What does it take to put an end to this police crime wave, this wave of police terrorism?
That is the question we must ask after the latest (known) outrage – the police murder of 40-year-old Terence Crutcher, who was returning home from the criminal activity of attending a music appreciation class when his car broke down. The video clearly shows that he did nothing that could be even remotely interpreted as being threatening. Yet the cops’ attitude is clear from the start, when one of them is heard to say, “that looks like a bad dude, too. Probably on something.” Why? Simply because Crutcher is guilty of being a black man living in the USA.
Police Crime Wave
The crime wave of the police is showing no signs of abating. On the contrary, after all the freeways blocked, all the other protests we still have 837 people killed by cops in the US this year as of Sept. 30. Why?
Cops “Right About Everything”
Interim Chicago police chief Eddie Johnson gave a glimpse of what’s happening when he took office back in March of this year. “The officers right now are confused a little bit. They’re hurt. They went from being right about everything to now being under enormous scrutiny, and not just in Chicago, that’s across the country,” he said.
“They went from being right about everything” to being under scrutiny. That says a lot. Until recently, with all the “law and order” politics, the police were held up as being super-heroes, incapable of doing wrong, defenders of all the “law abiding” (white, middle class) people in the country. Nothing they did would even bring scrutiny, never mind criticism. It’s not only that they thought they were above the law; they were above the law. And they still are. (Why, for example, has the murderer of Crutcher, Officer Betty Shelby, not been arrested? There certainly is enough evidence to suspect she’s guilty of murder.)
A Few Rotten Apples?
All the corporate controlled politicians, even the most liberal, try to maintain this reverence for the police. That includes Bernie Sanders, who has commented “The vast majority of police officers in this country are honest…” and bragged that as mayor of Burlington VT he “worked very closely and well with police… (who are) honest, hard-working people.” The image Sanders and other left liberals portray is that the problem is simply one or two “rotten apples”.
This is an outright lie. Even in the most mundane of cases, the police lie and fabricate, as for example in the case of a young man who had his cell phone snatched by the cops because he was (legally) videoing them. Having forgotten to turn off the phone, they can then be heard talking among themselves, trying to figure out how to fabricate charges against him. Just as with the Tulsa cops, these are ordinary, every-day cops — the “honest, hard-working” ones that Sanders and other liberals talk about.
Build a Workers’ Party!
Mass mobilizations, including mass civil disobedience, are necessary, but clearly it’s not enough. Not when the entire corporate-controlled political system from liberal to ultra conservative is covering up for the cops. What’s needed is for this movement to protest against the cops to start to link up with the protests against environmental destruction (like in North Dakota), and other issues affecting working class people. This can only be done through the organizing of a political party – a workers’ political party.
The Painters Union (IUPAT) Local 10 has taken a small first step in calling for exactly this. When we start to make this a reality, then we will be in a position to start to really fight back against this wave of terrorism in blue.
Update: We see that the cop who assassinated Crutcher has been arrested. That is only because of the video (vs. testimony of other witnesses – i.e. the other cops) and the public pressure. She should have been arrested on the spot!
Second: If you agree that the unifying of working class people to fight all the attacks of capitalism – racism, environmental, economic, etc. – is needed, please go here and sign the petition in support of this resolution.