Doesn’t #LivesMatter really mean #EndThePoliceState?
Sadly, the choice of protest slogans in the recent fight against police brutality has created tremendous infighting among activists who all want to see an end to the violence. There has been a significant debate between the #blacklivesmatter and #alllivesmatter hashtags, with the former accusing the latter of attempting to sweep the issue of racism under the rug. However, while racism is a very serious problem in the US, and around the world, focusing solely on the issue of race in regards to police brutality will not lead to the type of solutions that are needed to actually solve the problem.
With the conversation centering on race specifically, the establishment is able to propose reforms to address that specific issue without being forced to overhaul the entire institution of policing. This is a problem because the solutions proposed for such an issue will be things like “more police training, or more black and latino police officers”, and as we have seen with the case of Freddie Gray and many others, African-American police officers have no problem kidnapping, assaulting and killing people of any color if they are ordered to do so.
This is why it is important to focus on the institution of police itself, as well as the prison industrial complex, the war on drugs, and the many systematic weapons that the state uses against people of all races. This is not to say that police do not disproportionately target African-Americans; because they certainly do.
It has been on record that the KKK has made a concentrated effort to infiltrate police departments across the country. Also, it is true that African-American communities are over-policed to an extent that is not seen in most white communities. Racism is a concern and a very serious one at that. To support the idea that #alllivesmatter is not taking away from the fight against racial injustice is simply looking at the issue a bit deeper by attempting to strike at the root of the problem, instead of just attacking the symptoms.
The government is very good at redirecting people’s anger into meaningless “reforms” of the system, when in reality, the system needs to be entirely abolished and overhauled, anything less is selling ourselves short and will not achieve freedom for anyone, of any race.
If the drug war continues, young black men and women will continue to be kidnapped, assaulted and killed by police, regardless of whether or not those police are racist, or are the same color as the people that they are attacking. This is why it is extremely important to be careful about where the focal point of our discussion lies, and which solutions we are being directed towards.
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John Vibes is an author, researcher and investigative journalist who takes a special interest in the counter culture and the drug war. In addition to his writing and activist work he organizes a number of large events including the Free Your Mind Conference, which features top caliber speakers and whistle-blowers from all over the world. You can contact him and stay connected to his work at his Facebook page. You can find his 65 chapter Book entitled “Alchemy of the Timeless Renaissance” at bookpatch.com.
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