Having said that, I'm sure these types of post create a lot of work for you. I appreciate the upkeep and please keep up the good work!
That's maybe the good place to ask:
What are other places (maybe places more open to political discussions) the HN crowd would recommend for "intelligent discussions"? Twitter and Reddit are an awful mess at the moment.
It seems like the really good discussion places wouldn't have to carry this caveat. It's too bad those are even harder to find.
Ideally, yes, but if the political views you are hoping to find are ones that overtly limit any dissent or respect for any other view (extreme absolute authoritarianism for example) then the views themselves subvert the ability to have meaningful discourse about them.
Wonkery can be debated; humanity can't.
This post has been killed and unkilled, downweighted by flagging and then unweighted by mods, then after a front page surge now downweighted because it has more comments than points.
Those unwritten rules that govern social behavior can induce real internal change too. People's attitudes and beliefs are shaped by what they perceive to be customary and deviant in their culture.
Nothing interests everybody. If one story doesn't interest you, there are plenty of others to read here, and if you run out, the 'past' link in the top bar will take you to many threads you missed. Some of those will surely be interesting.
> I was there last night and it's such a cool pseudo utopian place
> The media coverage of it is WILD
> People on the internet are convinced it's protected by armed guards and people are dying of hunger and instead its...like a music festival campground
> There are speakers, musicians, art walls. I took a group pic for a bunch of black guys last night and they were so proud of what was built because they felt like they fought for it, which in a sense, they did.
I live 7 blocks away from "the zone" and can confirm, I have never in my life seen anything alike in this regard. The scale of the misinformation being spread in social networks and news media reached a level I couldn't believe possible before. Seriously, it's beyond absurd.
If anyone is interested, I have been taking some pictures of the ongoing protests (including a few of the zone): https://www.flickr.com/photos/peramides
I've not before seen a summer street festival where armed militias wearing bulletproof vests patrol the streets.
The people with masks and weapons on the street report to no-one we know, it's either a loose anarchic group or some sort or they report to a warlord. Can you petition the warlord? Occupy their office? Vote them out? This is a regression to the medieval model of governance.
It's all fun and games when no one really disagrees about anything important, but things change for the worse when disagreements start happening. This is how communes fall - either they fail to disagree constructively or they get subjugated by a dictator who forces an agreement.
This is why we tolerate the police for a few hundred years now - on occasion they cause violence that's predictable and can be influenced. The alternative is the violence we cannot influence and that spiral out of control when the going gets tough.
The point of these protests is that the violence is not occasional. It is endemic, and attempts to stop it stretch back centuries. It has persisted across the country, under both progressive and conservative politicians, despite many, many attempts to eliminate it.
If the violent system we have has successfully resisted change and accountability for hundreds of years, how is this a regression?
I feel like these statements need to be qualified to be useful.
Has the level of police violence over the years gotten worse, gotten better, or stayed roughly the same?
How does the overall levels of violence compare to places without an organized police force?
I understand why some people’s initial instinct is to believe this is a new problem, but groups have been desperately trying to get people’s attention about police violence for decades.
Rodney King was nearly 30 years ago. And people were crying for help long before that.
I knew there was a problem before, but seeing things unfold the last week made it clear, this is a much more widespread and a significantly deeper issue than most people realized.
Even with all of that said, I think we would be silly to imply that abuse has to happen for a significant amount of time before it’s justifiable for someone to demand it stop.
If the US police have this problem and other (wealthy democratic) countries don't – or even if comparable countries have the problem too, just not quite as bad as the US has it – what makes US police different?
Racism and racial inequality. Yes, that's very real, but don't think for a moment other countries don't have that problem too – they do. But yes, historically speaking, the US was very much an outlier of extreme racism – few other countries ever had anything comparable to "Jim Crow laws", and the most obvious comparators (apartheid in South Africa and the Nuremberg Laws in Nazi Germany) are not what the US really wants to be compared to. On the other hand, my personal impression is that contemporary Americans are (on average) actually much more highly committed to anti-racism than people in most other countries are.
Could there be other relevant factors causing problems unique to US police? I think, everyone is (quite rightly) focused on the racial inequality issue, but could there be other causes which might be less deeply entrenched and quicker to fix? Easy short-term wins?
(My thought: US has more independent law enforcement agencies than any other country on earth – force all the smaller ones to merge – bigger police forces tend to have a more professional culture, and a smaller number of big police forces is easier for the media/NGOs/etc to hold to account than a larger number of small ones.)
If you really want to feel sick read-up on the Highway of Tears and the systematic brutalization of indigenous women by Canadian society.
On that topic, how do US law enforcement treat Native Americans? In the present debate there seems to be very little attention to that question.
And I’m not suggesting the US should have one police force for whole country, or that EU should take over policing for its member states. In a federal system like the US, local policing is a state government responsibility. So I wouldn’t advocate going any further than merging local police into state police. And in bigger states, like California and Texas, even that is probably going too far-but one could at least merge city police forces into the county level.
The only violence I’ve seen from police that doesn’t seem like an anomaly is violence that protestors incited by starting a conflict with the police.
So, empirically, it seems like the violence is occasional except when you go asking for it and the protestors just have a problem with authority and society at large.
It’s why their complaints are big on individual sob stories but lacking statistics to back them up.
For whom and per...what? Encounter? Mile traveled with them?
> The only violence I’ve seen from police that doesn’t seem like an anomaly is violence that protestors incited by starting a conflict with the police.
That suggests to me that either your perception of provocation or of anomaly is skewed (or that “anomaly” is used in the software sense of “behavior out of line with spec” rather than the more general sense of “behavior out of line with what is normal”.)
> So, empirically,
You just recounted what is, by the terms used, your subjective impression, and termed your conclusion built on that (which go far beyond what is justified even if that impression was undisputed fact) “empirical”.
That’s...not what that word means.
Per arrest for violent crime (where most of the deaths occur), blacks are safer than whites.
I’ve been reviewing the footage from Seattle — and protestors started every instance of violence by first getting forceful with the cops.
Show me any evidence that there’s an endemic problem of violence — because nothing I can find in either statistics about harm or footage from protests suggests there is.
That’s an empiric conclusion: studying the statistics about how often police harm people and comparing them to other sources of risk — which show they’re relatively minor.
That's funny, because the majority of the clips I've seen have unprovoked or inappropriate responses from the police. Seattle alone  has had numerous incidents. It's trivially easy to see this, to the point that one would have to ignore many incidents to say "every instance" was started by protestors.
I believe that you are not arguing in good faith.
The first one is what we should want to happen — a misplaced knee was moved by a colleague. There’s no context to decide if police inappropriately started an altercation. There’s no extended period of a knee on someone’s neck.
The second is police responding to someone on the ground fighting them and physically resisting arrest.
The third is pepper spraying a crowd that was refusing to move and let the police form a line, after someone lunged at the police.
The fourth is completely context free, and while unfortunate that a child was there, it doesn’t give us context to judge.
Your source also is using selective clips, that remove context to focus on emotionally triggering scenes.
Blindly chanting "there's no context" to every single video is problematic at best; it's a dog-whistle for cop apologists at worst.
We have videos of cops shooting projectiles at people on their own private property; cops approaching people who are walking away and just shoving them or beating them up for no reason; cops driving vehicles (or horses) into crowds or towards pedestrians; et cetera. One needs to be adamantly ignorant in order to believe that every single instance has been instigated by protestors.
Saying "protestors started every instance of violence" and now going "wait, we need the context to judge these videos" makes me believe you have zero intent of approaching this from a viewpoint other than one that vilifies protestors and glorifies cops.
Seems the problem is approximately 90 times worse (!) than the UK for example. The UK is somewhat less diverse, but what has a diverse population got to do with it? That might explain some of the killing, but it doesn't justify it.
> Can you tell me what it is that makes these people dangerous and scary, but the similarly armed protestors who showed up at government buildings a month ago — or, frankly, the police — fine?
and explaining why replacing police with warlords is not progress.
Are some classes of people unable to influence the system? I readily agree with that. Are we making our society better by replacing police with warlords or anarchists? I argue not.
On the contrary, I think if a government claims to be democratic, then they are accountable for aligning their policies and outcomes with what the public wants. A democratic government should be actually accountable to the public.
What would you rather see?
There were also rumours of proud boys and other far-right groups attacking CHAZ. It's understandable that people would be more comfortable with vocally anti-fascist gun clubs defending them than the police, who often treat the far-right as friends.
Personally, I'm not afraid of the police, of protesters, of armed militias, etc. I'm afraid of people with guns. Why does anyone carry a gun, unless they intend to use it, once some set of conditions obtain? I don't want to be around people like that, and I really don't want to live in places where they go around on public streets like this.
In other words:
> An unarmed people are slaves or are subject to slavery at any given moment.
> -- Huey P Newton
If given the option to run away, you should absolutely do so -- but that shouldn't stop you from learning self-defense in case the 'flight' option isn't available.
We shouldn't have guns, but I don't think that we should disarm ourselves unless everyone else agrees to disarm themselves as well.
Suppose the world agrees to dismantle its nuclear arsenal but a single nation, the great atomic nation of Nuclearia, decides that it will keep its weapons and it will destroy the world unless every other nation obeys its rule. And assume Nuclearia has magickal weapons that do not affect Nuclearia lands, or its citizens. The world refuses to obey and Nuclearia unleashes the nuclear holocaust.
Now what? What did Nuclearia achieve by destroying the rest of the world with nuclear weapons? What will Nuclearia do in a world of its own? Note that the rest of the world is now a radioactive waste where nothing lives and nothing grows. Other nations' lands cannot be annexed and used for farming, because there is no fertile soil left anywhere. While some intrepid souls no doubt long to visit the great glass fields of New York, spending any time outside Nuclearia is deadly and most of the world is a depressing burned desert so travel is pointless and tourism is a joke. International commerce of course is out of the question because there is no other nation than Nuclearia. Any resources, such as metals, gases, fossil fuels etc are limited to what Nuclearia has in its own territory. Any scientific progress is limited to what Nuclearian scientists can achieve on their own, without any input from the outside, given that there is nothing on the outside.
How does destroying everyone else increased Nuclearia's chances of survival?
How do you protect yourself by destroying everyone else?
You don't glass everybody immediately. Nuclearia basically does a protection racket. Do what we want, or we progressively make an example of you. Each "round" is 1) issue demand 2) if no compliance, respond with N units of force 3) N++ 4) repeat until results. Rebels get the Alderaan treatment. Rule by fear. Either every country decides to let themselves get scorched to prevent Nuclearia taking resources as a last FU, bend the knee, or re-arm. But one well-placed rebel ICBM ought to dissuade Nuclearia from their racket.
Having some subpopulation (police or even military) with guns but not the populace is a similar power dynamic. It doesn't take many "rebels" to make the hegemony think twice about a takeover. But a complete monopoly on power means a "clean sweep" military coup with minimal bloodshed is possible. My finding of the world is that most people just want to live their life and do their thing. So in such a takeover, I believe most people would just fold. But a small rebel % can turn that bloodless takeover into an indefinite boondoggle.
So there's 3 agents:
1. Government. Trustworthy, until it isnt.
2. "Union" - Trusts govt. Ok with "gun grabbing" because civians with guns make them feel safe.
3. "Rebels". doesn't trust government. Ok with guns - armed society is polite society.
So it's a very unstable dynamic. It's stable at the extreme ends - everybody has guns, or only government has guns - but the transitions are high activation energy states.
Yes, I carry a gun because I intend to use it. In self-defense, if ever necessary.
What is wrong with wanting to protect my own life?
Oh you mean like police officers?
For other people it feels dangerous and scary because rhetoric about "abandoned by the authorities" and "siezed by anarchists" alongside an unofficial militia sounds like the state's monopoly on violence being usurped.
> People on the internet are convinced it's protected by armed guards
Contrast this to armed anarchists, anti-fascists, whatever, occupying city blocks as part of an organization that's connected to street violence and looting. The CHAZ guard, hasn't been trained and vetted and you don't know what his goals are and you haven't experienced it before.
As others have noted, it's a bit of a false premise to ask "Why are we scared of these people but not those other recent protests?" Because, of course, you assume people weren't scared by the other protests, which is not necessarily the case. Imagine someone who worked in one of the government buildings that the end-lockdown people occupied, there are now a hundred guys with masks and rifles occupying the building - is that imaginary worker scared or disturbed, and can you see why "But you aren't scared of the armed courthouse guards" isn't exactly equivalent?
Also I don’t know how are festivals in the US, but I’ve never seen armed cops at one, and would be really uncomfortable if there would be some.
I agree. But most people who have been claiming that "CHAZ is being ruled by warlords" (or some similar permutation) are the same people who were totally fine with armed anti–lockdown protests at government buildings a month or so ago. They're the same people who have sided with the police as they attack peaceful protestors in the name of "law and order".
My presumption was that the OP basically shares these views. So I'm simply trying to understand why this one guise of "person with a weapon" is especially scary but others are not.
I didn't see where this person up thread was fine with the anti-lockdown armed protesters or claimed to side with the police attacking peaceful protesters. Can't those things be wrong and having local warlords in charge also be wrong?
Sorry. I should have stated that this is for liability issues more than any other reason, not out of any "goodness of the heart". Though, given the opportunity, most people will do the good thing rather than the out right psychotic thing, clinical testing has shown.
Your experience of music festivals and heavily armed people going hand in hand is not universal.
You could buy the pieces and build it yourself, but you'd need some tooling.
I was being a being a bit sarcastic about his gear being brand new and forgot about the relatively new laws as part of my joke. :)
And who knows, they could have bought the parts and assembled it, if they can find things in stock somewhere.
M&P 15 is a complete knockoff of US military M4/M4A1 carbine, except barrel is longer and has no full auto function to comply with regulations.
Way too boring configuration to build from parts or build out of an 80% blank, and also probably not an airsoft.
Disclaimer: I’m an airsofter outside US at best in the context
It's kind of an ill-defined term, and doesn't really mean that it was purchased whole. It could easily be a stripped lower + lpk + complete upper, or complete lower + complete upper. Either of those sidesteps the 10 day waiting period, and it's about the same price - you can get a lower+lpk with buffer tube and halfway-decent buttstock for something like $120, or you can buy a complete lower for about that same price.
Assuming you just buy a stripped lower and not an 80% lower, assembling requires minimal tooling - a couple roll pin punches, a hammer, some pliers, a hex wrench, and maybe another wrench. A vise grip makes it easier but isn't strictly speaking required. Takes like an hour or two even if you have no idea wtf you're doing.
That said, I agree it's probably more likely they bought it whole, or bought a lower+upper and just slapped it together (which takes 5 seconds and zero tools).
In big European cities it’s pretty normal to see cops wearing body armor and carrying rifles around such events.
Especially the "free spech"-debates and their "diversity" of opinion. I just imagine how it must feel living there for years and not being 100%-OK with your neighbourhood becoming a "summer street fair".
It's right by where the Capitol Hill block party is run, legally and with the city's blessing, every year. That's a major corporate event with _significantly_ more powerful sound systems.
I was referring to the "block party" feeling of European "autonomous zones", i.e. in variaous European cities like Hamburg, Berlin, Kopenhagen, Barcelona, …, where Antifa/Anarchists/Far-Left "took over" an area/building, with city-officials telling the police to back-off, which created "never ending block-parties".
Growing up there, seeing that it was always the same no matter which city or country, was the best vaccine against their school of thought.
"And get this—the police are still in the neighborhood, doing routine police stuff. Last night I watched two cops deal with a person who had passed out on Broadway. They prodded her and asked “you wanna go to detox?” until medical professionals arrived. (Obviously, we should be funding social workers to take care of these kinds of problems instead of cops!)"
Doesn’t sound very utopian
This is not the first time Chief Best and the SPD made things up during these events, and in fact they have a long history of misbehavior:
Note that in your video Best is not being too explicit on where exactly those crime reports happened, she just says "in the area" while talking about their response times (CHAZ is a relatively important intersection of Capitol Hill and it is causing some traffic). Note also that this video was filmed in the East Precinct itself (i.e. inside CHAZ).
After everything that happened over the last few weeks it is now my belief that they are being dishonest, which is why two days ago I submitted my first FOIA request to learn more about some events connected to the Seattle Police Department.
By the way, I don't think many people here in Seattle believes this is an "utopia" nor anything close to that, in fact I think that CHAZ may be moving away attention from BLM.
Here, a multi-racial family was menaced by residents of Forks, WA. Residents actually cut down trees to block the road.
Here, a police offier's relative drove into the protests, shot a protestor, and ran to the police station.
While these instances are not widespread, they are incredibly troubling.
The Seattle Times : This is a rather long mega thread kind of post, but if you do a ‘Find’ for the headline, it’ll take you there:
Headline to search: Police walk back report that Capitol Hill protesters extorted businesses
For the too lazy to click, here are some quotes:
> That has not happened affirmatively,” Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best in a news conference Thursday afternoon, adding that the police department had based earlier claims on anecdotal reports, including in the news and on social media. “We haven’t had any formal reports of this occurring.”
> In a news conference Wednesday, Assistant Seattle
Police Chief Deanna Nollette said police have heard from Capitol Hill community members that some protesters have asked business owners to pay a fee to operate in a roughly six-block area around the precinct. Best repeated the claim in a video address to officers Thursday morning.”
> The police narrative rang false to many in the Capitol Hill business community. Restaurant owners said they hadn’t heard any reports of extortion in the Autonomous Zone. On the contrary: Sales are strong and the increase in walk-up business is cutting down on delivery costs.
> “This protest has not hurt us at all,” said Bok a Bok Chicken co-owner Brian O’Connor...
> ” Apart from those sources, Christina Arrington, who heads the Capitol Hill branch of the Greater Seattle Business Association, said she has had “no other indications that this is taking place.” The GSBA “found no evidence of this occurring,” the group tweeted, based on conversations with area business.”
The Greater Seattle Business Association tweeted :
> ” GSBA and Capitol Hill Business Alliance have also reached out to businesses in the area, and we have found no evidence of this occurring.”
Relevant Seattle area Reddit threads , at least one of which points out how the sinclair owned stations are still running with proven untruths. (For those who don’t remember, Sinclair is company who owns TV and newspapers all over the country and were forcing newscasters to read the same scripted pro-trump news in stations across the country.)
The reports of BLM leader avoiding answering any public questions about where funds are going  was already concerning. Having stories on top of it that some of these funds may also be coerced from non-protestors would be a bad look and I'm happy that isn't the case so far (assuming business owners aren't just staying quiet as the physical threats of speaking out still exists as long as the occupation continues).
I really hope focus goes back on positive police reform and avoids these internal distractions like the merits of a burning-man style street parties and silly attempts at building temporary urban gardens or bringing in dairy cows which take real care/time/investment vs focusing on tangible action and strong pressure towards police reform.
Unlike occupy this (the wider movement, not so much CHAZ) has the potential to result in real wins for once and already has a few. This deserves far more support from the supposedly libertarian-leaning right who despise many of these same police policies.
The vegan hippie utopia stuffs seems to be mostly a distraction from that and easy fodder for dismissal by the mainstream media.
 from BLM AMA on Reddit: https://preview.redd.it/3ebhf4rrei451.jpg?width=750&auto=web...
The impression I'm getting from this and other events from the past weeks is that the police would like us to believe that without them, society turns to chaos, but in practice, US police turns out to be a major source of chaos, and without them things often turn much more peaceful.
I'm not saying there should be no police at all, but that police should work with the community, instead of trying to dominate it.
The police benefit from chaos during these protests, I'm sure the temptation to foster chaos and destruction is quite high for them right now. It puts the protesters in a bad light and reinforces the idea that police are needed.
There are multiple cases where police have been observed contributing to the chaos or just idling around while it happened nearby. Definitely not universal, but some departments are doing the opposite of their job.
Any time the police are pushed to the point where they use force on the protestors, mass media is then awash with out of context clips of the event, claiming police brutality, drumming up more support for the protestors and their cause. The more chaos, the better it is for the protester's message.
There's lots of peaceful protests every year that don't end in the police using force. In fact, the vast majority of them, before this. These protestors benefit politically if the police use force. So what's the difference here, why do these "protests" result in use of force? It's blatantly obvious to me ..
I don't see how your point is relevant here.
Protestors aren't paid with tax dollars.
Cops are getting paid massive amounts of overtime to prevent looting and damage during this crisis and instead they are contributing to it.
So the simplest answer is actually: protesters benefit from police using force. (because they'll get more protesters, more media coverage etc.)
I'm struggling to see the equivalency here. In one case you have cops, getting paid to protect people and property and ignoring that responsibility (or actually participating in mayhem) at no cost to themselves. Lots of incentive to act poorly, little personal consequence.
On the other hand you have protestors who might collectively benefit from police using force at the cost of taking a club to the head or pepper spray to the face.
Not seeing how the two are comparable.
My impression is also that many cases of police abuse in the US happen in situations where most of the police officers policing a community are not themselves members of that community, but outsiders looking down on that community.
The institutions that are most effective at "fostering a sense of community" are voluntary ones like churches and cultural centres, not coercive ones like police. Social scientists have known for a long time about the critical importance of this sort of civic and community engagement, but it is often misunderstood and considered irrelevant at a political level, especially by more liberal or radical sorts of politics which often advocate for a mixture of extreme social individualism and a radical redefinition of social groups-- generally emphasizing a simplistic view of power relations over a broader sense of community.
Additionally, they advocate mixing together people who have little in common, to obtain diversity. That's not conducive to sense of community either, as Robert Putnam's research showed.
 - https://www.puttingourdifferencestowork.com/pdf/j.1467-9477....
My guess is the mayor and/or the forces that pull her strings.
I don't think that's remotely clear. No one in SPD's chain of command feels that way and they definitely don't take orders from outsiders.
> My guess is the mayor and/or the forces that pull her strings.
Certainly Durkan doesn't feel that SPD are a "malign force" — she's a former prosecutor and has only been supportive of SPD. Including and especially during the last few weeks. She also doesn't have the authority to direct SPD, aside from appointing a police chief. So she has some sway over Chief Best, but she and Best are buddy-buddy. And Best has consistently claimed she (Best) did not order the withdrawal.
My best guess is it was a political / tactical retreat by a lower-level leader to end the violence and save face. That or union action by East Precinct officers — they just didn't want to be there anymore.
Besides, one of the long list of complaints is that police are often useless or worse at dealing with rapes; Minneapolis PD had a massive backlog of untested rape kits.
(edit: correctly gendered the police chief, hadn't bothered looking at the tweet)
- "Incendiary devices" being thrown at officers: it was a candle - as can be seen by the sticker visible in SPD's own tweets
- Businesses being 'extorted': appears SPD leadership got a false report of this from a local alt-right personality and spread it in their press briefing.
- People checking IDs for entry: streamers have been trying to find anyone on the ground who can substantiate this claim and have been unable to. A small handful of people have been kicked out by being swarmed by a crowd and told to leave (and some more colorful language) without violence. These few instances have all either been counter-protestors or people trying to be senselessly destructive, as far as I've seen.
I'm skeptical of these most recent claims
This sounds like at least an implicit threat of imminent violence, without disputing the rest of your description.
I'm quite sure she's a woman.
And the media didn't post a non-biased account of what's going on?
It's become incredibly difficult to take what the PD says at face value anymore.
Now I'd say your statement about "extremely biased and partisan" is accurate, but the implication was that it's exclusively in a pro-protestor sense, and that's really not the case.
I say this as someone who lives on the political fringes and generally disagrees with both sides of the partisanship.
Look at how flagrantly the police lied to cover up what they did to Breonna Taylor, or Freddie Gray. This is their standard MO: Lie and cover-up.
If people are taking the SPC's word as truth because they have priors that cops are truthful, that's an invalid prior based on how much general lying recent events have demonstrated cops do.
If people are taking SPC's word as truth because they have no priors, that's bias to authority and people should probably employ more skepticism.
Do we have any evidence that the Seattle police chief is generally truthful?
Chief Best has made multiple false statements of fact just this week, so, no.
> The Seattle Police Department walked back its claim, widely repeated in the news media, that denizens of the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone are extorting businesses.
> "That has not happened affirmatively," Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best in a news conference Thursday afternoon, adding that the police department had based earlier claims on anecdotal reports, including in the news and on social media. "We haven't had any formal reports of this occurring."
> That contradicts earlier statements from the police.
My response, if you look, was to a post that posed the question:
> How, after all the events of the last two weeks, is anyone still willing to take a police-person’s word as truth?
That is not speaking of an individual, but of a group, and then asserting claims regarding all members of that group.
Of course technically that's a logical fallacy but in practice I don't think most people are used to questioning the truthfulness of official positions by the police.
In fact if we were to start questioning police truthfulness more, there'd be pretty big changes to how police testimony is treated in legal cases.
Police presence ergo more rape?
BTW - love the church picture (I think it’s the one in Spain?)
Yep. I live three blocks south of CHAZ and it's so overblown. Conservative family from the east-coast have told me they're very worried for me, and I check fox news and see images from "Seattle" of parking lots of cars on fire. Those images were from Minneapolis last month, not even from Seattle.
As another nearby commenter said, last week when the police were here gassing us, throwing loud bombs at protestors at 1am, and having 24/7 helicopters directly overhead, it was hard to sleep. We could feel the gas blocks away. Ever since the police vacated the precinct and "CHAZ" started, things have been so peaceful and safe in this community.
- It's called Antifastan
- Warlord Raz is prone to violent outbursts, and is an AirBnb Superhost.
- There are open carries with automatic rifles. They get the most respect.
- Laughing out loud at an attempt to create a vegetable garden. Didn't appear promising.
- Laughing harder at a cry for 'please send vegan meats and soy products, the homeless took all the food!'
My thinking is, the truth is much more clearly painted in this forum than on either side of the mainstream media. I do consider them the enemy of the people for dividing us, pitting us against each other, and creating an oppression of fear. So they can sell more clicks.
Sorry if that seems pedantic, but the media uses the understandably easy confusion between the two to misrepresent issues around gun rights a lot.
My point? Semi auto AR-15s are every bit as effective and deadly as their fully automatic military counterparts. Whether civilians should have such weapons is another discussion.
I'd strongly argue against this point. Most hunting rifles have 5 round mags (legal limit for hunting in a lot of places). They won't accept 30 round mags. They're also chambered in more powerful calibers which have much more recoil.
An active shooter with his dad's hunting rifle is much less dangerous than the same shooter with an AR-15 with 30 round mags.
Why not? Seems like as long as the magazine can protrude from the bottom, you can have any capacity magazine you want.
It’s not like WWII rifles had wooden furnitures as luxury items.
With a 30 round mag and a cyclic rate of 700 rounds per minute (AR-15 mods run 700-1000 RPM), you get a little over 2 seconds of trigger time. That assumes you don't experience a jam, which is very likely with an AR-15 variant modified for automatic fire, and because of the weight distribution and recoil deflection, you won't hit anything you aim at after the second round leaves the chamber. So, if they are packing fully auto AR-15 mods, I'd be wayyyyy less concerned than if they were using semi automatic.
In general, yes. To play devil's advocate though, accuracy/controllability is not really needed if your goal is just to spray as much lead as possible into a densely crowded area from, say, a hotel room above.
Such domestic terrorist events are extremely rare, but I would guess in these specific cases where the goal is to spray as many bullets per second as possible into a crowd, full auto + large magazine is going to kill more people than semi auto.
With a large magazine it would be a different story though, you are right about that. This is why I think that it's good to have fully auto by design weapons be illegal (think the SAW, or the M240), along with magazines above 30 rounds.
And the people who confuse the two often talk about banning semi-automatic firearms (which ends up being just about all of them).
But yea, legal fully automatic weapons are not cheap.
Clarification: to acquire legally. It is not nearly that expensive black market.
Sure, you can make an unreliable automatic from a semi-auto easily. But it's a far cry from a commercial/military product.
One could make  their own in 2020 illegally with the hand tools you find at an Ace Hardware Store.
 - http://www.thehomegunsmith.com/pdf/fast_bunny.pdf
The “mainstream media” has exactly one side: whatever generates the most money.
Thus: wall to wall coverage of a couple of peaceful blocks without police and almost no mention of the $500 Billion that their advertisers recently looted from the American public.
Makes it easy to see how different outlets are doing their best to earn those ad dollars with different strategies (horizontal rows) and to see how their strategies are evolving over time (columns).
It would be cool to see your timeline with a site like https://freespoke.com/?q=Capitol%20Hill%20Autonomous%20Zone&...
I am all for their cause, but I feel like the methodology of 'camping in a park' is not the right way to enact civic change at a policy level.
I'm sorry, I simply disagree as to the role of public space in a free society -- them occupying the park is the LEAST objectionable thing about this.
I thought the meetings with the mayor were excellent, but via this avenue, all they are doing is changing the park.
There's a whole city out there where cops still operate under the same laws they have for many years. Protesters should try and change _that_, imho.
That sounds like a phrase from a novelty D&D campaign or some form of parody. What an odd year it's been.
This seems like propaganda in its own right. With the exception of Fox and Sky, most news coverage I see on YouTube is neutral or positive:
Most mainstream coverage of protests in general seems to be totally biased in favor of the protestors and against the police. The only big channels that show anything going in the other direction are, again, Fox and Sky.
Not saying this is correct, but I thought it was an interesting analogy.
But explicitly the parent is saying that the taco joint is more popular than all of the burger joints _combined_. Which is not what I would have guessed.
'Cause despite what it looks like online, the US is about equally split between liberal and conservative.
Anyone who mocks Fox news and then turns around and watches cnn, msnbc, etc, is a fool.
From my peer group (around forty), rather than liberal vs. conservative breakdown, I'd say those who reluctantly subscribe to cable are sports fans.
I did say liberals tend to watch less cable because they tend to be younger, it doesn’t mean that liberals in general have a propensity for cutting the cord.
fox's highest rated show is 4.8 million viewers.
ABC and NBC each get 10 million viewers for nightly news, cbs gets 6 million viewers. CNN and MSNBC have lower ratings, but there are a alot of mainstream-to-liberal sources of news to choose from. Liberals tend to like John Oliver and the Daily Show over fox news.
And the 11 O'clock local news still tends to get a lot of views, I think more than all of those others put together.
I am honestly stunned. I really expected Fox News to be as much of a dumpster fire as CNN or MSNBC. Certainly their video coverage, every time I have walked in front of a TV playing them, has been horrible. And I could swear that maybe six or seven months ago I walked by someone with a browser open to the Fox News site, and it was just execrable.
Maybe they are trying to turn over a new leaf?
That said, I still dream of truly fair news channel. Not opinion masquerading as news: actual, trying-to-be-objective news.
- Humans will bring their implicit biases to any reporting they do; I feel like it's better for the reader to make implicit biases explicit, and call out where the writer feels uncomfortable.
- If you try to cut humans out of the loop and replace them with algorithms, you're creating two problems: algorithms will have implicit biases from their creators, and there will be attempts to game and dupe the algorithms.
The problem in the US is that news outlets are expected to be biased and so they take full advantage of that to make their news more entertaining.
These news channels are driven by add revenue. And divisive, incendiary reporting is the best way to get people to keep watching.
Apart from that, you are perhaps asking for data devoid of biased analysis. You can keep up with current events like this on your own. There is plenty of public data on anything that you can analyze yourself and draw your own conclusions. Instead of reading business news, read SEC filings. Instead of reading about coronavirus, graph the raw data and make your own models. Skip the sensationalist science and health articles, and go right for the peer reviewed article. Open that layer on GIS yourself. Ignore medium blogs and read the actual documentation. Become your own data scientist.
This all takes a lot of mental effort and time, which few people have, so most people actually prefer to read summary articles from biased sources that reinforce their existing world view.
"Black Lives Matter protestors say Seattle's autonomous zone has hijacked message"
This seems like a straightforward and believable article. There's infighting at the Zone because a bunch of anarchists have diverted from the core message about police brutality targeting blacks and other minorities, and now the BLM camp is pissed off. Right?
But wait, even though the title unambiguously states that BLM protestors are blaming the autonomous zone for hijacking the core BLM message, the article instead explains that the quote about "hijacking the message" actually comes from a woman who is speaking on behalf of the African American Community Advisory Council, and she's the one being booed and heckled by protestors.
So what's the African American Community Advisory Council? Probably some BLM-related thing, right? After all, if the title of the article states that "Black Lives Matter protestors" are accusing the CHAZ of "hijacking the message" while the actual quote came out of the mouth of someone from the African American Community Advisory Council, then surely Black Lives Matter == African American Community Advisory Council.
I mean sure, technically they must be two separate things because they have two separate names, but surely they're closely connected. Just to be positive, let's find out. Type that name into a search engine and click on the first result:
Wait, the African American Community Advisory Council is actually a department of the Seattle city government. And they "work collaboratively with the police."
So Fox News saw a story about a city government employee scolding protestors. This employee works in a department that is closely aligned with the police and sides with the police, but because the department has a name that evokes blackness, that was enough leeway for them to write a false headline that intentionally confuses the reader into thinking that this is a story about internal conflict and infighting among the protestors.
Sure enough, the bovine reader comments at the bottom of the page confirm the success of this tactic:
"Even the idiots can't agree. What will they do now??"
"I guess nobody told BLM that you can't negotiate with terrorists."
"Leftists arguing over whose riot it is???"
"Eating their own"
Fox News knows that they can trust Fox News readers to glance at the headline, skip the article, feel confirmation of their biases and preconceptions, and tuck another false anecdote in their pocket to use as ammunition in case they get in an argument with a family member, coworker, or person online.
Here's a reminder that we should never be passive consumers of of a biased narrative!
Agreed, though: 'Clueless in Seattle' has no place on a news site.
It's pretty obvious that they do not want to go into detail on anything that would paint the actions of the past two weeks in any negative light. There's no positive way to spin losing control of multiple city blocks, including a police station.
Bias does not have to be a slant in an articles content or writing style, though that happens as well, e.g. including phrases like "mostly peaceful protests" in articles describing looting. It can also be as simple as not reporting things you do not want to publicize.
It's not sustainable in any way and there wasn't exactly a democratic process by which the residents of Seattle agreed to having a section of their city turned into an autonomous zone. Though it could be an interesting experiment to do this somewhere, I think it'd have to go through a vote.
it is still a protest, right? this is why peaceful protest is so hard, because as soon as it stops being violent people find some way to dismiss it. when stuff is being set on fire, the argument is "why can't they protest peacefully", but when the protest is actually peaceful we get critiques like this one.
Why couldn't it be positive? I think it's fair to say that these are early days and there is a general lack of data about what's going on, but most of what I've seen has been pretty positive.
Here's a video I watched from inside: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=610393902995230
I think parent mostly meant mad max wasteland and utopian are both two extremes.
Since the police cleared out, everything has been much MUCH nicer around here.
Flash bangs? Those are for assaulting buildings, not crowd control.
Police have all these weapons, and they want to use them, instead of first trying more constructive, peaceful methods.
The theory is that tasers are a (edit: partial) replacement for firearms for cops. The reality is that approximately 0% of cops are willing to draw a taser if they suspect that someone else has a firearm; they go for their firearm too.
Instead tasers have replaced other methods of de-escalation and containment, which is very bad if you're not a cop. Combine this with cops being called out for people experiencing mental health crises, and this is a recipe for disaster.
On tear gas, CDC has https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/riotcontrol/factsheet.asp :
People exposed to riot control agents may experience some or all of the following symptoms
immediately after exposure:
* Eyes: excessive tearing, burning, blurred vision, redness
* Nose: runny nose, burning, swelling
* Mouth: burning, irritation, difficulty swallowing, drooling
* Lungs: chest tightness, coughing, choking sensation, noisy breathing (wheezing),
shortness of breath
* Skin: burns, rash
* Other: nausea and vomiting
Long-lasting exposure or exposure to a large dose of riot control agent, especially
in a closed setting, may cause severe effects such as the following:
* Glaucoma (a serious eye condition that can lead to blindness)
* Immediate death due to severe chemical burns to the throat and lungs
* Respiratory failure possibly resulting in death
Tear gas is not benign, it is nasty stuff that has already killed people. Some preliminary research points to it potentially damaging the lungs of people who are exposed to it for a long time, possibly permanently.
If anything's weird about the Seattle PD, it could be they remember the 1999 WTO protests and want to crush them this time. But overall they all seem to be around the same -- very low -- standard
Rubber coated bullets have explicit instructions to be aimed at shin height or below. This is because everything below the knees doesn't have large masses of non-muscular soft tissue, reducing the chances of permanent injury. These rounds are designed to hit the ground first, lose some velocity, and skip into crowds, causing pain but not debilitating injuries. I haven't seen a SINGLE video of police using them like this. It's absolutely insane.
If they choose to use these weapons and tactics, they are responsible for how they use them. In a situation where the officers are in danger of physical harm, they are fully within their rights to go against usage policies to protect themselves. But in the vast majority I've seen, these officers have been shooting at unarmed protesters, not rioting mobs. It's simply illegal, a violation of the Constitution, and a chargeable offense.
I took a class on active shooter scenarios where they focused on that "be careful how you train" aspect with the illustration that a police officer ( no idea where ) once responded to a call where an armed man pointed a pistol right at the cop close range. The cop quickly disarmed the man, but then returned the firearm to the man, whereupon the man shot him dead.
In drilling the technique he used to disarm the man, police would practice in pairs, taking turns disarming each other from the draw. This meant that two officers would stand facing each other, pistols in holsters. One officer would draw, the other would disarm, hold the weapon pointed at the first officer for a beat, then return it to the first officer in order to draw his or her own weapon.
Then when you start to hear about corrections departments sending officers for crowd control... the animal instincts and things these guys are trained for is so volatile.
I think that's an understandable point of view but, frankly, one of the key points of training (military experience only, but I know police do similar) is to force people to learn how to think and act correctly in high stress situations. If you're in direct engagement with someone trying to hurt you, you do let the training take over. But if you're just scared, or nervous, or some kind of emotional, the point of high stress training is to teach how to remain calm, controlled, and analyze the situation. Civilians may not get that, having not gone through it, but that really is the point.
> I took a class on active shooter scenarios where they focused on that "be careful how you train" aspect with the illustration that a police officer ( no idea where ) once responded to a call where an armed man pointed a pistol right at the cop close range. The cop quickly disarmed the man, but then returned the firearm to the man, whereupon the man shot him dead.
To me, this screams of a notional anecdote to reinforce the idea to train properly, not of an actual occurrence.
And if they thought brutal reprisals were a good plan to keep their jobs ... oh boy. They did not plan that out well. The level of sudden radicalization against the police has been breath taking.
The complaint from police, especially with tasers too, boils down to that this needs to be strong enough to stop someone on meth with hulk strength. Police already have much more effective tools for this: Horse cop and lasso.
The media already tried this tactic once and failed: with the release of the "Joker" film. Remember all the hysteria about angry white incels? It was as if the mainstream media WANTED a theater to become a bloodbath. But in a lot of the YT comment sections I read the atmosphere was "We're on to these scumbags, everybody just be chill, don't prove them correct."
I think that has conservatives (and probably neoliberals) pretty freaked, so they want to hit it like Waco, to snuff out the idea.
However, the image I cannot stop smiling at is an elongated figure with an FBI cap, glowing green and using a stick to poke at a small ball with the 4chan logo, with the speech bubble "C'mon, do domestic terrorism."
How much power does the right need before they're considered "in power"? They controlled both branches of congress and the presidency until 2018, and have a majority on the supreme court. Fox news is the most popular media platform, and have tremendous (but not full) control over the mainstream narrative.
This as "in control" as a single party gets in the US.
Aside from the LPFM repeater stations, largely used for religious broadcasting, I would say that the radio market has been completely captured by the left.
When it comes to the right, they have Fox for television networks and that's all.
That's true for the lower half of the FM dial (aka the public good section that naturally aligns with left leaning ideals), but not the top half or AM.
"[Fox News] has been celebrating a 44-month consecutive streak as the most-watched network on basic cable and a 218-month streak as the most-watched cable news network, averaging 3.5 million primetime viewers and 2 million total-day viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research."
For terrestrial broadcast television in the US, the pro-Trump Sinclair-owned stations possesses 294 stations for around 75% penetration of total US households.
Also, news-talk stations are right-wing with the exception of NPR and sports.
Therefore, one can conclude the right-controlled media is mainstream media.
A strict contrarian viewpoint is just as conformist as a strict mainstream opinion, it allows someone else to define your opinion.
So I don't think it's as fractal as you imagine. I think what you might be seeing are those with general principles rejecting the contrarian view because the contrarian view is counter to their principles.
Let's say I like chocolate. But the mainstream opinion is chocolate sucks. Currently, I'm a contrarian. I'm against the mainstream opinion. I get on certain boards and rail against how chocolate is disliked by the masses and how they're missing out. Then, the tide shifts and chocolate becomes popular. A portion of my compatriots who claimed to like chocolate, now say it sucks. Because that's the contrarian opinion now. And I say they're missing out because I still like chocolate. Because I like it for reasons other than mainstream opinion of it. So, while not changing my stance at all, I've gone from contrarian, to mainstream, to complaining about the contrarian stance.
Does the presence of overwhelmingly peaceful footage of average people going by their average days make Seattle at large an Utopia with no crime? Is that footage in itself sufficient evidence to abolish the police and the court system, because, look, there are 17,520,000 hours of peaceful footage before something terrible happens to someone?
It is incredibly difficult to build an accurate image of a large scale group of people judging by a few hours of direct experience. 1000 harder if through footage selected by people with their own agendas. Media coverage, especially audio-visual coverage, is wild because media coverage is simply an inappropriate way to depict such phenomena.
Every generation needs a Woodstock. Burning man is not real enough.
A massively failed capitalist project that leaves behind an enormous mess?
The ability for people to make a mess on occasion, for whatever reason, is an essential freedom to be cherished and fought for.
Every generation needs an act of rebellion. It's a sort of fundamental law of nature, as a right of passage in a way.
They also knew that crowd control was going to be a problem; instead of hiring police, they brought in people from a commune who were used to doing crowd control for large peaceful gatherings.
Also, that the Antifas are asking for protection money from businesses within the zone. Again, dubious.
But, if either of those things are happening, I'm pretty okay with putting an end to them, by whatever means necessary. Threatening Joe and Jane citizen with violence is not cool.
Of course, he doesn't exist, but, if he did, I'm taking a strong stance against him being taken down, by whatever means necessary. Threatening to serve dubious sundaes to kids is not cool.
The claims that these militias are extorting businesses doesn't come from "the right", it comes from claims by the local police chief.
Addressing the takeover of the area surrounding the Seattle Police Department’s abandoned East Precinct building, Chief Carmen Best said ... using air quotes, that police had heard reports of armed people “patrolling” the area, which she said was “very concerning.” “Especially because we don’t know who these people are,” she added. And she hinted that they may even be extorting local business owners and demanding local residents show identification.
Chief Carmen Best may be totally wrong or making that up. But knowing these sorts of things is part of her job, so to dismiss it would take something stronger than some mocking denial. Especially because this is exactly what always happens when police vacate an area. The result is not "no police", the result is that militias and mafias step in to do it themselves. But worse.
Chief Carmen Best may be totally wrong or making that up.
As it turns out she was, in fact, wrong or making it up.
I dunno. She 'walked back' the statement. Maybe people were making that up to try to get the cops to retake the area? It could have also been absolutely true. Having lived in that area, I wouldn't put it past them.
Honestly, it's impossible to know at this point.
What is possible to know is that she knew damned well that any statement like that would be repeated 10 times more than any later, retraction of those statements.
> Police chief Carmen Best walked back prior statements made by her own department, which have since circulated widely and attracted condemnation from conservative critics of the protesters.
Those same critics have almost certainly not retracted their comments based on her statements. She clearly understands how to effectively feed her biggest fans.
It's one dude, every single post about the militias shows this exact dude in these exact clothes. One dude is not a militia. There are a bunch of stories about this guy apparently he's guarding all the entrances and still has time to extort local businesses. No wonder he doesn't have time to change clothes, he's one busy dude.
> But knowing these sorts of things is part of her job
Knowing that she has a massive vested interest in demonstrating that police are needed in the zone, I take everything she says with a massive grain of salt.
On the contrary, if it comes from Seattle PD it's better to just assume it's not true.
I don't know you, nor do I know your views on capital punishment. That said, I suspect you don't intend to promote that these crimes justify summary executions.
Consider the realistic logical endpoint of the statement. It ultimately means that it's acceptable for the police to storm the space, guns blazing, shooting (and reasonable probability of killing) anyone who doesn't immediately surrender.
That's one of the most hilarious and absurd things I've ever heard. All of my antifa friends are the most wonderful, gentle nerds. They're gardeners, organizers, history buffs, parents, writers, table-top gamers. It's so bizarre (and shitty) that the public conception of "antifa" became twisted into this nonsensical cartoon of looters and pillagers (and mafiosi now, apparently).
However, as Antifa is decidedly Anti-Fascist and without the paramilitary aspect of the brownshirts, perhaps they would be more closely identified with the Rotfrontkämpferbund.
I have not noticed this. They seem like a hateful mob to me. Or worse. I'll be happy enough if the Feds just roll them up.
Seattle is a special snowflake because their PD is actively white supremacist and they regularly have out of town white supremacists harassing the local populace.
I'm happy their doing their thing when government fails so hard at its job.
Curious, since I can't trust news media to not sensationalize this:
What has been built, according to your friend? Have they set up infrastructure of some sort for housing people? Kitchens, latrines, etc?
I suspect they'll all just get bored at some point.
I think the real issue here is: the police want to show that without them, things turn to chaos. Instead, they show that with them, things turn to chaos. Meanwhile, the protesters want to show that without the police, things are peaceful, and they seem to be succeeding.
That's not a great story for people who believe in police brutality, of course.
And yes, if the entire police department believes that they need to use force to dominate the American people, they refuse to stop when ordered to by the civilian government, and resist change, then disbanding the police and starting over with a better organised police force might not be such a bad idea at all.
It's not easy, and it's important to quickly have some alternative to fall back on, but when it's the police itself that's part of the problem, something needs to be done about that.
People keep brining up Camden, but in that instance, didn't the State Troopers still maintain control of the area during the transition?
From a political perspective, "disbanding" will most likely mean just making existing cops re-apply for their current roles (like how TVA did mass layoffs and rehires in the 90s).
I'm still convinced actual disbanding, without a security force in the interim, will be straight up disastrous.
I don't know what state troopers in Minnesota or Washington are like, but having them step in during the transition while those cities rebuild healthier police forces, sounds like a reasonable idea.
Though I'm not convinced it will actually be disastrous to do without police, or with dramatically reduced police, for a short period.
This is an appalling misunderstanding of what really happened in Camden. Take a trip there, know what you'll find? Police cars, policemen and police stations. THEY STILL HAVE POLICE!
What they REALLY did was a police reboot, essentially fired everyone and rebuilt from the ground up. People who point to Camden to try and support their narrative are dangerously misinformed.
I don't know, it's like a massive catch-22. People are sick of police abuses, but society needs police to some extent. I agree with much of what the protests are about, but struggle with their solutions.
If you watch YouTube channels like Donut Operator where people do police breakdowns, a lot of people .. really do deserve to get shot. Body cameras also make it way easier to get rid of police who are psychos who shouldn't be on the force, and can help push back against police unions.
Body cams are great solutions, and we're already seeing departments firing people who turned them off in bad faith (mostly due to these protests). Maybe more money should be diverted to training and wages, and less to equipment and vehicles?
I think there were already a lot of positive changes, and this whole set of protests may give us more. By disbanding or defunding the police is an absolutely crazy idea, that I think the vast majority of Americans do not support.
I get it. I hated cops in my 20s. I hated speeding tickets and saw friends get busted for pot and minorities get pulled over a lot. But a lot of that changed via policy. Pot is less of an issue in many places, and legal in several states. As far as people calling the cops on people (one of my good friends, black, had a neighbour call the cops on him, while he was jogging in his own neighbourhood, where he was a home owner)... yes that's racism, but not from the police; from a person in his community. That said, I have seen neighbours pulled over and searched in Cincinnati and it seemed like it was totally because they were black in a cheap car. shrug
I no longer hate cops. I've seen some do really amazing things for people they didn't need to. Yes there are probably 8%~10% that are psychos and I think most officers wish they could get rid of those people from their ranks too, but hating police just for hating police is childish. All these people calling for disbanding feel like they're just children.
Shootings aren't the only abuse. When a cop shoots their weapon, there is a bunch of paperwork, body cameras get reviewed, lies have to be created to cover it up, etc etc.
Lesser forms of violence get little or no scrutiny. The officer who killed George Floyd didn't have didn't have any problem with sitting on his neck for nearly 10 minutes and his partner didn't see fit to stop him even though the 2 rookies with them and multiple witnesses tried (verbally) to get him to stop. It's pretty clear the Floyd arrest was not that unusual for this guy.
The other big problem is "Discretion". Cops are encouraged to pull people over for random things and what happens after people get pulled over varies greatly based on who you are. If you are black, a broken tail-light pull over can quickly turn into a vehicle search and escalate from there. This hasn't improved either.
> Yes there are probably 8%~10% that are psychos and I think most officers wish they could get rid of those people from their ranks too,
The problem with the "Bad Apple" theory you espouse is that in so many cases the other officers at the incident, the police department, and the union are perfectly willing to circle their wagons and cover up for the Bad Apples. Cops refusing to stop bad cops and lying to protect them is super common. It's become clear that so long as cops are policing cops, the bad apples will remain.
> but hating police just for hating police is childish. All these people calling for disbanding feel like they're just children.
I suspect the people who hate cops, hate them for a good reason. Likewise, I suspect the people who call for disbanding cops honestly feel like it's the best solution to a difficult problem. Yes, some cops do amazing things for people... but for a lot of people an encounter with the police is literally the most dangerous experience of their lives. In order to address this problem, you need to fix that last bit or we're going to see this problem over-and-over again.
The police in my town make more than I do. NYPD officers make way more than I do and get sweet benefits I will never enjoy. In return they act petulant and ignore their duties whenever someone forces them to apply less than brutal tactics to non-threatening people.
They need comprehensive retraining and removal of the problem cases.
I personally don't think it's even close to that high. We never see a denominator; how many millions of police interactions are happening that we just don't hear about because nothing went badly?
Are we just talking about the guys who actually murder people in custody, or do the ones who beat the crap out of them or rape them count also?
Also, do we count the cops who lie and cover up for the abusive cops as bad apples or are they just like neutral apples? If these complicit cops count as bad-apples, then we're talking something like 60-70% of the force.
And it's that last category is the one that concerns me because ultimately so long as the whole "Brothers in Blue"/ "Snitches get Stitches " attitude is pervasive in police culture, it's going to be impossible to root out the actual psychos. "Good cops" are willing to cover up for bad cops, the DA won't prosecute cops, judges take cops word at face value... so long as that exists, this problem exists.
CHAZ is multiple city blocks. I doubt it's comparable in terms of hygiene.
The coronavirus bit still isn’t good, but the city has learned for the hygiene bits.
but the fundamental nature of these people are live and let live. So i'm not surprised at all that the area is doing fine and is perfectly safe.
notice how they are peacefully escorting him from the area? its fine.
Which is fun for a while until people start dying or fighting like they always do and suddenly you need a group of people who spend their time dealing with it. Anarchic utopias do not stay utopic for all that long.
At least one counterexample to this is Exarcheia in Athens, which has been relatively unpoliced for the last 50 years.
I was there about a year ago and was struck by how both peaceful and lively it was. Nowhere in Athens felt nearly as alive.
I've been a few times, quite lovely, would recommend.
Exarcheia has a very long history of participation in the movement and a lot of anarchistic spaces but the organization is not at all as cohesive as portrayed here. Police presence has varied through the years. There is a police department very close to the heart of the region (the square) and 2 years you would have clashes between the police and anarchist groups ~bi-weekly. Due to the absence of police there is and was a problem of drug trafficking (something that a lot of comrades fight against). Now there is a way stronger police presence.
FC had a stronger system in place, because of circumstance, politics and culture. Regardless, police has swept through FC quite a few of times, on charges involving drugs as well. I have not been part of any organizational elements in FC, but my ignorance here should not be considered as a guide.
Nevertheless, my point here is that both communities do not have combative capabilities against the organized force of police.
If you'd like me to elaborate more on a specific subject regarding my experience, especially about Exercheia, please let me know.
If you want to learn about a real breakaway province, look up Transnistria:
I've only been to the border. I was staying with Peace Corps volunteers and they risked getting fired if they crossed the boarder (I was told there have been kidnapping situations, but not sure if that's true).
US embassy officials have gone, but they are required to turn around if asked for passports since the US doesn't recognize them as a State. Members of the Peace Corps told me the Russians have supported the region with troops which they've brought in via Ukraine with Moldovan escorts, so there's all types of corruption leading up to that. I was visiting around the time the head of state of Moldova was arrested for embezzling several billion euros.
Source on that? 75% of that link talks about:
- riots following police action
- attacks on police stations
- special policing tactics for that region
- evictions by the police
The Wikipedia page documents precisely what has happened each time the police have tried to establish a foothold in the neighborhood since the 1973 student uprising. They currently operate from patrols and bases outside of the neighborhood. Any effects they have on the neighborhood (like squat clearing) tend to be impermanent.
> locals and activists help with the cleaning and cooking and even take turns being a night watch after someone – reportedly far-right activists – set a squat on fire.
> “It’s hard to live in peace when teenagers come here just to get high or you need to run to your car because protesters are setting them on fire,” says Dioni Vougioukli, a journalist who has lived in the neighborhood for 10 years.
All animals start off equal, but some animals will eventually grow to be more equal than others.
It's a little hard to come up with historical examples because the utopia portion is often quite short and overshadowed by the negatives that follow. Generally, I would point to almost any historical 'revolution' as a warning that tearing down a system and rebuilding it from scratch does not mean improvement, even if it appears to be at the beginning. You could probably point to the August 1789 period of the French Revolution as an example of the 'utopic' phase, but I'm not certain. The fall of Saddam's government in Iraq would be another example. Kurdish Syria is probably another decent example.
There's some niche a well-trained police force can fill, but it's a lot smaller than what the poorly-trained forces do now. Almost no one is actually calling for a complete and permanent abolition of police. Just a redefinition of their role.
> The Seattle Police Department and attached court system are beyond reform. We do not request reform, we demand abolition. We demand that the Seattle Council and the Mayor defund and abolish the Seattle Police Department and the attached Criminal Justice Apparatus. This means 100% of funding, including existing pensions for Seattle Police
Also, I would look at the Baltimore police/crime post-Freddie Grey to see how diminished police action leads to much increased crime. What the BPD did was horrifying but so was the rise in crime once they became less active.
a police force doesn't prevent you from being attacked, they only dispense justice after the fact and only sometimes.
welfare, courts and legal systems have a far larger impact than police as a means to prevent violence by having a peaceful way to resolve issues between individuals and ensuring basic needs are met. they also happen to be cheaper.
most violence happens at the edge of society where people cannot avail themselves of the court system. (drugs/prostitution)
But that is the thing I don't see being recognize. While the current institute that is the police could pass away, society will still have rules and will still want enforcers of those rules (though not all rules are equally enforced). And you see this in any supposedly anarchic community, they still have social standards they enforce, they just do not rely the nearby government for enforcement of smaller issues (though there is still a reliance for larger issues, such as stopping annexation by an entity with a larger force). In turn this makes me think all such communities are actually minarchist instead of anarchist, which is a drastic difference in base assumptions.
I doubt many people are against the idea of a specialized government role that provides protection services.
What they are against is:
* Thinking we can get that role by reforming existing police systems, given how opposed police systems are to such reform
* That these systems need the absurd budgets of police departments
* That the role requires absurd levels of protection for violent actions
* That the role requires armaments in the majority of cases
Going form police to a role that fits those criteria is going to start with not having police.
1. Abolish police.
2. << A miracle happens. >>
Why is it so hard for americans to imagine that it's possible to have atleast a semifunctional police apparatus?
Orwell almost certainly did support anarchist revolution and utopia, given his role in the Spanish Civil War - and his concern about the suppression of anarchism through a totalitarian control of information is exactly what 1984 is about. He never would have felt that "Anarchic utopias do not stay utopic for all that long."
eventually the idiots/assholes will become a problem that needs to be dealt with
Certainly an interesting recursion problem.
Everyone tends to get nervous about that though.
police force -> used to arrest dangerous criminals only
police wardens -> used to review, charge, change police policy, and arrest police officers who violate the law.
social officer -> used for all non-violent community enforcement. fines, ticketing, homelessness, mental health issues, etc. have no power to arrest anyone.
Most came together with utopian ideals but fell apart as tension arose between those that just wanted to drop out and take acid and those who actually worked hard and tried to build something. Only one remains AFAICT and that one is atypical, enforcing sharing of everything, down to having a communal wardrobe, and having work schedules etc.
It'll be a decent experiment to see if they can come up with non-violent policing alternatives to keep order, or if they resort to the same tactics as before.