The group that calls itself “Disarm the NYPD” also wants to create zones safe from on-duty police, and will encourage residents, businesses, and charities to replace traditional law enforcement structures as well as to create dispute resolution models.
(If you can’t see the Tweets in their entirety, hold down Control and press -, then +, and they should justify.)
“One member of the group told reporters at Waging Nonviolence that “We feel that the police have proven that they’re not responsible enough to carry arms due to the fact that they’ve been killing people so consistently for so many decades, we feel that they should be disarmed immediately. We’ve all been organizing for years,” said the member of Disarm NYPD. “After Ferguson, we got really inspired and started organizing during the demonstrations. And we figured — since it’s getting warm, and especially since that Ferguson report came out — that we need to start taking more action. We can’t let things fall apart. We have to keep the pressure on the police.”
“We want to use these copwatch patrol units … to keep the pressure on [the police] so they can back up, and when they back up, we want to try to fill that space with something that can create new, revolutionary potentials. And we’d like everyone to take part in that,” they said.”
Jose LaSalle of Copwatch has recently teamed up with the group and said that “We’re not doing this just for ourselves, we’re doing this because we want to create an impact on the community and empower the community.”
The author, John Vibes, links the movement to the concept agorism, which he describes as a strategy of noncompliance with the existing power structure, including dark markets, bitcoin, mutual aid societies, local food farming, community bartering systems, alternative or ‘home schooling’…any tactics that are human-centric and subvert the power structure monopolies. We might add in worker cooperative businesses, developing local or regional public banking, heirloom seed exchanges, and more. ‘Occupy’ endeavors, really, which are still going strong behind the scenes.
“Authority is made to be abused, and as long as police are given the special legal and economic treatment that they currently enjoy, the authority that they derive through those protections will continue to be abused. There is no reason why the vital function of community defense should be monopolized by the state, which is traditionally corrupt in itself.
Decentralized policing is already happening in many parts of the country. For an example, check out this video below, and learn about how decentralized groups that are not affiliated with the government are making the communities that they live in safer, without the need for aggressive force.”
From their website, a few excerpts:
“Racism and violence have been mainstays of the police since their inception, but in recent years awareness of the abhorrent behavior of the police—punctuated by the callous murders of unarmed black people—has incited rebellions all over the United States. The rebellions in Ferguson and beyond mark the genesis of a new political reality in America. The role of the police in poor communities cannot be obscured any longer. The police are a political/military entity bestowed with the authority to kill undesirable people with impunity. This is the reality of the situation. Disarm the NYPD will immediately act to end this reality. Disarm the NYPD has two immediate organizational goals. We will disarm the police of their guns and we will disarm them as a viable political/military entity in the neighborhoods they occupy. Through this campaign we will devise a new political vision for the city and the country as a whole.
How many people have died at the hands of the police? The facebook page Killed By Police has tallied 1450 in 15 months. That’s 1,100 per year or 3 people per day.
While these numbers are distressing it is impossible to quantify the heartbreak these statistics represent. The quivering face of a wife who knows her husband is not coming home ever again; or the tears pouring down a child’s face because he’ll never see his father alive is a truth that has become all too common place, and is far too difficult to elaborate on with these numbers.
The African American experience is one of constant humiliation and dehumanization. In actuality, the relationship with the larger world for black Americans becomes a form of total policing. The struggle against the status quo is, in essence, a fight for human renewal; a battle to secure some form of basic humanity that has been stripped away since American slavery.”
Now we know that killing of Latina/Latinas, the mentally ill, homeless, and Native Americans are all too common as well, but the same experiences hold true for them, especially depending on class, or more to the point: expendable, undesirable class, and the killing has to stop.
The anti-police brutality movement seems to have stalled just a bit, so I’m glad to hear that these folks believe that spring is here now, and this effort could push it forward toward a more just society for all of our brothers and sisters.
In March the group began holding panels for the local citizenry, and teaming up with CopWatch groups like José Lasalle’s, who’s been holding CopWatch trainings in aid of letting police know that citizens are not only watching them, but are ready to point their cameras at them:
“We want to use these copwatch patrol units … to keep the pressure on [the police] so they can back up,” one member of Disarm NYPD said. “And when they back up, we want to try to fill that space with something that can create new, revolutionary potentials. And we’d like everyone to take part in that.” (more here at wagingNonviloence.org about a similar movement in the Bronx) And of course there will be many more considerations, ‘what if’s’, and ‘but…but’s’ to answer, but: it’s a good start, yes? There are a number of mega-detractors at both sites, as you can see.
Some recent on-point stories:
From the Free Thought Project: Whistleblower Cop: Fellow Officers Getting “Gang Tattoos” To Celebrate Their Shooting Victims
“A former officer with the Oxnard Police Department in California is blowing the whistle on a disturbing activity that many other cops at the department are taking part in.
The anonymous whistleblower is in talks with private investigators about how some officers with the department in Oxnard were getting tattoos on their left shoulders as “notches” to signify their shooting victims.
This is much the same way that gang members get tattoos of different styles to signify their victims.
Initially the former officer brought these details to independent media organization “American Justice Notebook”, who then passed the information along to private investigators and the police chief. The former officer wished to keep his identity private, as a confidential informant, because he fears retaliation from the other officers.
The former Oxnard police officer told American Justice Notebook that officers who have been involved in shootings, regardless of circumstances, will many times get a tattoo of a gun on their left shoulder. With each victim that the officer kills, a puff of gun smoke would allegedly be added to the tattoo. The gun smoke in the tattoos are reportedly shaped like a skull and cross bones.
“I can tell you that we are reviewing the matter. I will not comment on any specific allegations or any specific questions that you have posed. Also, I cannot give you a timetable as to how long our review will take,” Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the Justice Department told reporters by email on last Tuesday.
However, it does seem odd that an investigation into this matter would take a long time, considering that a quick look at the left shoulder of each officer on the force would solve the mystery in just a few minutes.
Additionally, the whistleblower also provided the names of seven Oxnard officers and two retired officers who allegedly had the tattoos, making the investigation even easier. Some of the names mentioned in the report are commanding officers at the department.
The Oxnard Police Department is also currently dealing with a wrongful death controversy, where four officers shot an innocent bystander 16 to 21 times and saw no consequences.”
It was the same Oxnard PD that gunned down26-year-old black Meagan Hockaday, mother of three young children on March 24.
“At 1 a.m., a man called authorities about a domestic dispute between him and his live-in girlfriend in an apartment in the 500 block of West Vineyard Avenue.
As an officer at the scene began talking to the man who reported the argument, the woman approached them with a knife. An officer-involved shooting occurred and the woman, identified as Meagan Hockaday, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The shooting took place less than 20 seconds after the officer’s first contact, police officials said.”
Yesterday: Vineland Man Dies After Being Taken Into Police Custody
“The man, identified as Phillip White, was arrested at a home on the 100 block of Grape Street in Vineland, New Jersey around 11 a.m. Tuesday. He died shortly after while in custody.”
It doesn’t matter what they tried to arrest him for; they assassinated him. Serve and protect, indeed. As his aunt, Valerie White lamented:
“Why, what he was doing, I don’t know,” she said. “I’m trying to get answers and closure now. He lived a street life but he was a human being. Bottom line.”
From those awesome women in Oakland, another great civil action tomorrow, and excellent example of agorism, and great pushback against gentrification:
And as they say in Chitown:
And from graffiti artist Banksy, some philosophical understanding of neo-fuedal capitalism (and not):
And a bit of #BlackLivesMatter humor: