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Fri Jun 5, 2020, 06:32 PM

The Police Are Rioting. We Need to Talk About It.


The Police Are Rioting. We Need to Talk About It.
It is an attack on civil society and democratic accountability.
By Jamelle Bouie
June 5, 2020

If we’re going to speak of rioting protesters, then we need to speak of rioting police as well. No, they aren’t destroying property. But it is clear from news coverage, as well as countless videos taken by protesters and bystanders, that many police are using often indiscriminate violence against people — against anyone, including the peaceful majority of demonstrators, who happens to be in the streets.

Rioting police have driven vehicles into crowds, reproducing the assault that killed Heather Heyer in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017. They have surrounded a car, smashed the windows, tazed the occupants and dragged them out onto the ground. Clad in paramilitary gear, they have attacked elderly bystanders, pepper-sprayed cooperative protesters and shot “nonlethal” rounds directly at reporters, causing serious injuries. In Austin, Texas, a 20-year-old man is in critical condition after being shot in the head with a “less-lethal” round. Across the country, rioting police are using tear gas in quantities that threaten the health and safety of demonstrators, especially in the midst of a respiratory disease pandemic.

None of this quells disorder. Everything, from the militaristic posture to the attacks themselves, does more to inflame and agitate protesters than it does to calm the situation and bring order to the streets. In effect, rioting police have done as much to stoke unrest and destabilize the situation as those responsible for damaged buildings and burning cars. But where rioting protesters can be held to account for destruction and violence, rioting police have the imprimatur of the state.

What we’ve seen from rioting police, in other words, is an assertion of power and impunity. In the face of mass anger over police brutality, they’ve effectively said So what? In the face of demands for change and reform — in short, in the face of accountability to the public they’re supposed to serve — they’ve bucked their more conciliatory colleagues with a firm No. In which case, if we want to understand the behavior of the past two weeks, we can’t just treat it as an explosion of wanton violence, we have to treat it as an attack on civil society and democratic accountability, one rooted in a dispute over who has the right to hold the police to account.

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Reply The Police Are Rioting. We Need to Talk About It. (Original post)
dalton99a Jun 5 OP
FirstLight Jun 5 #1
Ferrets are Cool Jun 5 #2

Response to dalton99a (Original post)

Fri Jun 5, 2020, 06:43 PM

1. Fuckers.... all of 'em

We're going to have about 3 or 4 factions in the Civil War part deux:

BLM's and Those who want change (mostly peaceful)
Police & Military
White Militia

our streets are becoming more like "battlespaces" every day.

One thing about reform, would be to license cops like dr's and therapists... where you have to continue to take certain CEU's and renew every other year. I know a friend who is an LCSW and she must complete 6 CEU's every year, with a certain # of hours specifically on Suicide Prevention. They can make those kinds of oversights possible for all cops.

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Response to dalton99a (Original post)

Fri Jun 5, 2020, 06:54 PM

2. K and R for TRUTH

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