Cops -- Newly Wary Of Looking Like Authoritarian Assholes -- Open Fire On, Arrest Journalists

from the can't-have-bad-optics-if-you-take-out-the-eyes-[taps-head] dept

There was a window of opportunity for cops following the George Floyd killing. Floyd, suspected of nothing more than passing a fake $20 bill, was killed by Officer Derek Chauvin of the Minneapolis PD. Chauvin placed his knee on Floyd's neck until he was dead. This act lasted for nearly nine minutes -- and for nearly three minutes after Chauvin checked for a pulse and found nothing. Yet he persisted, and none of the three cops around him stopped him.

Chauvin has been criminally charged and is under arrest. We'll see where that takes us. But the opportunity was there for the rest of the nation's cops to separate themselves from this "bad apple." Cop defenders ignore what bad apples do to barrels, but we won't. Chauvin is a symptom. He is not the disease.

As protests broke out around the nation, law enforcement agencies responded. While a small number attempted to find middle ground with aggrieved citizens, most acted as though they were a law unto themselves in these troubled times.

One site got it completely right -- a site that so often offers up hot takes that it is the source of its own meme. Slate, of all places, nailed this call:

Police Erupt in Violence Nationwide

And they did. They shot canisters onto the porches of people not violating curfew declarations. They shot protesters in the face with rubber bullets and tear gas canisters. And they treated the press like every authoritarian nation treats the press: as enemy combatants.

This should come as no surprise. When the shit goes down, no rights will be respected. The Fourth tends to go first, but the First is often right behind it.

First, we had to deal with the coronavirus and government grabs for power. And this is where we are now: trying to limit a rational response to hundreds of years of racism, manifested as Officer Chauvin's decision to place his knee on the neck of a black man until long after the man was dead.

The streets are filled with cameras. Cops control most of them. But they can't control journalists. So, they seek to intimidate them by making it clear their presence isn't welcomed. The current situation may heighten the response but it has been this way for years. Cops have made it clear -- and they've been backed by the Commander-in-Chief -- the press is the enemy. Journalists record things and those recordings usually make their way to many people -- far more than the average internet rando could hope to rope in. If you can't control the narrative, you can always attempt to control the journalists.

When chaos is on the menu, the cops can still try to maintain control of the reporting. And most of their sins will be forgiven because the situation was unforeseeable. But when it's happening, we can see it. We can see what they do and how they react. And, because they react badly, every unblinking eye must be closed. The power must remain centralized, and if that means taking a few journalists out, so be it.

Filed Under: 1st amendment, george floyd, journalism, police, police brutality, police violence, protests, reporters


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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 5:43pm

    'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

    Of course they're going to try to drive off anyone with a camera who isn't them, while some misguided individuals may make some noise about 'yet another murder by police' it's obvious that fiends with cameras are what really kicked off this whole mess, and as such it's clear that unauthorized cameras are a clear and present danger to everyone involved who matters.

    The only acceptable narrative is The Official Narrative and any that might challenge that by presenting unauthorized or inconvenient recordings simply must go and let their betters handle things. If it takes persuading someone to clear out at gun-point then that's a price that they are willing for others to pay.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 6:57pm

      Re: 'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

      Off-topic, do you play BATTD by any chance? If so I am sorry for dominating the group.

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      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:33pm

        Re: Re: 'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

        Not even sure what that is, so going to say no, almost certainly not.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 8:58pm

          Re: Re: Re: 'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

          Not sure what that is either, so I ran it through a mix of madlibs and an a backronym generator.

          Favorite outcome so far: Badminton Addict's Time Travel Defense.

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          • identicon
            teka, 2 Jun 2020 @ 4:28am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: 'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

            "I was nowhere near the site of the murder, I was in 1878, playing a spirited game across from Lord D'Marche"

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 4:32pm

          Re: Re: Re: 'If you can't see it we didn't do it.'

          I guess he has you confused with That Other One Guy.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 6:34pm

    This is what happens when the playbook is built around enforcing submission via overwhelming use of "non-lethal" (=less lethal) force and punishing law breakers, instead of de-escalation and rehabilitation.

    Not that it's any news USA is still a developing country like China.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 9:20pm

      Re:

      "non-lethal" (=less lethal) force

      = not lethal quite as often as guns

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 10:07pm

        Less lethal

        There's no such thing as truly non-lethal, which is something I've complained about in excess considering how victims in video games and Detective Comics never succumb to medical shock or brain damage.

        In the real world, stun settings (whether we're talking CS gas or pepper spray or sonic blasters or pepper-ball guns) sooner or later are turned into methods of torture. And one of the members of the press in last night's activities was held down by one officer while another pepper sprayed his eyes at point blank.

        We don't know how many people were tazed to death while in police custody, because they absolutely do not report those numbers anywhere.

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        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 10:32pm

          Re: Less lethal

          "something I've complained about in excess considering how victims in video games and Detective Comics never succumb to medical shock or brain damage"

          I appreciate the sentiment, but if you're demanding absolute realism from video games and comic books you already have a big problem. Ezio wouldn't survive a fall from the Roman Colosseum into a haybale either, but realism would make the game less fun.

          "In the real world, stun settings (whether we're talking CS gas or pepper spray or sonic blasters or pepper-ball guns) sooner or later are turned into methods of torture"

          Yes, and the ones doing that should be held accountable, especially when they do actually result in injury and/or death. That it hasn't is part of the current problem, and attention is better placed there than whether or not a game serious accurately depicts what happens to fictional characters in the context of something that doesn't claim to be realistic.

          For context - the recent games in the Hitman series you mentioned there are famous for a bug that allowed a briefcase to be used as a homing device to kill someone, which fans demanded be reintroduced after it was fixed because a homing briefcase was so fun. I think you're better focusing your attention on real life.

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          • icon
            Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 3:14am

            The problem with Batman

            It's not that I want less-lethal weapons in video games to result in realistic TBI, but our fiction often relies on heroes being able to KO enemies (and friends!) reliably without long term adverse effects.

            Batman is a notable example, keeping a code vs. killing and yet beating the tar out of common street thugs by the thousands, and yet he (allegedly) has a clean conscience. We've never seen Wayne occasionally visit one of the thirty-odd guys he left paraplegic or permanently in a coma or the family of the guy who died of his TBI after Batman knocked him out.

            Now this doesn't stop me from enjoying Batman (or Agent 47 or video games that are fun despite their indulgences from reality) but things like this put into sharp relief why these characters could not exist in the real world, and sometimes struggle to be believable in settings that are supposed to be a lot like the real world. I'm sure the homing briefcase helps.

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 3:33am

              Re: The problem with Batman

              "but our fiction often relies on heroes being able to KO enemies (and friends!) reliably without long term adverse effects"

              True, but this is a trope that long predates videogames and comics. I remember Mr. T being regularly knocked out so that he would get on a plane with the rest of the A Team, but we saw zero adverse effects of that, or indeed of any other violence.

              It goes further than that as well - it wasn't until the last few decades that you actually saw the pain and blood of a gunshot wound, for example, and Home Alone would be a very different movie if you saw the actual damage being done! The fact is that unless you're telling a real life story, such things are not only not necessary but can be harmful to the entertainment value of the product.

              The real issue is people who gather their fact from fictional entertainment. If a person is actually willing to ignore real life torture because Batman doesn't show him the real effects of a takedown move, the problem goes way beyond what DC decided to publish.

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    • icon
      Bergman (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:44pm

      Re:

      Legally speaking, if you fire a 'less lethal' round at a cop, he is justified in drawing his firearm and returning fire. If you live, you will be charged with attempted murder of a cop, not merely assault.

      This is because there is a crucial difference between less-lethal and non-lethal.

      Police have exactly the same right to use force in defense of self or others as you or I do - they have the right because they are citizens not because they are cops. Being cops gives them the ability to seek out danger and still claim self defense, while non-cops can at most stand their ground.

      Keep the above in mind the next time you see someone aiming a 'less lethal' weapon in your direction.

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  • identicon
    Glenn, 1 Jun 2020 @ 6:45pm

    Continue to antagonize/assault the people who pay your salary, and you'll be out on the street looking for a new job... or in prison for breaking the laws you swore to uphold.

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    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:37pm

      The people who pay their salary

      Maybe this will shed light on the moral hazard of taxpayers not being able to adequately govern where their taxes go.

      It's time to stop saying Fuck The Cops and start saying Abolish Law Enforcement.

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    • icon
      rangda (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 8:50pm

      Re:

      Citations needed. I've seen precious little in the way of accountability.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Jun 2020 @ 11:05am

      Re:

      Glenn, it's humorous that you think any but a very small minority of the people occasionally roughed up by police pay any taxes whatever.

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      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 8 Jun 2020 @ 11:23pm

        Re: Re:

        Everybody pay taxes. If you don't understand that, you might have to re-examine what taxes are - income tax is not the only one, yet it's the one that xenophobes tend to think is the only one that matters.

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  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 6:50pm

    Rebel Yells for everyone!

    Oh yeah, the police love this. In the Ferguson unrest, the curfew hour was a whoop-hollerin' good time for our boys in blue who'd ride around on their MRAPS (sometimes ignoring the streets) lobbing tear-gas and flashbang canisters anywhere and everywhere that suited them. Points for getting them into residence windows, ruining a night for a whole family.

    US law enforcement officers love, love, LOVE our police state and the ability to wage murder and wanton destruction on us lowly peons, especially when we are some kind of citizen that's out-of-favor (black, crazy, non-wonderbread, Muslim, goth etc.) Then we can be shot at with guaranteed impunity. And when the peons get upset about it, they get to break out the big party favors and look scary in the dark.

    Don't expect things to get any better on their own. We've listened to this tune before.

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    • icon
      Bergman (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:52pm

      Re: Rebel Yells for everyone!

      I doubt they'll enjoy it much when they finally meet a good person with a gun. They want to play soldier? They can experience what being downrange is like.

      This is why our Founders were so hung up on standing armies and the militia. This is why armed protests are becoming a thing - police don't like shooting at crowds that outnumber them, outgun them, and are able to shoot back.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 6:59pm

    Human rights violations

    Sue them now. Every jurisdiction is responsible for the conduct of its employees. Sue them until you own everything that used to be controlled by them.

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    • icon
      Yakko Warner (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:27pm

      Re: Human rights violations

      With Qualified Immunity, your lawsuit will have a snowball's chance in hell. Probably wouldn't even last long enough to make the news.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 7:07am

        Re: Re: Human rights violations

        I thought QI only protected an individual officer from liability, not the department and the municipality?

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:16am

        Re: Re: Human rights violations

        Yeah, why bother. Just give up already.

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      • icon
        R.H. (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:33pm

        Re: Re: Human rights violations

        Qualified Immunity only protects the officers themselves from liability. It doesn't protect the municipalities or states that employ them from liability. While that means that lawsuits will only hurt the taxpayers, it's better than doing nothing.

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      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 3:21am

        Re: Re: Human rights violations

        "With Qualified Immunity, your lawsuit will have a snowball's chance in hell."

        Not quite true.

        1) Cop assault innocent.
        2) Innocent sues cop.
        3) Qualified Immunity exonerates cop.
        4) Citizen sues City.
        5) Citizen gets paid by tax money, everyone loses...except the cop who leaves the field laughing.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:00pm

    What do these insane lunatics think they will accomplish?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:15pm

      What do these insane lunatics think they will accomplish?

      Feudal supremacy. A fascist state with them in charge. Or maybe like Batman they're just working out childhood issues by beating up on easy prey.

      The whole point of society is to not have boots stomping on faces forever. So when we have that, society is failing.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:17pm

      Re:

      Implying any thought goes into it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:22pm

      Re:

      Some just love authoritarian violence, and they are in a culture steeped in it, and they are trained to it.

      Any thinking ones, and some of those higher up, giving the orders, are just waiting for a human being to defend themselves or others by detaining or hurting or killing a cop. Then they can declare martial law or some equivalent on the streets. And in your homes. And on the internet.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:35pm

        Martial law...

        Is expensive and when inadequately justified solidifies the resistance into a movement.

        Not that those who advocate martial law and deploying military backup know that.

        It's also a reason the fringe theorists have less to fear.

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        • identicon
          Paul B, 1 Jun 2020 @ 11:23pm

          Re: Martial law...

          This is exactly what is getting me confused.

          You have lots of people who are mad at cops and doing so legally, and you put cops in their face and let them open fire. Your only making the people organize to escalate the problem.

          Ya, arrest and charge looters, you have video evidence so that's fine, but turning people into riots, while a classic cop move, is really dumb when so many people are both mad and unemployed.

          Ps: why are news media not using drones yet? I'd happily build a drone that has no compliance with FAA no fly zones as to film protests from good angles and shit.

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          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 11:39pm

            'Beatings will continue until compliance is reached'

            While it would be all too easy to assume that they are trying to escalate things for whatever reason I suspect that the explanation is that they're so set in their ways that they simply cannot imagine any response to members of the public that aren't properly cowed other than violence in an attempt to beat people into submission.

            When all you have is a gun/pepper-spray/club and an indoctrinated mindset that anyone without a badge is your enemy...

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:20am

              Re: 'Beatings will continue until compliance is reached'

              It is almost as if they look upon the general public as though they were a cash crop, beasts of burden. Just look at the way they treat their livestock, the general population is treated in similar fashion although they are not cannibalistic ... yet.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:41pm

    and if that means taking a few journalists out, so be it.

    Police have been murdering journalists across the nation?

    Where did you read this?

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    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 10:01pm

      Re:

      "Taking out" has other meanings than murder. For example, a journalist may be taken out of a situation by shooting at and/or arresting them, as per the examples in the article.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:28am

      Re:

      "Police have been murdering journalists across the nation?"

      I did not see the statement (and if that means taking a few journalists out, so be it) as a claim of it occurring, but rather a warning of what will eventually happen. Gallows humor.

      Notorious for their bad aim and itchy trigger finger, police have taken it on the chin regarding their inability to stop the reporting of factual occurrences involving police brutality and its continual problematic history. I just made that up and there is no reference to anything in support of same, just sayin ...

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Jun 2020 @ 11:08am

      Re:

      It's essentially fruitless attempting to get Cushing to use reason.

      In this very story, his definition of police "finding middle ground" with rioters is for them to literally prostrate themselves before the mob. On their knees in surrender. Those are the police officers who should be summarily fired for cowardice.

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      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 8 Jun 2020 @ 11:27pm

        Re: Re:

        "In this very story, his definition of police "finding middle ground" with rioters is for them to literally prostrate themselves before the mob."

        No, it means finding a peaceful way to deal with the situation rather than using violence to escalate the situation. peaceful protectors are not an enemy, they are expressing one of the basic rights afforded to them by your constitution.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 7:53pm

    ACAB.

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  • icon
    Ehud Gavron (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 8:48pm

    The window of opportunity...

    There was a window of opportunity for cops following the George Floyd killing.

    There was a window of opportunity for cops following MLK Jr.

    This is just the latest example, and it comes on the tail of cops shooting an ice-cream eating Black man in his own home, a Black man selling a cigarette, a Black woman whose husband picked up a rifle because of a no-knock raid on the wrong address, a Black man with a knee on his neck.

    Lots of "Windows of Opportunit[ies] for Cops" and they took none of them.

    Way too many years.
    Way too many "Windows of Opportunity".
    Way too many people dead.

    Nice article. I just disagree this was some "new" opportunity for a part of the US culture that ignores the fact that cops have been doing this for DECADES.

    There are two types of cops. Bad cops. And those who stand by and let them be bad cops.

    E

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  • icon
    rangda (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 8:49pm

    As a friend constantly points out when he links police brutality articles on FB, "99% of cops give the rest a bad name". If anything I think his percentage is too low. The majority that condone this behavior through their silence and inaction are more of a problem than those that exhibit the behavior.

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    icon
    seedeevee (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 9:24pm

    Yes, Obama's been there

    Seems to be the attack on journalists in America started with Obama and Assange (Who wasn't even in the USA).

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    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 10:52pm

      'Look over there, a distraction!'

      Filling the free spot on the first day of the week, that's handy.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 12:37am

      Re: Yes, Obama's been there

      Hoooo boy, that's some pure, stinkin' whataboutism, right there.

      Look, we covered Obama's attacks on journalists in great details. And we spoke out against them and pushed back on all the rationalizations and justifications from Obama's supporters.

      But, this is way fucking worse. Even the fact that you bring up Assange is telling. The Obama DOJ decided that it had no reason to indict Assange and never did so. It was the Trump administration that did.

      And while there were a few cases of journalist arrests during the Obama administration, you can still count how many it happened to over 8 years on two hands. The attacks on journalists in the last couple days alone more than outdid all of what happened under Obama.

      So fuck off if you want to play games here. I know your only purpose here is to push your Trumpist agenda, but it won't fucking work.

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      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:15am

        Re: Re: Yes, Obama's been there

        "And we spoke out against them and pushed back on all the rationalizations and justifications from Obama's supporters."

        ...and even if you didn't, so what? Obama's failings do not mean that Trump cannot be criticised. The thing that these fools always forget is that it's possible to honestly criticise both.

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    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:15am

      Re: Yes, Obama's been there

      "Seems to be the attack on journalists in America started with Obama"

      I'm not sure this is the right time and place to announce your ignorance of history.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 3:11am

      Re: Yes, Obama's been there

      "Seems to be the attack on journalists in America started with Obama and Assange..."

      Congratulations, you officially win the award for Most Tasteless Use of the "But Obama" trope.

      Did you have anything to say about the way "tough on crime" turned into "Cops murdering people execution-style" or "Cops systematically assaulting the press"?

      The only thing your attempts at gaslighting become in the public eye, right now, is the understanding that the one and only response of self-styled conservatives is to holler "Look away from that murder! There was A BLACK MAN in the white house, I tell you!!"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 5:32am

      Re: Yes, Obama's been there

      Which begs the question - if Trump's reaction is simply more of Obama's policies, why were all you simple minded morons complaining about him before?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 11:25am

        Complaining about Obama

        You can go into the Techdirt archives and see that yes, we were raging about the rising police state (and Obama's continuation of Bush policies) during that era.

        I don't know where you guys get the idea that we take sides according to the color of our socks or the color of our President. No, police brutality has been on our grumble list for decades now.

        Remember that the FBI had been disobeying congress regarding tracking all the police-involved killings for decades and we had to resort to nonprofits (and after Ferguson, news agencies who made a big deal about it) to track them.

        We also watched the rise of the phone camera and the police predilection for confiscating them and arresting picture takers on the account of some poorly applicable (or totally fictitious) law.

        This is not an Orange Man Bad thing that came up recently. It's a Blue Men Bad thing that has been ongoing through the 20th century.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 3:28am

        Re: Re: Yes, Obama's been there

        "...why were all you simple minded morons complaining about him before?"

        Because Trump is a white man? In the minds of these self-styled "conservatives" that naturally means what he does is proper and natural where it would be an unnatural overreach if performed by a black man.

        That, basically, is the real source of the incessant whine of "But Obama!" that we keep seeing. That black people should be enjoying the same rights as white people is in itself an abomination to the Very Fine People.
        And if you ask them about it they'll say "Ah'm no racist or anythin', but puttin' black folks in an office lordin' it over white folk just ain't right, ah tell ya."

        And then you tell them that's exactly what "being a racist" means and they lose their shit completely.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:35am

      Re: Yes, Obama's been there

      "Seems to be the attack on journalists in America started with Obama and Assange (Who wasn't even in the USA)."

      Seems you are wrong., do you ever get tired of it?
      fyi:
      List of journalists killed in the United States

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  • icon
    Federico (profile), 1 Jun 2020 @ 10:44pm

    If it happened anywhere else

    Significant human rights issues included: arbitrary or unlawful killings by the government or its agents; harsh and life-threatening prison conditions; violence against journalists including assaults, death threats and one journalist shot and killed; censorship of a free press including arrests and the closure of two radio stations for ostensible licensing irregularities; corruption in all branches of government; crimes of violence against women and girls, to which government negligence significantly contributed

    https://www.state.gov/reports/2019-country-reports-on-human-rights-practices/ghana/

    Or ganized criminal elements, including local and transnational gangs and narcotics traffickers, were significant perpetrators of violent crimes and committed acts of homicide, torture, kidnapping, extortion, human trafficking, intimidation, and other threats and violence directed against human rights defenders, judicial authorities, lawyers, the business community, journalists, bloggers, women, and members of vulnerable populations. The government investigated and prosecuted many of these crimes,

    https://www.state.gov/reports/2019-country-reports-on-human-rights-practices/honduras/

    Sig nificant human rights issues included: unlawful or arbitrary killings, including extrajudicial killings, by and on behalf of the government and nonstate actors; reports of forced disappearance by and on behalf of the government and nonstate actors; torture by and on behalf of the government and nonstate actors; arbitrary detention by and on behalf of the government and nonstate actors; harsh and life-threatening prison conditions; arbitrary and unlawful interference with privacy; significant problems with the independence of the judiciary; the worst forms of restrictions on free expression and the press, including violence, threats of violence, and unjustified arrests or prosecutions of journalists, censorship, and the existence of criminal libel laws; corruption

    https://www.state.gov/reports/2019-country-reports-on-human-rights-practices/philippines /

    Ajit Pai is probably already looking in "ostensible licensing irregularities" of the news venues whose journalists were assaulted by police. What else is missing?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jun 2020 @ 11:58pm

    Our Founding Fathers Had a Prescription

    Suppressed rifles could be employed as a crowd control measure to deliver thigh shots to take down evil cops.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 4:44am

    Nothing about the situation was unforeseeable

    This has happened many times before and the response is always the same. The powers that be never learn anything from it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    JoeCool (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 5:45am

    New record?

    Given his speeches the last couple days, I wonder if the head Cheeto is going to set a new record and get impeached more than once in a single term. Seems more and more likely.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    timlash (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 6:48am

    My Sad Question

    Where is the vocal response from Democratic leadership? Is Sleepy Joe trying to prove the moniker? Why isn't Pelosi having her own press daily conferences condemning Trumps actions? Why don't we see AOC shouting for minority rights? Why are the leaders from the left leaving this fight to the powerless masses? The most effective voice has been somebody called Killer Mike. How low has the leadership of the left sunk?

    I should be yearning for the November election to cast my vote against rising tyranny, yet I fear the distinct possibility we could be in for four more years of this shit due to the lack of effective Democratic leadership.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:07am

      Re: My Sad Question

      They're all giving Trump enough rope to guarantee he hangs himself.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        timlash (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 10:57am

        Re: Re: My Sad Question

        From the Biden article - "On Monday, Biden held his first in-person campaign event since the coronavirus took hold in the United States in mid-March."

        It would have been nice to see Pelosi/Shumer condemn the looter --> shooter Trump edict too, instead of waiting for subsequent the escalation. Instead Pelosi ignores that.

        And AOC is crying about the daughter of the most Powerful Mayor in the country.

        Not exactly the inspiring JFK/MLK rhetoric of old.

        Although, Biden's speech today (6/2) was on point. More of that please. How about every day so the news has something to play counter to Trump's daily diarrhea.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Thad (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 11:38am

          Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

          From the Biden article - "On Monday, Biden held his first in-person campaign event since the coronavirus took hold in the United States in mid-March."

          Is your objection that Biden hasn't been holding enough campaign events? Because that doesn't seem like what you were complaining about before.

          It would have been nice to see Pelosi/Shumer condemn the looter --> shooter Trump edict too, instead of waiting for subsequent the escalation. Instead Pelosi ignores that.

          I'll agree that the "I just ignore what he says" response was a deeply disappointing response.

          And AOC is crying about the daughter of the most Powerful Mayor in the country.

          I mean, what, should we not criticize the police when they doxx a politician's child as an act of political retaliation? That kinda seems like something we should be "crying" about.

          But sure, okay, here are a few more recent results for "AOC" in Google News:

          "Unacceptable": AOC blasts Bill de Blasio for ‘"making excuses" for NYPD violence against protesters

          AOC castigates cops for ramming protesters in Brooklyn: 'NO ONE gets to slam an SUV through a crowd of human beings’

          George Floyd death: AOC says politicians scared of ‘political power of police’ as she and Ilhan Omar call for officer to be charged with murder

          So, in response to your question, "Why don't we see AOC shouting for minority rights?" the answer is clearly because you didn't spend any time whatsoever looking. You typed a question into a comment box and didn't bother trying a search box first.

          Of course I'm sure you've got some objection to those three links and any others I may produce, because you're starting with your conclusion and shaping evidence to fit it, instead of the other way around.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            timlash (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 12:48pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

            Perhaps I unfairly threw AOC under the bus.

            Answer this. Who has had the more broadly effective messaging? Killer Mike in an eight minute speech next to the mayor of Atlanta, or all the stories you can scrape together from JB, NP and AOC over the last two weeks? I have seen more people sharing and commenting on Killer Mike's words than your fistful of news stories.

            We're a few steps from an outright civil war. I want to see some Democrats howling at the moon over the injustice and ham-fisted use of force in response to protests. What I have seen seems mild and insufficient in comparison to the magnitude of the revolting injustice and ongoing events. Instead we get Nancy's profound '...dishonors every value that faith teaches us'. No shit Nancy! Got anything else in light of the White House's disgusting use of force against peaceful protesers?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 1:34pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

              "Perhaps I unfairly threw AOC under the bus."

              Because you didn't look?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 6:10am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

              "We're a few steps from an outright civil war."

              I'd argue the civil war never really stopped. The Union beat The Confederacy, true...but the north didn't really give enough of a shit to properly follow up. As a result the south remained as openly racist a shithole as it could possibly be, with one racist asshole or entire administration after the other consistently pushing the envelope of federal law just to see where the lines were drawn.

              It was just that the truly racist asshats didn't have much leeway, even in the GOP - until that fateful day when, in a fit of desperation, the GOP decided to adopt the trailer-trash populists catered to by the likes of Sarah Palin. Didn't take too long for the traditional old conservatives to up and leave in disgust, leaving the birther movement, the tea party movement, and the randist libertarians to represent what was left.

              You are in a civil war of sorts. Just that it's one where thankfully it's damn hard to draw a border to put the big guns at with both sides represented in every city.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Tanner Andrews (profile), 6 Jun 2020 @ 4:25pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

                but the north didn't really give enough of a shit to properly follow up. As a result the south remained as openly racist a shithole as it could possibly be

                Says the genius who failed to observe that the Floyd murder occurred in Minnesota and was carried out by agents of the state as part of their duties during their working hours.

                Historic notes: It appears that the first ``Jim Crow'' cars were operated in the Boston area, and of course we ought to remember Roberts v. City of Boston, 59 Mass. 198 (1849), cited and discussed with approval in Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896) (may not be good law after Henderson v. U.S., 339 U.S. 816 (1950)).

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jun 2020 @ 4:50am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My Sad Question

                  "Says the genius who failed to observe that the Floyd murder occurred in Minnesota and was carried out by agents of the state as part of their duties during their working hours."

                  ...it's on me for not being clear and following up. The civil war was all about slavery, no two ways about that. But the primary engine driven by that cause - which finally caused the war - was the political power struggle - federal vs state power.

                  The union won, federal power became the winner...and then they called it a day. Black people now had rights - on paper.

                  Important to note that although the war was pushed by the abolitionists the union as a whole was torn over the equal rights issue - with Lincoln's infamous debate against Douglas, 1858, where he declared himself against black emancipation, setting the tone.
                  Despite that to a lot of people Racism == Southern US as the perception exists that's where we find the most notorious and open racists.
                  And for that mistake, mea maxima culpa.

                  So kindly let me rephrase my above statements with a bit more nuance. The Union won. The confederacy was completely crushed as an entity. The abolitionists, however, did not manage to follow through and bring the same victory. Sure, the black people were "free", but the people who believed they should have equal rights were the minority still.

                  And that's more or less how it stayed until Rosa Parks decided to sit in a front seat on that bus.

                  THAT is my point, above. The civil war laid down a ground plan in broad terms. Consolidated federal power. Broke the back of the southern power structure which relied heavily on slavery. But when it came to actual equal rights the winners had little political will to bring a decisive victory home. The sore losers were left to ferment their toxic ideology entirely on their own. And like any other decent scapegoat ideology it spread. Racist garbage, whether from the south or north, found a whole lot of common ground once the obvious confederate vs yankee question had been solved.

                  The results of which can be seen very clearly every time another Ferguson or George Floyd comes around. The ever present racist bullshit pops into the open, the establishment provides the worst possible response, riots happen. Then come a few political bandaids, some quick patching and a lot of talk back and forth.

                  The black communities finally run out of anger and sink back into getting discriminated against on all levels shaking their heads in apathy and despair. Meanwhile well-intentioned affluent white people break their own arms patting themselves on the back over yet another bill which either turns out to be largely ineffectual at dealing with the core issue or gets abolished by the republican asshat in office next time around.

                  until the next outrage, at which the black community then explodes twice as hard as the last time.

                  The last 50 years worth of american history is not that of a nation at peace. It's that of a nation in a permanent low intensity conflict within its own borders.

                  Hence my argument that the civil war never really ended. There was just a ceasefire which temporarily pacified the civil rights advocates and, of course, black people.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:37am

      Re: My Sad Question

      "Where is the vocal response from Democratic leadership?"

      When all one looks to for their news is Fox ......

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 3:41am

      Re: My Sad Question

      "Where is the vocal response from Democratic leadership?"

      It takes time to properly train Biden to just say his lines and not get creepily handsy with present women. And given that Trump appears hell-bent on illustrating his fitness with the fires from burning his own credibility the DNC probably feels they don't need to do anything at all to appear to be the Less Objectionable Choice - which is all they're shooting for.

      "How low has the leadership of the left sunk?"

      It's really that the "left" is hysterically afraid of actual leadership which is why they'll hype the easily led sock puppet as a candidate while going balls to the wall to ensure that anyone who'd get it in their head to actually govern is dismissed as...hmm..."socialist", "inept", or "caring but incompetent".

      "...yet I fear the distinct possibility we could be in for four more years of this shit due to the lack of effective Democratic leadership."

      Well, the DNC now appears to believe that the republicans will keep introducing candidates so repugnant to thinking men most democrats and swing voters will keep holding their noses and vote for whatever lame duck the DNC feels fit to introduce.

      So I present to you the indefinite future where you'll keep being faced with the choice of abstaining or holding your noses and vote for whatever you feel to be the least repulsive alternative.

      This is where direct democracy has a solid win over a republic - as long as voter participation is high enough you'll always get more than that choice between two evils, and that includes at least someone who is, at the very least, inoffensive.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 11:09am

        The Less Objectionable Choice

        Yeah, because that worked so well last time.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          timlash (profile), 3 Jun 2020 @ 12:53pm

          Re: The Less Objectionable Choice

          We'd probably be better off with President Boaty McBoatface. I'd rather have a navy guy like him as Commander-in-Chief.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 4 Jun 2020 @ 3:32am

          Re: The Less Objectionable Choice

          "Yeah, because that worked so well last time."

          You know that. I know that.

          The DNC, however, still doesn't know that.

          Frankly speaking the political history of the US in the 21st century looks like a re-enactment of the worst periods documented of the roman republic where aggressive arch-conservatives and hawks led one faction of the senate against the other half...which was composed of slick politicians so steeped in greed and corruption they gladly traded victories for defeat as long as it meant avoiding the real unacceptable outcome - having to elect someone who was competent and intent on fixing things.

          Sadly the DNC leadership, if push comes to shove, will happily accept Trump as a lifelong dictator as long as the alternative is having to launch a candidate for election who actually cares. Biden is, if nothing else, a willing puppet which is why they'll persistently ignore any candidate they envision to be less pliable.

          They'd prefer a democrat candidate wins, but only on their terms.

          So get used to holding your nose. If the DNC ever allows a candidate through which you could actually approve of rather than just deeming the lesser of two evils then that'll be a miraculous side effect no one planned for.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Jun 2020 @ 3:25pm

            Holding my nose

            So if Trump wins, he stays the orange void in the White House. State reliance on the federal government continues to dissolve, and we might see a (continuation of) fracturing of the US in-effect if not officially. If I'm lucky, Cascadia might become a sub-union.

            If Trump loses, we have an Obama-era reprieve for four years, maybe eight. Then Donny comes back (or, I'm wagering, Ivanka) if they can't get a good proper Hitler or Mussolini who doubles down on the scapegoat state, complete with concentration camps (and sooner or later a processing program). They use the surveillance state (which we still haven't dismantled) to hunt down dissenters. Eventually the US has to get expansionist and go to war to fuel its economy. Maybe against China and its 80,000,000-man gender imbalance. They have lots of troops to throw at a good old fashioned world war.

            These scenarios are why I'm hoping we might see a revolution right now even if it risks personally perishing in the chaos.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Jun 2020 @ 6:30am

              Re: Holding my nose

              Yep. It's heads, they win, tails, you lose.

              It's been said again and again that the greatest ally of the republican party is - the democratic party. It's true. The DNC is completely unable to bring itself to actually support a candidate who might bring meaningful and systematic change. The one thing they fear more than death itself is a presidential leader.

              So they'll present a hyped sock puppet who can sit up straight and mouth the lines off a teleprompter as long as the puppeteer has a hand up his ass guiding him. The pork barrel shall open and there will be gravy and platitudes for all. At the end of which the citizenry is yet more disillusioned about the DNC's attempt to persistently emulate Hindenburg - both the last chancellor of the Weimar republic whose inept reign gave Hitler his niche, and the airship which went down in fire.

              And the people will crave someone, anyone who can get shit done. The GOP will have someone like that on offer, oh yes. A strong man, most likely. Someone who won't sweat the small stuff in the way of his plan - like civil rights or factual truths.

              It'll never go as far as concentration camps, but it'll be bad enough. Forced mass expulsions perhaps. Massive expansion of prisons and pseudo-permanent incarceration. Gloves all the way off for the boys in blue. Most certainly an attempt to disenfranchise anyone even considered a suspect activist. All of it backed by a self-fulfilling cry of "Everyone's against us" where anyone objecting gets pointed out as a dangerous "antifa activist" or worse - a liberal. All that good old stuff from Hoover and McCarthy hauled out of the closet to be fueled by the fear and hatred of the new bogeyman.

              And the thing is, there'll be no master plan about that. It'll now as before be just one set of bumbling, malicious ultraconservatives and alt-righters after the other trying to do whatever it takes to make sure their guys remain in power.

              It's like speed-reading a european history book, really.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Colonel Panik, 2 Jun 2020 @ 7:50am

    Police

    If you aren't a cop you are a target

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Kitsune106, 2 Jun 2020 @ 7:52am

    What terrifies me

    Is not just the police going overboard. But also other actors, both terrorist, state or home.grown extremists using this as.excuse.

    And there is also fact that violence begets violence and there is also fact that I see some parallels with the American revolution.

    Also, what does terrify me is that people will claim that police were just following.orders and give them a pass. Sadly, I really do not see a good path that ends well that does not ebd up causing alot of collateral damage. And these are the good paths
    .....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:14am

      Re: What terrifies me

      If this all escalates just a little bit more police stations will be invaded, looted and set on fire. Cops' homes will be burned down. And protesters will march fully armed.

      The only way out of this is government intervention, not militarily, but politically by stating that police and their unions will be held accountable and actually doing something about it. But don't hold your breath. Our government is fully backing the police and what they're doing.

      The next logical step is martial law edging into a civil war or full-on rebellion. Trump will be remembered as the president that let the government fall after almost 250 relatively successful years.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 2:54pm

        Re: Re: What terrifies me

        just to claim prescience, I predict that Martial Law will eventually be declared. There can be no other response with the current Cheeto in Charge, who has already used the 1960's, "looting = shooting' claims and saying he will send in 'overwhelming force'.

        The next step will be Martial Law being used to postpone or delay the next presidential election entirely, I mean once you have absolute power, why give it up for any reason? Just because it 'looks bad' to be a dictator? Look how much Trump looks up to Xi and Kim Jong-un, Trump would love to be able to take over and become dictator for life.

        You heard it here first...

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    bshock, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:04am

    In a country where the President breaks laws on a daily basis and publicly espouses racist opinions, who would've thought that the police could start acting like Nazi thugs? Yes, it's a total mystery how official Fascist behavior could start popping up in a system run by a blatant Fascist.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anon, 2 Jun 2020 @ 8:46am

    You Forgot...

    You forgot to mention a Washington cop punching a cameraman in the face live on camera as he was broadcasting live to all of Australia... In case anyone in Australia had any doubts about what American police were like and why so many people were protesting.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 9:02am

      Re: You Forgot...

      Meanwhile, Nero fiddles as Rome burns. Trump's photo op during all of this is disgusting.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 2 Jun 2020 @ 11:22pm

        Re: Re: You Forgot...

        The photo op wasn't a problem. Issuing an order to use force on peaceful protesters so that he could do it, however...

        Remember a simpler time when all you had was the fevered imagination of right-wingers who baselessly believed that Obama would do such things, rather than concrete proof of Trump actually doing it with their full support? Hopefully his attacks on mail-in voting and the free speech rights of those telling you he's lying about it don't mean that he's actually going to rig the elections, but that's not a good bet right now.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 4 Jun 2020 @ 3:36am

          Re: Re: Re: You Forgot...

          "The photo op wasn't a problem. Issuing an order to use force on peaceful protesters so that he could do it, however..."

          It's so tonedeaf a move it takes the entitlement mindset of a Kim Jong-Un to perform. Trump just keeps borrowing moves from various parodies of dictatorships.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 9:24am

    But wait, there's more!

    Louisville cops, after murdering a woman sleeping in her own home for no reason, killed an unarmed businessman outside of his store while people were protesting the woman's murder.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jun 2020 @ 11:15am

    Don't forget the journalist shot in the eye and she lost it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    dd, 7 Jun 2020 @ 1:47pm

    who knew? 'US Policy, Israeli Tactics'

    mondoweiss.net/2020/06/george-floyd-killing-highlights-issue-of-us-police-training-in-israel/ Geo rge Floyd killing highlights issue of US police training in Israel BY  PHILIP WEISS  JUNE 4, 2020  “EACH YEAR, ADL TAKES A SELECT GROUP OF THE MOST SENIOR UNITED ST ATES LAW ENFORCEMENT TO ISRAEL TO LEARN HOW THEIR COUNTERPARTS FIGHT TERROR.” George  Floyd’s killing by Minneapolis police on May 25 has prompted some to liken American  policing methods to Israeli occupation policing, and to point out that many US police  officers have gotten training from Israeli officials under the sponsorship of Israel l obby organizations. For instance, the Morning Star published an article saying that th e Minneapolis police force once received training from Israelis. The training was eight years ago and there is no evidence that the officers who killed Floyd got the traini ng. At least 100 Minnesota police officers attended a 2012 conference hosted by the  Israeli consulate in Chicago, the second time such an event had been held. There the y learned the violent techniques used by Israeli forces as they terrorise the occupied Palestinian territories under the guise of security operations. The so-called counterte rrorism training conference in Minneapolis was jointly hosted by the FBI. The issue h as long been a focus in the Palestinian solidarity community. Thirty Georgia human righ ts and racial justice organizations last December came out in opposition of a program  sponsored by fervent Israel supporters in which state law enforcement agencies send offi cers to Israel for training. Durham, NC, banned such exchanges two years ago. Jewish Voice for Peace has for several years conducted a “Deadly Exchange” campaign that  decries the trainings. As JVP’s Pittsburgh chapter wrote after learning that the polic e chief there went to Israel for training in 2018: Exchanges between US police and  the Israeli army promote a brutal military occupation as a positive model for community  policing. Under the banner of “counter-terrorism” training, Israel is presenting les sons learned from 50 years of illegal military occupation over a Palestinian population deprived of human and civil rights… Racial profiling, violent suppression of protest , massive surveillance, militarization of school security and the ongoing displacement of  people from their homes are not lessons US law enforcement or US mayors should be b ringing home. Thousands of American law enforcement officers have gotten Israeli traini ng, the Intercept reported in 2017. Alice Speri wrote that several pro-Israel organizati ons have sponsored the programs. Thousands of American law enforcement officers frequen tly travel for training to one of the few countries where policing and militarism are even more deeply intertwined than they are here: Israel. In the aftermath of 9/11,  Israel seized on its decades-long experience as an occupying force to brand itself as  a world leader in counterterrorism. U.S. law enforcement agencies  took the Jewish stat e up on its expertise by participating in exchange programs sponsored by an array of  pro-Israel groups, like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee,  the Jewish Instit ute for National Security Affairs, and  the Anti-Defamation League. Over the past dec ade and a half, scores of top federal, state, and local police officers from dozens o f departments  from across the U.S. have gone to Israel to learn about its terrorism- focused policing. https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Deadly-Exchange-Report-Code-939480235.pdf [57 pgs...'US Policy, Israeli Tactics' an eye-opener]

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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