streets….

The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research surveyed 1,301 adults between June 11 and 15 and found majorities “overwhelmingly” in favor of a number of proposed reforms to the U.S. policing system. 

Nearly nine in 10 Americans are calling for requirements that police officers use body cameras and 86% say clear standards must be established and enforced regarding the use of force by police. Just five years ago, Americans were far less likely to say police violence was a serious problem facing the country.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/06/23/why-we-march-poll-shows-overwhelming-us-support-police-reform-increased

Not to be outdone the Dems have offered up a cosmetic bill of reforms…..

The Democrats have offered up their own slate of cosmetic changes largely mirroring Trump’s, including banning chokeholds and creating a national database of abusive officers, while also explicitly rejecting the demand, popular among protestors, to “defund” the police. Former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democrats’ presumptive presidential nominee, has called for $300 million in additional federal funding to shore up police departments across the country, while Senator Bernie Sanders has said that cops need to be paid higher salaries.

Such measures will amount to less than nothing. They might as well propose to change the color of police uniforms. Inevitably, “reforms” from these representatives of the ruling class will end up strengthening the police.

If you would like more information on this subject then there are a couple of articles that could assist you…..

https://www.vox.com/2020/6/14/21290877/democrats-defund-police-omar-clyburn

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2020/6/12/21283813/george-floyd-blm-abolish-the-police-8cantwait-minneapolis

https://www.vox.com/culture/2020/6/8/21281069/abolish-the-police-black-lives-matter-george-floyd-protests-minneapolis-new-york

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

It All Began In Minneapolis

This round of protesting over the death of a black person at the hands of the police….these protests turned violence laced with destruction and arson…..and once again the talk is about reform of the police departments and their attitudes toward the minority communities….

All the focus on the PDs and politicians to step up and do the right thing…..and Minnesota took a step backwards…..

Legislators in Minnesota—the state where George Floyd was killed—huddled all night over police reform and walked away empty-handed, the New York Times reports. Democrats called for major changes to police oversight and Republicans more “common-sense reforms,” leading the two chambers to adjourn at around 6am Saturday without a deal. “I am deeply disappointed Senate Republicans chose to leave before finishing our work,” said Susan Kent, Senate minority leader for the Democrats, per the Star-Tribune. Paul Gazelka, the state Senate’s Republican leader, said “if they’re not interested in” his latest offer, “I don’t think personally that they’ll ever be interested in something that we can agree to.”

Democrats wanted Minnesota to beef up deadly-force laws, allow convicted felons to vote, and let the state’s attorney general (a Democrat) oversee the prosecution of police killings. Republicans called for milder measures, like prohibiting chokeholds in most police encounters and requiring police to stop officers from using excessive force. Democrats called those half-measures that haven’t helped elsewhere, then made a counter-offer at midnight that didn’t include voting felons and AG investigations. But the Democrat-led House and Republican Senate still couldn’t reconcile. “Minnesotans expect us, like they do in their jobs, to finish when the work is done,” said Gov. Tim Walz, who added that this “is at the center of what we should be doing.”

My question is…if reforms cannot get a foothold in the place this round began is there any hope for real reform….anywhere?

With all the chaos and protests and NYPD Commission finds they acted properly…

The New York Police Department (NYPD) commissioner on Monday defended the officers who drove into protesters against police brutality late last month, saying they did not violate the department’s use-of-force policy.

Commissioner Dermot Shea testified in an online public hearing on the police response to the George Floyd protests, saying the officers shown in videos to be lurching into a crowd were complying with department standards.

New York Attorney General Letitia James, who is investigating the police response, asked the commissioner about May 30 videos that showed two police cruisers driving into a crowd in Brooklyn. 

https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/503967-nypd-commissioner-officers-who-drove-into-protesters-did-not-violate-use

So it is perfectly alright to run down peaceful protesters with a vehicle in NYC, right?

Do you see the problem now?

Politicians are doing what they always do….Lots of talking loud and proud and saying nothing…..and inaction prevails.

Black Lives Matter, corporations

What started in Minneapolis should never be allowed to cease…..if government will not listen then take it to the streets…..and stay there until these “fat cats” grow ears.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

Charleston Five Years On

It has been 5 long years since the massacre in Charleston and the cowards in the Senate are still dragging their feet…..

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is under fire Wednesday—the five-year anniversary of the Charleston, South Carolina church massacre—for his refusal to act on legislation, sitting on his desk for over a year, that would close the loophole that allowed a white supremacist to obtain the gun used to shoot nine black congregants at the historical place of worship.

Due to a clerical error, the gunman’s background check to buy the weapon took longer than three days, which meant the seller was able to sell him the gun. Had a background check been completed, the gunman’s criminal record would have shown he was unable to purchase the weapon. Legislation to close the so-called “Charleston Loophole,” extending the wait time to 10 days, passed the Democrat-controlled House in February 2019.

But, as the Charleston Post and Courier noted Tuesday, the measure “has languished in the Republican-controlled Senate.” 

“It’s been 5 years since the shooting at Emanuel AME Church and well over a year since the House passed my bill to help close the #CharlestonLoophole that allowed the gunman to obtain his weapon,” tweeted House Majority Whip James Clyburn, a Democrat from South Carolina.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/06/17/5-years-after-racist-charleston-massacre-mcconnell-ripped-unconscionable-refusal

This is what always happens when bills enter the process….political cowards and lobbyists prevent good bills from seeing the light of day…..and McConnell’s Senate is the worse.

There are some common sense laws that could lessen the deaths….I said lessen not eliminate for that is a whole another post in itself…..

Nearly 40,000 people were killed by firearms in the United States in 2018, but curbing these numbers has been a statistically tricky—and politically fraught—problem. Now, a study that tracked individual gun laws over time suggests states can reduce gun deaths significantly by doing three things: limiting children’s access to guns, restricting concealed-carry permits, and restricting “stand your ground” policies.

The study isn’t without its flaws, but the basic findings make sense to Elinore Kaufman, a surgeon and public health policy analyst at the University of Pennsylvania. “Stand your ground laws encourage individuals to try to solve problems with bullets,” she says, as do right-to-carry laws. But laws that limit access to guns for children, she says, could help prevent firearm suicides by making it harder for everyone—not just children—to access guns in the first place.

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/06/three-types-laws-could-reduce-gun-deaths-more-10

Like I have said there are NO easy answers…..but something needs to be done for the violence and the deaths are getting way past acceptable.

I guess baby steps is better than no steps….

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

GOP Answer To Police Violence

I have given all the stated solutions for the problems the police are having these days….from Trump and from the Dems…..and now the GOP has finally released their plan…..

For comparisons this is my previous post…..https://lobotero.com/2020/06/17/trump-on-police-reform/

Now the GOP ideas…..

South Carolina Republican Sen. Tim Scott and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will unveil the Senate GOP’s police reform bill on Wednesday morning.

CNN has obtained a copy of the proposed legislation, read it here:
 
All plans are good ideas….the problem is can any of it be actually enacted?
 
A typical delaying tactic is the appointing of commissions/investigations….these are used to delay the implementation of reforms with the hope they will wither and die on the vine of political games…..GOP/Dems are both experts at using this game ending tactic.
 
But don’t believe me….others see it as well….

“Now is not the time to think small or respond with superficial, bureaucratic proposals,” Sanders said on the Senate floor, referring to the bill introduced Wednesday by Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.). “Now is not the time for more studies. Now is the time to hold racist and corrupt police officers and police departments accountable for their actions.”

The Republican bill—which was immediately criticized as insufficient by civil rights groups—includes a narrow set of proposals to incentivize police departments to offer de-escalation training, establish a “museum curriculum to educate law enforcement personnel about the history of racism,” and restrict the use of chokeholds by officers.

Most of these sound more like reform over change….and reform is NEVER permanent.
 
I do not see a lot of hope for de-militarizing the police and that is where problems exist.

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Trump On Police Reform

After thumping his chest like the crazed primate that he is over the protests and the “attacks” on the police….LAW AND ORDER…was his Tweets on multiple days……but now trying to gain the upper hand especially when an election is a mere few months away he, Trump, has signed a Executive Order on police reform…..

President Trump signed an executive order Tuesday designed to improve police training in the wake of the George Floyd killing. “Reducing crime and raising standards are not opposite goals,” said Trump. His order falls short of what activists have been demanding, reports the Washington Post, though more sweeping reform measures are working their way through the House and Senate. Some highlights of Trump’s order, via the AP and USA Today:

  • Database: It would set up a national database to more easily track abusive officers and ideally prevent them from being hired elsewhere.
  • Training: It would encourage police departments to emphasize de-escalation training for conflicts, using federal grant money as leverage.
  • More help: It would set up a “co-respondent” program encouraging police departments to work more closely with social workers on calls involving issues such as mental health, drug addiction, and homelessness.
  • Chokeholds: Trump said chokeholds would be banned “except if an officer’s life is at risk,” though senior administration officials clarified that the order prohibits chokeholds ””except in those situations where deadly force is allowed by law.” The holds already are widely banned in police departments, per the AP.

Some of these points are good points…..but if they are not adopted by all PDs then these are just farts in the wind….which is what most police reforms in the past have been.

Training if done properly then it will help….again only if all PDs choose to become part of the solution if not then little will change.

My favorite part of his 27 minute diatribe was his statement on law and order and the people….

President Donald Trump on Tuesday delivered a rambling and authoritarian speech in which he defended U.S. police, attacked racial justice demonstrators, and proclaimed that Americans “want law and order” whether they know it or not.

“They demand law and order,” Trump said of the U.S. public. “They may not say it, they may not be talking about it, but that’s what they want. Some of them don’t even know that’s what they want, but that’s what they want.”

Really….a person who has no idea what the people are all about knows what is best….if that is not a fascist point of view then maybe you need to look up the definition.  He knows what his ‘slaves’ want.

Looks like Donald the Orange got the jump on the GOP who promised a package on police reform soon…..

Republicans, who have long touted themselves the party of law and order, appeared initially resistant to pursuing policing reforms in the immediate wake of George Floyd’s death and the protests that followed. But amid the growing chorus for police accountability, GOP lawmakers on Capitol Hill are readying their own reforms.

Republicans in both the Senate and the House are starting to lay down some initial markers of reforms days after Democrats introduced broad legislation focused on police accountability. But it remains to be seen how much common ground will exist in the proposals and whether Democrats negotiate with the GOP on what many expect would be more incremental changes to policing.

https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2020-06-12/republicans-in-congress-consider-police-reform-bills

Just 8 days ago Congressional Dems offered up a bill on police reform….

Changing rules on “qualified immunity,” which can make it almost impossible to sue police for misconduct.

• Banning chokeholds and other practices that can lead to physical harm or death.

• Ending “no-knock” warrants in drug cases.

• Requiring police departments to report data on use of force and creating a national database to track police misconduct.

• Creating a national standard saying force should be used by officers only when “necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury.”

• Limit the transfer of military equipment to local police departments.

https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/06/congressional-democrats-unveil-police-reform-bill.html

I think the Dems bill would do more to cease some of the abuses of the police….but there are some parts of it that I do not think will help

All in all…I do not see any of the incidents going down….damn I hope I am wrong but I think these ‘reforms’ are just band-aids for gun shot wounds (no pun intended) of police violence and abuse.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–11Jun20

De-Fund the police!

That is the slogan making the rounds during these days of civil unrest…..but is that really gonna work?

There are many naysayers to this slogan and of course they will use crimes like murder, bank robbery, rape et al as a way to belittle the very idea of de-funding police departments.

There is NO example where this would work right?

Well that statement is not accurate.

Take Camden, New Jersey…..

City Council members in Minneapolis have vowed to “dismantle” the city’s police department, which would be an unusual—but not entirely unprecedented—move. CNN looks at the experience of Camden, NJ, which disbanded and replaced its police department in 2012 amid budget woes and corruption that was deemed unfixable. It hasn’t been an entirely smooth ride for the new Camden County Police Department, which has around 400 officers, including 100 hired from the old police department, but violent crime in the city has dropped by more than 40% over the last seven years, and officers, once widely feared, now host events like block parties, pop-up barbecues, and drive-in movie nights on the street once known as “Heroin Highway.”

County official Louis Cappelli says a lot of the improvement is down to “community-oriented policing.” When the new department was launched, officers were told to focus on walking beats and introducing themselves to residents. Cappelli says the department has made de-escalation a priority in training. Community leaders including pastor Ojii BaBa Madi say that while Camden still has many problems—and the force is still far less diverse than the community it serves—the city feels safer and a “productive dialogue” with police is now possible. “Us meeting with the community in the absence of crisis really changed the game,” Lt. Zsakheim James, who served on the old and new police forces, tells the Philadelphia Inquirer. “There are people who still don’t like the police, but there is a level of trust. There are people who believe in us, and believe in their ability to hold us accountable.”

This illustrates that reform and change can make a difference….so naysayers need to find a new way to crap on a good idea.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

De-Fund The PD!

The streets are alive!  It is time for solutions not symbolism!

After all the protests and the overreaction from the police plus the many many cases of racial abuse there is now a call to de-fund police departments.

First, I feel this is the wrong term to use for this leaves it open to interpretation and twisting of the meaning  as it is always done…..I figure there will be lots of mental midgets that will jump on the term and turn it into something it is not.  A great term for the “spin masters”.

The idea is starting to catch hold…..only the department is not going to be de-funded just parts of it and the funds go elsewhere….like to Community Services……

Some city PDs are starting to respond….

A veto-proof majority of nine Minneapolis City Council members vowed Sunday to “dismantle” the city’s police department, the New York Times reports. Standing on a hill before hundreds of people, they said the current department was beyond reform and will be replaced with a new public-safety system. “It shouldn’t have taken so much death to get us here,” said Kandace Montgomery, who heads Black Vision. “We’re safer without armed, unaccountable patrols supported by the state hunting black people.” The move comes a day after protesters cried “Shame! Shame!” when the city’s mayor, Jacob Frey, said he didn’t favor “the full abolition of the police.”

It also coincides with a grim Star-Tribune article on the city’s Third Precinct, which headquarters the officers who killed George Floyd. Calling it a “playground for renegade cops,” the paper looks at confirmed abuse incidents there—like officers kicking a handcuffed suspect until his jaw broke, pistol-whipping a low-level drug suspect, and letting prostitution suspects touch officers’ genitals before arresting them. The city also paid out $2.1 million between 2007 and 2017 to settle lawsuits against the precinct. “We are going to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department,” tweets Jeremiah Ellison, a representative in the city’s Ward 5. “And when we’re done, we’re not simply gonna glue it back together.”

New York City has decided to take things seriously as well…….

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sunday he would accede to protesters’ demands by moving to shift funds away from the NYPD toward social services.

During his daily briefing, the mayor addressed the demonstrations that have gripped the city and nation for almost two weeks following the death of George Floyd while in police custody. De Blasio announced a number of reforms as proposed by a task force on racial inclusion, one of which was to shift funding from the police force to youth initiatives.

“The details will be worked out in the budget process in the weeks ahead. But, I want people to understand that we are committed to shifting resources to ensure that the focus is on our young people,” de Blasio said.

https://www.foxnews.com/us/de-blasio-nyc-to-cut-nypd-funding-shift-it-to-social-services

Is this a real opportunity or just another in a long list of promised reforms that have fallen into the trash heap of political promises?  Is this just a way to try and calm the protests?

I think all that “reform” is a good idea….but there should be more emphasis on the personnel…..hire good stable people and put the trash out.

All over this nation the city governments have had ample time and ample notice that this was needed and yet they all looked away and allowed the abuses to continue…..what makes us think they are serious this time around?

Keep in mind that this situation we have today was seen some 50 years ago……
The scenes are similar to the 1960s. In response Pat Gillham, assistant professor in the Department of Sociology at Western Washington University, says President Lyndon Johnson commissioned the 1968 Kerner Report, offering recommendations to police for managing protests.

But seeing the response this week with military-style vehicles and tear gas, Gillham thinks the report has been ignored.

“These things don’t create positive relations between the police and the community they promise to serve and protect,” says Gillham. “Just exacerbates things, which is exactly what the Kerner Report found 50 years prior.”

https://www.publicnewsservice.org/2020-06-05/social-justice/50-year-old-report-warns-against-police-tactics-used-today/a70445-1

Dems step in to save the police departments with a bill that would “reform” the PDs……

Democrats proposed a sweeping overhaul of police oversight and procedures Monday, the most ambitious change to law enforcement sought by Congress in years, per the AP. Before unveiling the package, House and Senate Democrats held a moment of silence at the Capitol’s Emancipation Hall, reading the names of George Floyd and others killed during police interactions. They knelt for 8 minutes and 46 seconds—now a symbol of police brutality and violence—the length of time prosecutors say Floyd was pinned under a white police officer’s knee before he died. The Justice in Policing Act would:

  • Limit legal protections for police. For example, it would revise the federal criminal police misconduct statute to make it easier to prosecute officers who are involved in misconduct “knowingly or with reckless disregard.”
  • The package would also change “qualified immunity” protections for police “to enable individuals to recover damages when law enforcement officers violate their constitutional rights.”
  • Create a national database of excessive-force incidents.
  • Ban police chokeholds.
  • Ban racial profiling and boost requirements for police body cameras.
  • Grant subpoena power to the Justice Department to conduct “pattern and practice” investigations of potential misconduct and help states conduct independent investigations.
  • The measure stops short of calls by activists to “defund the police,” a push to dismantle or reduce financial resources to police departments that has struck new intensity in the weeks of protests since Floyd’s death.
  • It is unclear if law enforcement and the powerful police unions will back any of the proposed changes or if congressional Republicans will join the effort

Please stop calling them “police unions”….nothing about them is about the worker and their protection.  At best they are associations to protect cops when they do wrong.

The Dems still are naive enough to think that good policy will win the day….sadly it NEVER wins out…..if it does it is then quickly changed…..

Again I think this move is just a political ploy to give them cover with the voter.

All the leaders are jumping into this and onto the bandwagon…..most of them have had how many years to get something done and yet now is the time they pick….could it be that the election looms?

This is an idea of what society and community could be……

At first blush, the notion that modern police departments could be defunded and dismantled seems, to many, like a misguided impulse from out of nowhere. Without police departments, how will we deal with violent crime? Sure, many on the left would agree that the war on drugs that has put so many people behind bars — especially people of color — must be radically overhauled or completely ended. But what about murder? Are we not going to arrest murderers anymore?

This concern has been raised by lots of people online, including some of my liberal colleagues. Few on the left would disagree that modern, hypermilitarized police forces have shown little regard for anyone or anything that doesn’t directly relate to the police or the protection of the interests of corporations and other business owners. (Even then, police departments nationwide haven’t done a great job of preventing theft.) And few on the left would disagree that heavy police reform is necessary, possibly at a federal level, or that the right to peaceful assembly guaranteed by the Constitution’s First Amendment should be reinforced as well. But getting rid of the police? How would you do such a thing?

https://www.vox.com/culture/2020/6/8/21281069/abolish-the-police-black-lives-matter-george-floyd-protests-minneapolis-new-york

A regular to IST Political Change was posted on the ideas to reform the police…..https://politicalcharge.org/2020/06/08/what-policies-does-your-city-need-to-adopt-to-decrease-police-brutality/

Please….any thoughts?

“lego ergo scribo”