Archive for the ‘police brutality’ Category
Was Obama weak on police shootings of black men?
- Rehearsal of certain aspects of the event by either First Responser, LEO, or both.
- If the false flag event consists of an assassination(s), the narrative includes acting alone, the “discovery” of a diary or a mainfesto which states the murderous intentions of the “patsy”, and the labeling of the so-called perpetrator as being insane so the act can be referred to as a random act of insane violence so the subject of a conspiracy never enters the discussion by the media and the authorities investigating the crime.
- Disguise the purpose of the event.
- Oklahoma City
- The Estonia Catastrophe
- The Oslo Shooting
- London Subway Bombing
- Virginia Tech Shooting
- Taft Union High School Drill gone live
- Boston Marathon Bombing
- In the case of the Dallas shooting, we see the same type of drill preparation only a few days prior to the murdering of five Dallas police officers
- Lone gunman with no second shooter in order to avoid allegations of a conspiracy.
- A discovered diary or manifesto declaring the intentions of the lone gunman. In each of the following cases, the perpetrator (i.e. patsy) had a diary/manifesto stating their murderous intentions and the target of the hostility.
- JFK assassination
- RFK assassination
- Martin Luther King
- In 9/1l, the discovery of Mohamed Atta’s passport was miraculously found, despite the fact that neither of the two planes had their black boxes found. But the government found Atta’s passport. Swamp land in Florida anyone? The found passport served the purpose of a diary with stated terrorist intentions, for placing the blame on Muslim terrorists, to cover up the fact that this was a false flag event.
- In regard to the most recent terror event, the shooter has been identified and he has, you guessed, a manifesto with stated intentions to go along with a discovered document on military strategy tactics. In regard to the most recent terror event, the shooter has been identified and he has, you guessed, a manifesto with stated intentions to go along with a discovered document on military strategy tactics. Micah Xavier Johnson went on a shooting rampage against Dallas police, officials said Friday.
- The creation of domestic false flag terror events (e.g. the Dallas police shootings designed to start a race war), in which the government, for the good of the people, must step in and declare martial law.
- The elimination of all political and religious dissent under the martial law. This means gun confiscations and roundups (e.g. rehearsed by Jade Helm.
- When goals one and two occur, World War III will commence and the New World Order will complete its mission of the elimination of all national sovereignty.
Who saw this coming?
Dallas Police Used Robot With Bomb to Kill Ambush Suspect: Mayor
by ERIK ORTIZ http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/dallas-police-ambush/dallas-police-used-robot-bomb-kill-ambush-suspect-mayor-n605896
“He added that while robots aren’t typically designed to be armed — they’re used for observation or dismantling purposes — law enforcement could decide to use bomb robots when officers are in immediate danger.” http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/dallas-police-ambush/dallas-police-used-robot-bomb-kill-ambush-suspect-mayor-n605896
Everything we know about the bomb robot used by Dallas policeThe incident is believed to be a first on US soil. By James Vincent July 8, 2016 http://www.theverge.com/2016/7/8/12129348/dallas-shooting-bomb-robot
They have been trying to separate us,
divide and conquer. They tried to do it by selecting Obama and get all the white folks that are secretly racist, riled up. But that didn’t work, and a lot of white folks fell in love with that man.
|Gun supporter Ms Giffords on a shooting range
Then we had the Tea Party, and that went over like a led balloon when they shot that political lady, Gabby Gifford, a gun supporter.
And all these “false flags hoaxed drills” that are unraveling at the seems. So they throw in Donald Trump to get the masses really acting whacko. But even Trump got unexpected followers, in the Latinos and Blacks.. So now what, what can they do to declare Martial law, what can they pull off next to give them good reason to bring the military to the streets of North America in full bloom??
Either the American people are more resilient than they expected or too sleep to care. One thing I do know, is that if Martial law does become open, and warfare is declared, they will be facing some serious gun battles from folks who ain’t as scared as the Police are, from folks who have bought out the gun stores in the Malls and online, even the gays purchases of firearms peaked after Orlando, well, all I can say is, get your supplies and honker down cause if the SHTF… it ain’t gonna be pretty. And it will certainly be colorful as all walks of life join together. The USA and its government has shown that it doesn’t really care about ANY OF ITS people. It ain’t about black or white, or latino it’s about those who have and those who do not. So yeah, this will be a colorful revolution coming to a war theater near you.
After the recent deaths of two black men (Alton B. Sterlingand Philando Castile) here in the US struck down by police, and the not so recent legislation called, “Blue Alert” to protect the Police, it makes you wonder if along with being psychopaths, if the folks at the helm are bi-polar. I have always admired folk’s ability to list dates and times and names in news stories and talks etc., well that part of history always escapes me, but believe me, I remember the stories, the carnage, the blaming and the looking away. And one thing that is for sure, the US will say it’s a brutal regime that uses snipers to kill its own people who are peacefully protesting, but they will never turn the mirror around and own, claim or admit that those snipers, along with a host of other so-called “lone gunman” are funded and supported by our own home grown brutal regime, right here in the USA. Nope, not, it’s different, they are “lone gunman” they are not connected in anyway to the USA or it’s government and administration, oh no, the US would never do anything like that against its people, never in a million years, only those other guys do that.
After the Dallas Police Shooting, Former Congressman Joe Walsh Threatened Obama on Twitter https://mic.com/articles/148139/dallas-police-shooting-joe-walsh-racist-tweet#.NDJzYCbGj
What White America Fails to See Michael Eric Dyson JULY 7, 2016http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/10/opinion/sunday/what-white-america-fails-to-see.html?_r=0
After Poised Live-Streaming, Tears and Fury Find Diamond Reynolds
By JULIE BOSMANJULY 7, 2016
Because it’s certainly not freedom.
At any given time, a police officer could walk up to you and find you in violation of some arbitrary law. It is a mathematical certainty.
However, it seemed that talking about PTSD in the clinical sense was didactic, linear and devoid of inference beyond the obvious. That is, a person caught in a war zone, a person who experienced a car accident, physical/emotional abuse or the death of a loved one. We knew that it would affect them in so many ways and we often called in “Adjustment Disorder”. Then we moved on to figure out strategies for healing and getting these “individuals” to a healthier mindset and that feeling of “safety” again.
I always wanted to research it, or see what others have done in that line of research. I am so grateful to Dr. DeGruy Leary who has done the grunt work on this topic. I am sure it can be developed even beyond the book she wrote, and perhaps others will look into it. She also has a lot of courage to even broach this subject. In my ignorance it seemed to only make sense that the impact of our past would affect our future, but the cognitive dissonance will not allow many on both sides of the aisle to see it, accept it or do anything about it. So I must commend her bravery to even take the time, resources and brain work to put this thought together so eloquently.
“It took the emergence of a grassroots movement against police terror, to wake a critical mass of Black folks to the reality of their condition.”
“If Hillary Clinton can make the general election into a crusade against “bigotry” and “intolerance” as embodied by Donald Trump, she can win with an otherwise issue-less campaign, thus shielding the 1% from harm. Black folks will be happy, imagining the election is all about them. “The great task of independent Black politics is to pry Black folks loose from the Democratic Party’s lethal embrace.” For that, we need a movement in the streets.”
Female Black Panther Party, Sexism in the Group?
NB COMMENTARY: I really wanted to NOT be in this Beyoncé Madness, but the irony of it all is to see folks being offended by her antics to the point of calling it racist when in fact, if they took the time to read the lyrics, they would see the song is all about Beyoncé getting hers. With a smattering of some retorts against “whatever.” The fact that she even uses this “so-called” Black Panther imagery, which in and of itself is a smack in the face of the movement, a downgrade at best in its presentation and surely not militant at all; is amazing to me. The fact that folks are getting hot under the collar over it is outright laughable. Then, on the other hand, you have these drones who support and even consider this “show” as something meaningful or even intrinsically an acknowledgment of her “Blackness.” Now I am ROFLMAO and sadly, there are many in that camp as well.
“I want you to know how much they perfectly loved you,” she clarifies in reference to those who dedicated their energies to Black communities. “I want you to know that they were willing to die for you” (264).
“The problems of Black women and the problems of White women are so completely diverse they cannot possibly be solved in the same type of organization nor met by the same type of activity… [but] I can understand how a White woman cannot relate to a White man.”
“[The Black man] feels that he is something less than a man… Often his wife (who is able to secure a job as a man, cleaning for White people) is the breadwinner. He is therefore, viewed as quiet worthless by his wife and children” (Huey Newton, To Die for the People. Pg. 81)”
[Malauna Karenga, founder of “Us,” creator of the pan-African/African American Holiday of Kwanzaa, intellectual and writer.]
“What makes a woman appealing is femininity and she can’t be feminine without being submissive. A man has to be a leader and he has to be a man who bases his leadership on knowledge, wisdom, and understanding… The role of the woman is to inspire her man, educate their children and participate in social development. We say male supremacy is based on three things: tradition, acceptance, and reason. Equality is false; it’s the devil’s concept.”
“I mean, it’s one thing to get up and talk about ideologically you believe this. But you’re asking people to change attitudes and lifestyles overnight, which is not just possible. So I would say tht there was a lot of struggle and there was a lot of male chauvinism… But I would say all in all, in terms of equality… that women had very, very strong leadership roles and were respected as such. It didn’t mean it came automatically.” (Interview with Tracye Matthews, 26 June 1991; Kingston, Jamaica.)
Male figures in the Black Panther Party, such as Bobby Seale, Huey Newton, and David Hilliard, were key to the initiation process of this project; however, Black women figured greatly in the execution of the first Breakfast Programs. Neighborhood mothers, who lived close to St. Augustine’s Church and actively participated in local parent-teacher associations, focused their energies on the program, even though they were often unaffiliated with the BPP, and made it a success. Female members of the Black Panther Party also contributed to the Free Breakfast Program by feeding as well as educating the children present. Although tensions often arose between the more conservative community mothers — who preferred that the children quietly and orderly ate — and the Black Panther women — who brought their restless, activist spirits into the spaces — these women cooperated to transform their neighborhoods.
“[W]omen ran the BPP pretty much. I don’t now how it got to be a male’s party or thought of as being a male’s party. Because those things, when you really look at it in terms of society, those things are looked on as being woman things, you know, feeding children, taking care of the sick and uh, so. Yeah, we did that. We actually ran the BPP’s programs.” (Frankye Malika Adams in an interview with Tracye Matthews, 29 September 1994; Harlem, New York)
Beyoncé, Media Hype, 2016 Super Bowl Madness
|Beyonce and her Girl Gang|
NB Commentary: I enter this discussion kicking and screaming and swearing to myself that I am not, and I mean, am not gonna fall prey to the hype. But today, I had to come forth with another blog post. I was compelled by the comments under many of the pictures posted of her and her girl gang at the Super Bowl and how some folks were actually seeing it as a Powerful Movement, a statement about Black Power, a high five to Malcolm X, and the insane indicators of it being an Illuminati ritual. But what really took me to the top of the clock was the actual lyrics, which in no way seem to reflect any of this, in fact quite the contrary. So here I am again, with something to rant on about That!!!
“Thank you for this. You know how you witness something and something inside you goes off and tells you that there is something wrong with this because inside of you, you can feel it going in all kinds of different directions. Well, thanks again, I really appreciate you posting those lyrics!!”
JUSTICE OR ELSE?
How can we make any kind of impact or change if we are too weak, brainwashed and conditioned to stop participating in their holidays? I always say that this time of year is the most blatant celebration of white supremacy ever! White Jesus, white Christmas and giving all your money to the white man, going into debt for a capitalistic economy and it’s banksters who could care less about you or anyone in your family who suffered under police brutality.
Oklahoma ex-cop guilty of rape in sex abuse case involving 13 women
I always wondered about this connection between firearms and sex. Stay with me here. One day I had a dream as I was trying to figure out why rape and war go together. In this dream I was told that men shooting guns actually get sexually aroused and that once that happens they need to relieve themselves so they rape. It is also about power and control. If you look at the language used when describing sexual intercourse, you get words like “firing his shot”, “blasted” “busted” and various other metaphors for what it means when a man ejaculates. And then there are these synonyms: emission, ejection, discharge, release, expulsion.
So, we have in this story, a barrage of senseless bullets shooting up a car where clearly the men had to be dead long before 377 shots to their vehicle. Are we dealing more with sexually frustrated men who have to act in this manner? Are we dealing with men who ejaculate too quickly? Are we dealing with men who can’t seem to satisfy their partners and who feel so inept that by this obscene show of force they can, ejaculate over and over and over, hundreds of times without needing to stop and regroup? Are they insecure because after on orgasm it’s over for them, whereas by assaulting someone while wearing a badge they can “orgasm” over and over and over again?
I hadn’t thought about the sexual implications of war and police brutality in that way before. But It always appeared to me to have sexual overtones. When you watch how the police force suspects into handcuffs. Or how they “knock” you to the ground in a what appears to be sadomaschistic demonstration of dominance over someone they have rendered weak and helpless.
We keep looking at the sociopathic indicators that this type of behavior reveals, but I am wondering if we are missing an even deeper psychosis. Are we actually looking at folks who have sexual hangups, possibly sexual abuse and assault in their own history? Are we looking at a sexual perversion that can be shrouded in a uniform and a badge where a take down is imminent? Do these folks have a license to kill?? Or a license to rape, mentally, emotionally, physically and psychically?
I remember years ago noticing that weapons tend to resemble, in some way, the male phallic. From guns to to rockets to bombs they all look the same. The male phallic. Does this mean that there is an innate insecurity that men have about their manhood which is many instances is determined by their sexual prowess, however distorted this perception may be. What do bombs, guns etc. do? They penetrate, they explode, they ejaculate.
We have been living in an era of the Patriarchy for the past several thousand years. Male dominion over all life on Earth, particularly when looking at Male dominion in so many religions, politics, economics and social institutions around the world. It is expected that men should dominate! If a man does not carry that energy he is considered effeminate and a disgrace. Looking at our world we are seeing how this distortion has lead to more destruction and chaos since the days of the Gladiators.
The male principle in its desire to have dominion over all has become so distorted that the idea of freedom. peace, justice etc. is skewed and gleaned through the lens of destruction. Their creations have become destructive toys that hurt, maim and kill.
Frustrated, insecure and competitive men with killing toys are running our world and the consequences are devastating.
Excerpt: “In prison, infliction of mental and physical agony on helpless captives provides sexual pleasure to sick individuals. No penetration is needed, violent predators value power and control more. Sandra’s treatment, particularly isolation, are techniques found in CIA prisons and Guantanamo Bay. They are unbearable and leave no marks. The UN calls it torture.” Read More:
In my opinion, any editing of the information released to the authorities is suspect. In this video there is a shot you may want to check out. Sandra has a huge lump on her head that has been obviously photoshopped out. Here’s the link to that photo. http://www.conspiracyclub.co/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/ne55be5a07.jpg
Why did they do that? I am still suspicious and I don’t think the person in the video of Sandra in a orange jumpsuit is Sandra, maybe another person from another time, maybe it’s staged, with no timestamp and no identifying info on this video it could have come from anywhere.
Proof that Sandra Bland’s Mug Shot Was Edited & Why: http://www.conspiracyclub.co/2015/08/02/sandra-blands-mug-shot-edit/
Police abuse doesn’t get much more flagrant than this. Recently dozens of Miami-Dade police officers filled Adrian Montesano’s vehicle with 377 bullet holes, shot from every imaginable angle.
The frenzied show of police force was described by witnesses as “chaotic” and “contagious” in nature.
The vehicle’s 2 occupants had been trying to surrender, but 23 police officers in total decided to act as judge, jury and executions, shooting up the car, the suspects and also neighboring houses, businesses, vehicles. Even fellow police officers were hit by the insane barrage of bullets from the high capacity magazines carried in triplicate by each officer.
The events began back in the early morning hours of December 10th, 2013, but questions about the massive show of police force have begun to mount in the community.
Adrian Montesano had already crashed, and his vehicle remained pinned between a utility pole and a tree after an earlier police pursuit around 5:00 a.m.
Dozens of officers aimed their M4 assault rifles, as well as high capacity handguns towards the from every angle, and for several minutes, they shot round after round into the unarmed suspects.
Anthony Vandiver witnesses the assault from his house. He ran upstairs to watch the whole thing unfold, from a perfect, unobstructed view.“They said, ‘put your hands up!’ And the guys were still moving after they shot, like maybe 50-60 times,” Mr. Vandiver told CBS-4 Miami. “And the guys tried to put their hands up, and as soon as they put their hands up, it erupted again.”
Read more: Counter Current News
Racist Killing Fields in the U.S.: The Death of Sandra Bland Posted on Jul 23, 2015 By Henry A. Giroux, Truthout
Racist Killing Fields in the U.S.: The Death of Sandra Bland
Posted on Jul 23, 2015
By Henry A. Giroux, Truthout
|Sandra Bland, 28 years old|
On July 9, soon after Sandra Bland, a 28-year-old African-American woman, moved to Texas from Naperville, Illinois, to take a new job as a college outreach officer at her alma mater, Prairie View A&M, she was pulled over by the police for failing to signal while making a lane change. What followed has become all too common and illustrates the ever-increasing rise in domestic terrorism in the United States. She was pulled out of the car by the police for allegedly becoming combative, and was pinned to the ground by two officers. A video obtained by ABC 7 of Bland’s arrest “doesn’t appear to show Bland being combative with officers but does show two officers on top of Bland.”
A witness reported that “he saw the arresting officer pull Bland out of the car, throw her to the ground and put his knee on her neck while he arrested her.” In the video, Bland can be heard questioning the officers’ methods of restraint. She says: “You just slammed my head to the ground. Do you not even care about that? I can’t even hear.” She was then arrested for assaulting an officer, a third-degree felony, and interned at the Waller County, Texas, jail. On July 13, she was found dead in her cell. Quite unbelievably, the police reported that she took her own life, and the Waller County Jail is trying to rule her death a suicide. Friends and family say that this scenario is inconceivable, given what they know about Sandra: She was a young woman starting a new job, who was eagerly looking forward to her future.
Sandra Bland was an outspoken civil rights activist critical of police brutality. She often posted videos in which she talked about important civil rights issues, and once stated: “I’m here to change history. If we want a change we can really truly make it happen.”
Sandra Bland’s family and friends believe that foul play was involved in her death, and rightly so. Their belief is bolstered by the fact that the head sheriff of Waller County, Glenn Smith, who made the first public comments about Bland’s in-custody death, was suspended for documented cases of racism when he was chief of police in Hempstead, Texas, in 2007. After serving his suspension, more complaints of racism came in, and Smith was actually fired as chief of police in Hempstead.”
Bland’s death over a routine traffic stop is beyond monstrous. It is indicative of a country where extreme violence is the norm – a society fed by the legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, the incarceration state, the drug wars and the increasing militarization of everything, including the war on Black youth. There is more at stake here than the fact that, as federal statistics indicate, the police are “31 percent more likely to pull over a Black driver than a white driver”: Routine traffic stops for Black drivers contain the real possibility of turning deadly. This regular violence propels a deeply racist and militarized society. It is a violence that turns on young people and adults alike who are considered disposable. This type of harassment is integral to a form of domestic terrorism in which Black people are routinely beaten, arrested, incarcerated and too often killed. This is the new totalitarianism of the boot-in-your-face racism, one in which the punishing state is the central institution for both controlling poor people of color and enforcing the rules of the financial elite. How much longer can this war on youth go on?
CONFIRMED: Dashcam Video of Sandra Bland’s Violent Arrest was Indeed Edited Read more at
The United States has become a country that is proud of what is should be ashamed of. How else to explain the popularity of the racist and bigot, Donald Trump, among the Republican Party’s right-wing base? We celebrate violence in the name of security and violate every precept of human justice through an appeal to fear. This speaks clearly to a form of political repression and a toxic value system. Markets and power are immune to justice, and despise it. All that matters is that control – financial and political – serves soulless markets and the Darwinian culture of cruelty. How many more young people are going to be killed for walking in the street, failing to signal a lane shift, looking a police officer in the eye, or playing with a toy gun? How many more names of Black men, women and young people will join the list of those whose deaths have sparked widespread protests: Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, Renisha McBride, Aiyana Jones and Sakia Gunn, among many others – and now, Sandra Bland. Is it any wonder that one funeral director in Chicago stated that “young people in the city do not expect to live late into their adult life”? Moreover, police violence in the United States is not only a direct manifestation of state violence, but also serves as a gateway to prison, especially for people of color and the poor.
Yet, the mainstream media is more infatuated with game shows, financial brutishness, celebrities and the idiocy of Donald Trump than they are concerned about the endless violence waged against poor children of color in the United States. This violence speaks clearly to a society that no longer wants to invest in its youth. And if one measure of a democratic society is how it treats young people, the United States has failed miserably.
The form that the “war on terror” has taken at home is a war on poor people of color, especially Black people. Racism and police militarization have created a new kind of terrorism, one in which extreme violence is being used against Black people for the most trivial of infractions. The killing of Black youth by the police – a norm that stretches back, in an unbroken line of terror, to slavery – takes the form of both routine affair and spectacle. Nowadays, acts of domestic terrorism perpetrated by police take place increasingly in full view of the US public, who more and more are witnessing such lawlessness after it is recorded and uploaded onto the internet by bystanders. New technologies now enable individuals to record such violence in real time and make it a matter of public record. While this public display of the deployment domestic terrorism is undeniably crucial, in that it makes visible the depravity of state violence, these images are sometimes co-opted by the mass media, commodified, and disseminated in ways that can exploit – and even attempt to erase – Black lives, as William C. Anderson argues.
In the current environment, racial violence is so commonplace that when it is perpetrated by the police against innocent people, justice is not measured by holding those who commit the violence accountable. The official measure of justice is simply that the presence of violence be noted, by the authorities and the mainstream media. Few of the most powerful people seem distraught by the ongoing shootings, beatings, and killings of African-Americans in a society in which a Black man is killed every 28 hours in the US by police, vigilantes or security guards.
In a country in which militarism is viewed as an ideal and the police and soldiers are treated like heroes, violence becomes the primary modality for solving problems. One consequence is that state violence is either ignored, rendered trivial or shamelessly legitimated in the name of the law, security or self-defense. State violence fueled by the merging of the war on terror, the militarization of all aspects of society, and a deep-seated, ruthless and unapologetic racism is now ubiquitous and should be labeled as a form of domestic terrorism. Terrorism, torture and state violence are no longer simply part of our history; they have become the nervous system of an increasingly authoritarian state. Eric Garner told the police as he was being choked to death that he could not breathe. His words also apply to democracy itself, which is lacking the civic oxygen that gives it life. The United States is a place where democracy cannot breathe.
This authoritarianism fueled by the mainstream press, which seems especially interested in stories in which it can (wrongfully) frame victims as assailants, as in the case of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, but is less interested when the old stereotypes about crime and Black culture cannot be invoked. When dominant forces cannot figure out a way to label victims of police violence “thugs” – consider the case of Tamir Rice, who was only 12 years old when shot to death by a policeman who in his previous police assignment in another city was labeled as “unstable” – such acts of state terrorism often fade out of the mainstream view.
Why was there not a more sustained and mainstream public outcry over the case of Kalief Browder, a young Black man who was arrested for a crime he did not commit and incarcerated at the notorious Rikers Island for than a one thousand days – two years of that time in solitary confinement – waiting for a trial that never happened? Shortly after being released he committed suicide. Would this have happened if he were white, middle class and had access to a lawyer? How is what happened to him parallel to the egregious torture inflicted on innocent children at Abu Ghraib prison?
Not surprisingly, the discourse of “terrorism” once again is only used when someone is engaged in a plot to commit violence against the government – but not when the state commits violence unjustly against its own citizens. What needs to be recognized, as Robin D. G. Kelley has pointed out, is that the killing of unarmed African Americans by the police is not simply a matter that speaks to the need for reforming the police and the culture that shapes it, but also for massive organized resistance against a war on Black youth that is being waged on US soil. The call for police “reform,” echoed throughout the dominant media, is meaningless. We need to change a system steeped in violence, racism, economic corruption and institutional rot. We don’t need revenge, we need justice – and that means structural change.
Ending police misconduct is certainly acceptable as short-term goal to save lives, but if we are going to prevent the United States from becoming a full-fledged police state serving the interests of the rich who ensconce themselves in their gated and guarded communities, the vicious neoliberal financial and police state has to be dismantled. Such resistance has taken shape with the emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement, along with youth movements such as the Black Youth Project, Million Hoodies, We Charge Genocide and other groups.
A new brutalism haunts America, drenched in the flood of intolerable police and state violence. Millions of people are being locked up, jailed, beaten, harassed and violated by the police and other security forces, simply because they are Black, Brown, young and/or poor, and therefore viewed as disposable. Black youth are safe neither in their own neighborhoods nor on public streets, highways, schools – or any other areas in which the police can be found.
In reality, when folks are connected to that which is around them, they are less likely to tear it up. But when you have disenfranchised people who are neither cared about or engaged and encouraged to be apart of what is around them in their environment, but instead are told to walk here, be there, leave this and don’t interfere with that, they are alienated. How many of those who riot are gainfully employed by the establishments that surround them? How many of them own the property? How many of them are even co-owners? How many of them care and how many of them are “unaware” that these establishments have insurance to cover damages.
By Monica Alba
“The Los Angeles Police Department’s response to the Rodney King riots 22 years ago could provide a blueprint for what happens in the coming months and years in Ferguson, Missouri, as police work to repair their reputation in the wake of Michael Brown’s fatal shooting, according to experts on the LAPD’s transformation.” READ MORE
When people are policed and restrained, ordered and separated, they will not feel attached to their environment. They will see the environment as much of the enemy as they will see the Police or the so-called “Authority that Polices them”. They will not see or feel a connection to their environment but will feel caged and imprisoned by it.
Systemic racism and re-gentrification alienates the inhabitants of the community, particularly as business and corporations set up shop in the communities they do not live in. They are more representative of the oppressors than they are considered neighbors. The businesses set up in these communities have an ingrained attitude about the inhabitants of the communities that they are financially benefited by. They do not see them as humans but more as commodities. They are as alienated from those whom they depend on to support them financially as those who spend their money there.
EXCERPT: “There was an uprising on social media calling for a violent protest to take place, and resultantly things exploded yesterday afternoon in northwestern Baltimore around the area where Gray’s funeral had taken place that morning. Images of looting, destruction, arson, and violence have since streamed from the area as the city was placed under a state of emergency.”
It may appear reckless to riot but rioting is a deeper sign of an even deeper chasm between the haves and the have-nots. When people are actively involved in their own communities that they feel an ownership of and an ability to control, they are less likely to be destructive. It’s simply human nature, and to expect what happened in Baltimore to fall outside of the confines of human nature is cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance is denial of what is truly the cause of what is happening when people riot.
By Evette D. Champion
EXCERPT: In the midst of the rioting that is going on in Baltimore, many people are thinking that rioting and looting is something that has only been done within the past 50 years to show civil unrest. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Did you know that this country was founded on looting and riots?
During the 1760s in Boston, Massachusetts, there was a lot of political activity going on that rose a lot of eyebrows and ruffled a few feathers. The early settlers were in the midst of constant and violent protests against the British. A lot of the credit for the Revolution belongs to Sam Adams and the group called “Sons of Liberty.” READ MORE
EXCERPT: “A local militia, believed to be a terrorist organization, attacked the property of private citizens today at our nation’s busiest port,” the part of the curriculum pertaining to the Boston Tea Party reads, according to CBS Houston. “Although no one was injured in the attack, a large quantity of merchandise, considered to be valuable to its owners and loathsome to the perpetrators, was destroyed. The terrorists, dressed in disguise and apparently intoxicated, were able to escape into the night with the help of local citizens who harbor these fugitives and conceal their identities from the authorities.” READ MORE
Cop Killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley Had Pocket Full of $100 Bills – But No Job or Home
Saturday, December 20th, was a big day for movement news. While Minnesota’s Mall of America protest had people occupying space in the US’s largest mall to demand an end to police violence, half way across the country in Brooklyn, two police officers were shot and killed by a young black man who had ostensibly posted on social media before the shootings about his intention to “put wings on pigs”, citing revenge for the deaths of Brown and Garner as motive. The accused shooter, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, shot himself dead on a nearby subway platform after shooting the officers. As of Sunday afternoon, there is little information and much speculation about the accused murderer’s life (including that the murders were part of a counter-intelligence plot to discredit the movement and justify extreme force). Much is uncertain, but it’s certain that the NYPD is already using this to suppress protest, repress entire communities, and further foment divisive public relations–especially with NYC Mayor deBlasio. How can recent police union behavior and statements be considered anything but a naked admission of a police force’s own extra-legal/ paramilitary ambitions?
At this writing we do know a few things for certain: the corporate state’s policing apparatus will do everything in its power to use this event as a further call to arms against protesting U.S. residents and communities of color. They will attempt not only to discredit a growing direct action-based movement, but also to aggressively attack protest groups and individuals they have been trying to get their hands on anyway. If Ismaaiyl Brinsley had been arrested and charged with the killing of two police officers in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, clearly the anti-policing movement would be having very different debates and discussions. Now, in his death, many people righteously struggle to contextualize his motives or opportunistically use his actions for their own political reasons.
Not that probing Brinsley’s motives is entirely irrelevant–he shot a woman, possibly an ex-girlfriend, before the officers, for example– but the movement can hurt itself by participating in the posthumous quasi-legalistic media charade of “nailing down” his motives or state of mind. (This activity already inculcates participants in the state’s judgmental logic of condemnation/ exoneration–echoing media character assassinations of murder by police victims like Brown and Martin.) What if he was acting in concert with counter-intelligence forces? What if Mao’s little red book was in Brinsley’s pocket? What if he was an active member of a local Cop Watch group? What if he was a well-known local homeless man struggling with mental illness and addiction?
Initial activist reactions offer a range of responses: some grapple with the delicate issue of expressing compassion about the shooter’s life, death, and family; some timidly, or not so timidly, tiptoe around self-defense concepts and a deep understanding of the extreme nature of “revolutionary suicide”; some routinely denounce Brinsley’s actions–acting as guardians of the “real non-violent movement” against “unstable violent outsiders”; some have decided that was a police action he got entangled in. Then there’s those (new to the issue white activists, I am talking to you) who may have been active and supportive of the anti-police brutality movement, but will use this as an excuse to pull back. (Controversial events function as a movement’s filtering process, losing people who are too challenged to keep fighting and were just waiting for a chance to fold anyway.)
If there’s anything I am reminded of by this event, it’s the power of social movements, and anti-racist struggles in particular. For me, there is a connection between the cop murders and the movement. Before you jump down my throat insisting that I am “feeding the cops’ ideology” by saying this–hear me out, please, and don’t take my statements out of context. Since the drug war and mass incarceration/ deportation practices, many black and brown lives have been destroyed. You don’t have to be a front lines long term activist to have strong opinions about policing and institutional racism in America, and feel hopeless in the face of it, too. Frustration and anger is woven into the everyday fabric of people’s lives, and this includes individual consciousness, rhetoric, and self-understanding. Add to this an endless flow of social media, news commentary, and live feeds of protests and demonstrations all over the U.S. Some people may not be able to attend protests for various reasons (work, childcare, transportation, not living close to one, or a shy demeanor) but social media offers a strong way to feel emotionally connected to events since Ferguson began.
This access and ability to connect is both reason for the movement’s effectiveness and a reason to prepare for more controversial actions taken up by individuals in the name of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, or against violent police generally. (And then there’s always police counterinsurgency activities…) In a large, multifaceted, international movement such that the Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!/ anti-policing movement has become, no one can ultimately judge who’s a protestor or a non-protestor, who cares or doesn’t care, about “the issues”. (Who has an authentic political consciousness gauge and where can I get one?) We can only state if we support certain actions as part of strategies our organizations or ideologies endorse.
I believe, from what I understand about Brinsley’s biographical facts and his presumed state of mind before the murders, he understood himself as a target of racist policing. Go figure: young, black, and male in the U.S. A. But, As Dr. Johanna Fernandez wrote in CounterPunch, he could have also been acting in concert with authorities to execute a state plot to discredit the movement. We will never know the facts here, and it shouldn’t deflect from our understanding of institutionalized racism, anyway.
Whether or not Brinsley acted alone or in concert with the state, his life had a truly tragic end. If we admit understanding or empathy with people espousing extreme tactics — even cop murder — to express oppositional feelings, are we only throwing the police state, and its rabid NYPD, another reason for street level preemptive attack? (As if it ever needed a reason. We’ve clearly seen over the decades, if the state doesn’t have a reason to justify aggression it’ll make one up.) What about attempts to understand how social pressures like racist policing and mass incarceration damage people–like Ismaaiyl Brinsley? If we deny a careful consideration of the incalculable impacts movements can have, which include tapping into very real frustrations/ psychological dynamics leading individuals to act alone or as police agents, we sacrifice any potential unity than can be derived in a process of self-reflection and greater political awareness. Collective analysis may not lead to the unity of a shared position, but it could lead to an “agree to disagree” unity or a commitment to explore unpopular perspectives. Something beyond simple condemnation or exultation is called for here.
It’s a daunting situation and the corporate state wins again if we play into the terms of engagement it always sets by the very nature of its power. If Ismaaiyl Brinsley had survived and faced his accusers in court, we would see the movement split around “just” court procedures and outcomes. Some would want him evaluated to qualify for mental health rehabilitation services, some would want him routinely punished, and some would call for his freedom, with an understanding his actions were committed under extreme duress due to the pernicious police state apparatus (a kind of “black rage” defense– if you will.) From the looks of his social media posts, he knew he was probably going to die Saturday.
I shudder to think about what the state would do to Brinsley, and how the movement would split around his “just” punishment and desirable “rehabilitation.” (How are we going to rehabilitate psychotic racist police? Any ideas?) We would have to painfully endure a real trial of the Left’s anti-policing/ abolitionist positions. Instead, we are left to grapple with three dead bodies, many unanswered questions, and a big question mark about our ability to buoy the turbulence of building and sustaining a mass movement, focused specifically on the deep and festering wound of racist police violence, in the age of social media activism.
On Tuesday police Commissioner William Bratton said Ismaaiyl was carrying $100 bills in his pocket.
But he had no job or home.The Yeshiva World reported:
If we are going to posthumously speculate on Ismaaiyl Brinsley’s life, dare I suggest we use the very commitment to institutional analysis and human compassion that has served as a foundation of the Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!/ anti-policing movement–and previous anti-racist movements– since its inception? As the saying goes, let’s “keep our eyes on the prize.”
Michelle Renee Matisons, Ph.D. has written for Counterpunch, Black Agenda Report, Z Magazine, Mint News Press, the NJ Decarcerator, Rethinking Schools, Alternet, and other publications. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
John W. Whitehead
If you dress police officers up as soldiers and you put them in military vehicles and you give them military weapons, they adopt a warrior mentality. We fight wars against enemies, and the enemies are the people who live in our cities — particularly in communities of color. — Thomas Nolan, criminology professor and former police officer.
Ferguson matters because it provides us with a foretaste of what is to come. It is the shot across the bow, so to speak, a warning that this is how we will all be treated if we do not tread cautiously in challenging the police state, and it won’t matter whether we’re black or white, rich or poor, Republican or Democrat. In the eyes of the corporate state, we are all the enemy.
This is the lesson of Ferguson.
Remember that in the wake of the shooting, Ferguson police officers clad in body armor, their faces covered with masks, equipped with assault rifles and snipers and riding armored vehicles, showed up in force to deal with protesters. Describing that show of force by police in Ferguson, Senator Claire McCaskill, Democrat of Missouri, stated, “This was a military force, and they were facing down an enemy.”
Yes, we are the enemy. As I point out in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, since those first towers fell on 9/11, the American people have been treated like enemy combatants, to be spied on, tracked, scanned, frisked, searched, subjected to all manner of intrusions, intimidated, invaded, raided, manhandled, censored, silenced, shot at, locked up, and denied due process.
There was a moment of hope after Ferguson that perhaps things might change. Perhaps the balance would be restored between the citizenry and their supposed guardians, the police. Perhaps our elected officials would take our side for a change and oppose the militarization of the police. Perhaps warfare would take a backseat to more pressing national concerns.
That hope was short-lived.
It wasn’t long before the media moved on to other, more titillating stories. The disappearance of a University of Virginia college student and the search for her alleged abductor, the weeks-long man-hunt for an accused cop killer, the Republican electoral upset, a Rolling Stone expose on gang rapes at fraternity parties, Obama’s immigration amnesty plan, and the rape charges against Bill Cosby are just a few of the stories that have dominated the news cycle since the Ferguson standoff between police and protesters.
It wasn’t long before the American public, easily acclimated to news of government wrongdoing (case in point: the national yawn over the NSA’s ongoing domestic surveillance), ceased to be shocked, outraged or alarmed by reports of police shootings. In fact, the issue was nowhere to be found in this year’s run-up to Election Day, which was largely devoid of any pressing matters of national concern.
And with nary a hiccup, the police state marched steadily forth. In fact, aided and abetted by the citizenry’s short attention span, its easily distracted nature, and its desensitization to anything that occupies the news cycle for too long, it has been business as usual in terms of police shootings, the amassing of military weapons, and the government’s sanctioning of police misconduct. Most recently, Ohio police shot and killed a 12-year-old boy who was seen waving a toy gun at a playground.
Rubbing salt in our wounds, in the wake of Ferguson, police agencies not only continued to ramp up their military arsenals but have used them whenever possible. In fact, in anticipation of the grand jury’s ruling, St. Louis police actually purchased more equipment for its officers, including “civil disobedience equipment.”
Just a few weeks after the Ferguson showdown, law enforcement agencies took part in an $11 million manhunt in Pennsylvania for alleged cop killer Eric Frein. Without batting an eye, the news media switched from outraged “shock” over the military arsenal employed by police in Ferguson to respectful “awe” of the 48-day operation that cost taxpayers $1.4 million per week in order to carry out a round-the-clock dragnet search of an area with a 5-mile-radius.
The Frein operation brought together 1,000 officers from local, state and federal law enforcement, as well as SWAT teams and cutting edge military equipment (high-powered rifles, body armor, infrared sensors, armored trucks, helicopters and unmanned, silent surveillance blimps) — some of the very same weapons and tactics employed in Ferguson and, a year earlier, in Boston in the wake of the marathon bombing.
The manhunt was a well-timed, perfectly choreographed exercise in why Americans should welcome the police state: for our safety, of course, and to save the lives of police officers.
Opposed to any attempt to demilitarize America’s police forces, the Dept. of Homeland Security has been chanting this safety mantra in testimony before Congress: Remember 9/11. Remember Boston. Remember how unsafe the world was before police were equipped with automatic weapons, heavily armored trucks, night-vision goggles, and aircraft donated by the DHS.
Contrary to DHS rhetoric, however, militarized police — twitchy over perceived dangers, hyped up on their authority, and protected by their agencies, the legislatures and the courts — have actually made communities less safe at a time when violent crime is at an all-time low and lumberjacks, fishermen, airline pilots, roofers, construction workers, trash collectors, electricians and truck drivers all have a higher risk of on-the-job fatalities than police officers.
Moreover, as Senator Tom Coburn points out, the militarization of America’s police forces has actually “created some problems that wouldn’t have been there otherwise.” Among those problems: a rise in the use of SWAT team raids for routine law enforcement activities (averaging 80,000 a year), a rise in the use and abuse of asset forfeiture laws by police agencies, a profit-driven incentive to criminalize lawful activities and treat Americans as suspects, and a transformation of the nation’s citizenry into suspects.
Ferguson provided us with an opportunity to engage in a much-needed national dialogue over how police are trained, what authority they are given, what weaponry they are provided, and how they treat those whom they are entrusted with protecting.
Caught up in our personal politics, prejudices and class warfare, we have failed to answer that call. In so doing, we have played right into the hands of all those corporations who profit from turning America into a battlefield by selling the government mine-resistant vehicles, assault rifles, grenade launchers, and drones.
As long as we remain steeped in ignorance, there will be no reform.
As long as we remain divided by our irrational fear of each other, there will be no overhaul in the nation’s law enforcement system or institution of an oversight process whereby communities can ensure that local police departments are acting in accordance with their wishes and values.
And as long as we remain distracted by misguided loyalties to military operatives who are paid to play the part of the government’s henchmen, there will be no saving us when the events of Ferguson unfold in our own backyards.
When all is said and done, it doesn’t matter whose “side” you’re on as far as what transpired in Ferguson, whether you believe that Michael Brown was a victim or that Darren Wilson was justified in shooting first and asking questions later.
What matters is that we not allow politics and deep-rooted prejudices of any sort to divert our efforts to restore some level of safety, sanity and constitutional balance to the role that police officers play in our communities. If we fail to do so, we will have done a disservice to ourselves and every man, woman and child in this country who have become casualties of the American police state.
Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute where this article first appeared. He is the author of A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State and The Change Manifesto.